In an exclusive interview with SafeBettingSites.com, former Darts player Chris Mason gives his commentator insight on just how good Nathan Aspinall really is.
Mason also sings the praises of youngster Luke Littler.
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- Aspinall’s amazing run came out of nowhere
- Confidence will make Aspinall a ‘danger man’
- Better competition than Taylor’s era
- Youngster ‘Littler’ is ‘outstanding’
Question: Have you ever seen anything like Nathan Aspinall’s run of 11 out of 12 legs in the World Matchplay Final?
Chris Mason: “Yeah Peter Wright did similar a couple of times against Michael Smith, once in the Slam and once in the Worlds, where they just go on this incredible run of legs. To be honest at 5-5 I felt in commentary that he was just about holding on and then he went on this incredible run of winning 11 of 12 legs like you said. It was a fabulous performance but fair play to Jonny Clayton as well because he was going through the ringer all week. But I just think emotionally he didn’t have a lot left. But during legs 11 to 15 Nathan was averaging over 115 and sometimes you’ve just got to hold your hands up and say he was too good.”
Question: Will winning the Matchplay propel Aspinall to bigger things now?
Chris Mason: “It should certainly boost his confidence because he’s playing some great darts. He’s always been a real streetfighter of a player but you just felt he needed to add something to his game and I think changing barrels, even though it’s quite a small thing, it’s certainly changed him in terms of power scoring in his game. He’ll have that confidence and freedom to really express himself on stage now. He’s going to be a danger man.”
Question: Many of the top seeds were knocked out early at the Winter Gardens. How did that affect the tournament?
Chris Mason: “Years ago when Phil Tayor would get knocked out early it wouldn’t always make for a dramatic tournament. But I think there’s been a change in the game from that era where it was really just him and a couple of others, whereas now there’s more like 12 to 16 top players who are all capable of producing performances much like Nathan Aspinall did.”
Question: Are there any up and coming darts players that have really caught your eye.
Chris Mason: “Luke Littler. He’s 16 and he will win his tour card from the Winmau Development Tour this year, so he’ll be thrown straight in the deep end from January next year and he won’t need to go to Q School. He’s been playing some stuff down at the Super Series which I work on and he’s been absolutely outstanding, so look out for him next year.”