Ally Pally finalist fears getting a*** kicked by Gary Anderson after scare

Simon Whitlock admits he fears he is set for a Gary Anderson pummelling in the Paddy Power World Darts Championship.

Whitlock, 54, struggled his way through his first round clash against Paolo Nebrida from the Philipines at Alexandra Palace. The Australian had to come from behind to overcome the South East Asian, who roared into a one set lead by whitewashing the 2008 finalist.

Whitlock managed to find his better form by getting himself into a 2-1 lead, but Nebrida came roaring back to force a deciding set. However, the Wizard managed to use his experience to prevail in the final set. While he may have secured the victory, Whitlock admitted he is fearing his second round clash against Anderson.

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When asked what was going through his mind in his post-match press conference, he said: “I’m thinking I’m going to get my arse kicked.

“But, you know, there is always more in the tank. I need the 180s to start happening, because I didn’t hit many tonight.

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“It was two I think – it’s ridiculous. I’m a big 180 hitter and they weren’t there. But, tomorrow is a different day. Maybe they’ll turn up, maybe I’ll turn up, and we’ll have a great game."

It was the latest stuttering performance of what is proving to be a difficult year for Whitlock. Nevertheless, you would not need to say that to the Wizard, as he is the first to admit magic has been in short supply for him this year.

“I’ll put that down to messing with darts, barrels, flights, stems, everything," he said, when asked about why he has been struggling this year. "I’m worse than Peter Wright now, bless him. But, yeah, I’m really bad. I just can’t settle with something.

When asked about his performance, he added: “I’m not that positive to be honest. I mean that wasn’t great, average 90. But I got the win and I dug dep, threw some big darts at the right time, so I’ve got a few positives going into tomorrow."

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