Former Borders darts player Gary Anderson was on top of the world at the weekend after winning the William Hill PDC World Championship.
Anderson, who comes from Eyemouth, lifted the title over 16-times winner Phil ‘The Power’ Taylor at the Alexandra Palace in London on Sunday.
And on winning, he immediately dedicated the victory to his two greatest heroes, former double world champion Jocky Wilson, and his late father, Gordon.
He said: “I remember my dad cheering at the TV when Jocky won the title against John Lowe.
“I was a schoolboy playing around in the house, and seeing that passion in my dad and Jocky got the sport into my blood.
“Over the years, I’ve always tried to emulate and achieve what Jocky did.
“I always hoped that one day I could bring the world championship back to Scotland for them.
“Now I’ve done it. It would be lovely to think they were chucking a few darts and having a wee dram when I lifted that trophy.”
In Sunday’s final Anderson led 3-1 and 6-4 only for Taylor to fight back to level at 3-3 and 6-6, taking the match into a last set decider.
In an all or nothing final set Anderson won all three legs for his first ever world title, putting the 2011 defeat to Adrian Lewis well and truly behind him.
After the game he said: “Me and Phil have had some battles over the last five or six years, he’s won a lot of them but I’ll take my win now!
“I think it’s going to take a while to sink in.”
Anderson, who celebrated his victory with a cup of tea, was cheered on stageside by his partner Rachel, and he later said the win was also for his boys, Ryan, Joel and baby Tai.
But it’s not always been about the success – he once threw his darts away into the Lakeside water after losing a match in the BDO version of the championships, claiming he ‘couldn’t buy a double’.
The championship trophy was presented by champion jockey Tony McCoy, and immediately after the event it was confirmed by promoter Barry Hearn that Anderson will now contest the 2015 Premier League as one of the four automatic qualifiers, along with Taylor, van Gerwen, and Lewis. The remaining participants are Raymond van Barneveld, Peter Wright, James Wade, Stephen Bunting, Dave Chisnall and Kim Huybrechts.