Anderson hoping to compete
World number four believes he will recover from injury in time
Last Updated: 18/07/12 12:13pm
Gary Anderson: Hopeful of being fit for next week's World Matchplay
Gary Anderson remains hopeful of being fit to play in next week's World Matchplay tournament at Blackpool's Winter Gardens.
The Scot pulled out of the recent German Darts Championship after struggling to focus through his left eye, missing the subsequent Players Championships in Crawley and the European Darts Open in Dusseldorf.
The 41-year-old has been undergoing treatment and specialists hope he can recover without needing an operation on the tear duct in his eye.
"I'm still taking eye drops and will keep doing so until the problem clears up, and I'll hopefully be fine for the World Matchplay."
Gary Anderson Quotes of the week
Anderson admits the injury has taken its toll, although he is staying positive on his chances to competing in the World Matchplay.
"It's been a hard time but hopefully I'm on the road to recovery," said Anderson.
"My eyeball was drying up and every time I blinked it was like I was rubbing sandpaper over my eye.
"I'm still taking eye drops and will keep doing so until the problem clears up, and I'll hopefully be fine for the World Matchplay.
"I'd been struggling to focus with my left eye previously - and I block my right eye with my dart when I throw - but I'm getting back into my practice now and looking forward to getting to Blackpool."
Anderson will have an added incentive at this year's World Matchplay following the qualification of Michael Smith, who the former Premier League Darts champion has managed for the past 18 months.
Smith, 21, has continued his emergence this year by winning a second Players Championship title in January, and will play Raymond van Barneveld in the first round at the Winter Gardens.
"Michael's done well this year and I'm pleased that he's qualified," added Anderson, who is also mentoring another youngster, Adam Hunt.
"He's still finding his feet on the big stage and learning how to play in front of the television cameras, but if he settles down early in his match he has a great chance.
"He'll certainly give Raymond a hard game - I know how well he can play, and if he can produce that form on stage it would be no surprise if he wins."