Toast of Teesside ‘Duzza’ it again!

Proud Teessider Glen Durrant now wants to go for third straight World darts title…

Glen Durrant has ruled out any temptation to chase the Premier League darts dream – and has instead set his sights on winning the PDO title for a third year.

Durrant, from Grangetown in Middlesbrough, beat Mark McGeeney 7-6 in a thrilling PDO darts world final to retain the title he won at the Lakeside in 2017.

The 47-year-old top seed, known affectionately as “Duzza”, came from behind in a thrilling finale against Mark McGeeney – who’d missed two darts for the title – to retain his crown and bring the trophy back to Teesside again.

Durant told Tees Life: “I never thought it’d be better than the first one – the emotion and excitement of winning it for the first time – but the competition was stronger this year, I could and should have been out in the quarter-final.

“It’s just the whole story. Everyone wants to talk about this year’s final. Nobody wanted to talk about the final last year, and the stories I’ve heard about people screaming at the TV, some not even being able to watch it.

“It’s been a brilliant experience since I won it. I’ve just had the most amazing day at the Boro game – people coming up wanting to shake my hands, meeting (the owner) Steve Gibson, it was just the most amazing day and it was very humbling.”

Following his victory, Durrant had been widely-tipped to make the step up to the Professional Darts Corporation (PDC), the richly-paid Premier League of darts.

But after picking up the £100,000 PDO prize for a second year running, Durrant now wants to do it again in 2019 while continuing his full-time job a housing estate manager.

“There’s always the temptation to go over,” he admitted. “But I signed a contract with the BDO and I enjoy my day job. It’s too much of a gamble to take.

“£100,000 to a man from Grangetown is a lot of money. I don’t worry about money now like I have all my life. The only ambition I have now is to win this trophy three times in a row.

“I’ve got a new direction now and I know where I’m going. I made some fundamental mistakes after winning it last year, I took too much on and I was just too busy. I still work 40 hours a week and I was going into schools, doing exhibitions events, I just tried to do too much and I’ve learned from that.”

We meet Durrant at North Ormesby Working Men’s Club, where the pride of Grangetown has plied his trade in more recent years.

“This is where I put the hard graft in,” he said. “I’ve had a lot of top local players, even football players, come in here wanting to challenge me. Nobody has beaten me yet.

“But the club is really good to me and have supported me all the way. I still turn up for them on a Thursday night. Grangetown St Mary’s Club is where it all started and I know they’re very proud of me too.

“I’m trying to promote Grangetown as much as I can. It gets a lot of unwarranted bad press. I’m Grangetown and proud of it.”

“Duzza” is certainly proud of Teesside – and Teesside is proud of him.