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GARY'S DOING IT BY THE BOOK.

Byline: CRAIG SWAN

GARY ANDERSON will use the motivational powers and magic memories of Scottish sporting hero George McNeill to fire his bid for PDC World Championship glory.

The Borders ace is poised to launch a serious bid on the pounds 200,000 title after a brilliant start to his campaign against Morihiro Hashimoto at London's Alexandra Palace last week.

Anderson sparkled with a flawless show, grabbing a three-dart average of over 103 without the loss of a single leg against the Japanese player. The tournament starts for real tomorrow when fellow Scot Robert Thornton heads up the second-round matches against Andy Hamilton but Anderson's display has caught the eye ahead of his clash against veteran Dennis Priestley on Wednesday.

Having returned to his Somerset base for the Christmas break he heads back to the Ally Pally today with added motivation in his locker.

Manager Tommy Gilmour ordered a copy of McNeill's book to be delivered to his client on Christmas Eve and he's poured the pages for inspiration.

Former sprinter McNeill was once the unofficial fastest man in the world and also had a short career as a professional footballer with Hibs, Morton and Stirling Albion.

He may now be an after-dinner and motivational speaker but Anderson has a much closer relationship having been pals with his kids and said: "George used to live at the back of my grandad's house in Tranent.

"I would kick around with his kids and I remember getting hooked on darts when I was there once.

"I was crushed up in his attic around a tiny TV on which myself and the boys watched Keith Deller beat Eric Bristow to win the World Championship in 1983. That was one of my first memories of watching darts and it came in George's loft.

"Just before Christmas, his book arrived on my doorstep. I think Tommy arranged for me to get it.

"I've read through it and it has given me some things to think about going back down to London."

Anderson has now moved up to ninth in the world rankings and looks a good bet to feature in next year's prestigious Premier League.

Success at the Ally Pally would go a long way to making that possible and he said: "I've not looked at the draw because that is not the way that I do it, but I don't fear anyone out there.

"When I have got my game going and the darts are flowing I can beat anyone."

CAPTION(S):

By George: Gary Anderson read up on McNeill's book for inspiration at the Ally Pally Mr Motivator: McNeill delivers one of his talks
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Title Annotation:Sport
Publication:Sunday Mail (Glasgow, Scotland)
Date:Dec 26, 2010
Words:441
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