Wolverhampton’s Wayne Jones will enter a “win win” situation if he can progress past Jerry Hendriks in the first round of the PDC World Championship.
‘The Wanderer,’ a semi-finalist in 2006, opens the Saturday afternoon session at the Alexandra Palace in London against the 24-year-old Dutchman, who is making his debut in the tournament.
But Jones’ first pressing concern is to equal his run from two years ago, as players must earn at least what they won two years ago or lose the difference with their ranking in the PDC Order of Merit.
In 2010, Jones beat Alex Roy 3-1 before he was whitewashed 4-0 by Simon Whitlock, who reached the final, earning him £10,000 which he will match with victory over Hendriks.
And with a potential second round clash with 15-time world champion Phil Taylor in the pipeline, Jones will play with freedom if that comes to pass in the knowledge his prize money won’t be hurt.
He said: “The most important thing is to win my first game, everything after that is a win-win situation. There are players defending a lot more than me, so I could move up the rankings.
“Jerry is a decent player, he’s certainly no mug, I have seen him around but never played him but it doesn’t matter whether I know them or not, it’s still going to be the same approach.
“It will be a case of walking up to that stage and, particularly in the first couple of minutes, hitting what I am going for, building up a good lead and staying ahead.
“If I have to win ugly, I will, if he’s not throwing well I have got to jump on him.”
Should Taylor beat Michael Mansell and Jones defeat Hendriks, the two would meet next Friday night with ‘the Power’ looking to get back on top.
Jones finally beat Taylor for the first time at the 15th time of asking at the non-televised Dutch Darts Masters in October and that has given the Wednesfield darter belief.
He said: “I don’t mind playing Phil in the second round, I have beaten him now so I know I can do it. It will be the same old scenario, if I turn up and play well I will stand a chance.
“I am more than capable of beating people and, if I could get past Phil, no one would be expecting it and, for my profile, it would be amazing.”