“It’s anyone’s game.” That’s the forecast from Martin ‘Wolfie’ Adams ahead of his eagerly-awaited quarter-final clash with Jamie Hughes in the BDO World Championships at 3pm today (January 13).
Deeping legend Adams (60), a three-times champion who is making a record-breaking 24th consecutive appearance at the Lakeside Country Club in Frimley Greem, Surrey, is the fans favourite but the bookies have Hughes (30), from Tipton, as their slight favourite. He’s priced at 8/11 to win with Wolfie at 11/10. Hughes is seeded four and Adams five.
“I wouldn’t like to predict this one or indeed any of the quarter-final games for that matter,” said Adams. “When you get down to the last eight it’s anyone’s game. Any one of the eight players left could go all the way. That’s why I love darts - because it’s so unpredictable.
“It just depends how you feel on the day.”
And Wolfie hopes he’ll be feeling a lot better than he did in the previous round on Wednesday afternoon when he had to overcome a hot flush before seeing off Canadian Jeff Smith 4-1.
Wolfie had the Lakeside crowd roaring as he reached the last eight for the 16th time but as he looked to seal the match in the fifth set, he was rocked by a side-effect of his treatment for prostate cancer.
“I had a hot flush up there and I was hitting 60s and 40s,” said Adams. “As well as the radiotherapy I had hormone therapy but with the hormones, although it stopped back in November, it can take 12 months to get out of your system.
“I get hot flushes. Maybe they are trying to turn me into a woman!
“It has been the same on the practice board and the only way you can deal with it is to keep throwing and hope that as it subsides the darts start coming together again.
“It is one of those things and I was grateful to get through to the quarter-finals.
“If I am lucky enough to win a game of darts, I am happy. If I lose, I lose. I have a massively different perspective on things now. What is more important - my health or a game of darts? My health.”
Adams received the good news in November that he had been given ‘as good an all-clear as you can get’ and he’s really enjoying his game again.
“After learning I’d got prostate cancer the motivation and concentration sort of disappeared,” he said.
“For three or four months, I hardly threw darts in practice. I would just turn up at an event, then just kind of hit and hope.
“If it went well, it went well - if it went bad, it went bad. You just shrug your shoulders and move on.
“I had no motivation to practise at all.
“But that was last year. Now the focus is on winning another title. I’m still hungry for that fourth title and I still want to go on and break Eric’s record.”
Eric Bristow has won the championship five times, Raymond van Barneveld four times and Adams three times (2007, 2010 and 2011).