Barney's bright future
Dutchman scoops new darts deal - hopes to fire back to the top
By Paul Higham. Last Updated: 06/05/09 11:26am
Barney: New darts
Raymond van Barneveld told skysports.com he hopes a new set of darts can turn his fortunes around, after the five-time world champion penned a lucrative new contract with Unicorn.
The big Dutchman was having his first practice with a new set of arrows at the Hilton Hotel in Sheffield as he was unveiled as the latest addition to the Unicorn stable.
Barney had become disillusioned with his old set of tungsten, and now hopes that the experts at Unicorn can provide him with a more potent set of weapons to dominate the oche once again.
"I gave them one of my old sets and they'll try and make things better for me," van Barneveld told skysports.com. "If you're not happy with the way you are playing you'll try everything to improve.
"Years ago I went to the store and I bought my old set, but who said it was the right choice for me?
"You never get to find out, so that's what we're going to find out over the next month or so. I've been doing ok but I need to improve on my doubles, I'm still a double disaster man!
"But now I know there's a company that will look after me that's the best in the world and will work with me to develop my darts and make them better and that gives me a good feeling."
Van Barneveld is also hoping to expand his popularity throughout the world, as he feels he has not got the credit, or exposure, a five-time world champion should have received over the years.
"I'm a five-time world champion and I've never had the chance to sell my darts worldwide. Now this is a great opportunity for me - if you are in Canada, Japan or Australia people can buy Raymond van Barneveld darts, and that's never happened before.
"The first contact came a few years ago but I had my other contracts, but in August last year I bought that contract out and now I'm looking forward to a good relationship."
After watching Barney sometimes look down on his luck in recent Premier League weeks, he certainly seemed to have a spring in his step with his new darts in hand, and he looks hungry once again.
"This four-year contract with Unicorn gives me a lot of opportunities and I'm delighted to set new targets for myself," he added.
"You need targets, I said three years ago when I joined the PDC that I wanted to beat Phil Taylor, I wanted a televised nine-darter, I wanted to be number one in the PDC and I wanted to be world champion, I did those four things in 14 months!
"So I need new goals, especially in the last 18 months when I've not been winning tournaments."
Now comes the hard work of practising and working out any adjustments that need making to his new custom-made arrows, although the early feeling looks good.
"Sometimes you need the time to practice with them, with all this travelling it's hard to find the time. But after the Premier League there's a gap of a few weeks when I can have a good practice with them.
"I've just had five minutes with them and I've hit two 180s already so that's not a bad start!"
Stay logged on to skysports.com for a forthcoming competition to win a set of Barney's new darts hot of fthe production line.