James Wade 'on the crest of a wave' as he continues fine form
James Wade overcame Michael Smith and Jeffrey de Zwaan in the finals of the Players Championship events last weekend
By Brian Barry
Last Updated: 19/04/19 4:07pm
Three titles in four Pro Tour events is quite the return. Indeed, those triumphs raise James Wade to lofty heights. Moving back up to ninth in the PDC Order of Merit, 'The Machine' will continue his robotic rise should he maintain this level of performance.
After a number of years of struggle which saw him drop out of the Premier League, the 36-year-old has returned to his very best.
Back-to-back major titles in late 2018, the European Championship and the Players Championship Finals saw the Englishman storm back into the big-time, and he has certainly kicked on.
Sitting in third position in the Premier League table after 12 games, Wade is flourishing. In truth, his 8-2 disposal of Peter Wright in Cardiff summed up 'The Machine' as a darts player. While Snakebite was far from his best, the 2009 Premier League champion concentrated on his own game and efficiently saw his task through to completion.
Although he is flying high, he feels his still has another gear.
"I'm not saying I can be a million miles better, but I know I've got a lot more to give," he told Live Darts after his victory in the Welsh capital. "I'm not frightened by playing the so-called top players.
"There are a lot of players out there who are absolutely phenomenal. It's a job for someone like myself to try and keep up with those players. But I still think I'm good enough to beat them all."
His red-hot form been making headlines, and speaking on The Darts Show Podcast, Colin Lloyd praised him.
"That's special," 'Jaws' said of Wade winning two Pro Tour events in one weekend.
"There's certainly only a handful of people who have done the double weekend. I know Jamie Caven did. Phil Taylor did. Robert Thornton did. He's in a group of special players.
"What makes it so hard is if you win the first day, you've got to regroup and gather all your thoughts for the second day. Don't tell anyone you're a bit tired from the day before, you have got to get on with it.
"He's just on the crest of a wave at the minute.
"I predicted last year that I don't think he'd win another major. Not only did he win another major, he won the World Series as well, and he's been mopping up titles.
"He doesn't know when he's beaten. In the Daryl Gurney game, 7-7, Daryl averaged just over 100. Wadey averaged 91. He still got 7-7 out of it. If you want to beat James Wade, you have to beat him. You've got to go over the line. If you don't, he'll just keep coming at you."
Wade is well-placed in the Premier League, as the show rolls onto Birmingham next Thursday, where he faces none other than reigning champ and current table-topper Michael van Gerwen.
What comes next? Night 13 - Thursday, April 25 - Arena Birmingham
|Mensur Suljovic||vs||Michael Smith|
|Rob Cross||vs||Gerwyn Price|
|Daryl Gurney||vs||Peter Wright|
|James Wade||vs||Michael van Gerwen|
"I would say I'm probably the least bothered out of all the players to play Michael van Gerwen," smiled Wade. "He's the best player in the world without doubt. I'm looking forward to it."
It would be foolish to write him off. 'The Machine' accounted for MVG, 7-4 when they met in round four in Exeter.
He's been backing up that form on the PDC circuit. A nine-dart finish at the German Darts Championship three weeks ago preceded his three Pro Tour titles in the space of eight days.
Next up is a trip to Munich for the German Darts Grand Prix on the European Tour, as he bids to gather momentum while still maintaining his charge in the Premier League.
A player who feeds off confidence, Wade is on a roll and says he's only going to get better. Judging by his performances on the oche of late, you would not doubt him for a second.
The Premier League continues as we head to Arena Birmingham on Thursday, April 25. You can also stay up to date with all the action by following us @SkySportsDarts and get all the latest news, previews and interviews www.skysports.com/darts