By Phil Lanning
DEVON PETERSEN vows no more trash talk as he bids to “light a stick of dynamite” on his 2021 season.
The potential-packed South African has spent the last few weeks building his backroom set-up with impressive new sponsorships, website and shirts.
But now Petersen, 34, says it’s down to real business to pick up results on the board in this weekend’s Super Series events in Niedernhausen.
The World No.25 admits to having a nightmare trip out to Germany, having to switch flights, airports, do extra Covid tests and not having a visa until midday today.
In a long chat with Oche, the kind-hearted star revealed how he won’t get involved in player verbals, working with charity Beam and credits the PDC and PDPA for how they looked after the players during the pandemic.
He said: “For me darts is a package, it’s not just turning up for tournaments. There’s so much work behind the scenes. To be honest I enjoy that but I now have the best structure in my career. Now I can just concentrate on delivering my best performances.
“Now it is time to light a stick of dynamite on my year. I need to find that spark in Germany to really get my results where I think they should be.
“I’m not going to sit here and say I’m going to do this or that. There’s been a lot of trash talk for a while in darts, I watch it all. While that is good for the fans and the media, it’s not good for players.
“I will hold my hands up and accept I got dragged into that last year. It was a bit tongue in cheek. But in a social media world, you can’t even say anything as a joke without it getting blown up into a war.
“It is a big waste of energy. It’s a boring cliche by saying that you do your talking on the stage. Phil Taylor would say that and it is very true.
“I need to deliver statements with the darts, it’s as simple as that.”
Petersen also admits it’s good that life is returning to some sort of normality and that he has witnessed first hand the hardship for some people after teaming up with charity Beam.
He added: “My heart goes out to all those families who have lost loved ones because of Covid-19. I also want to send strength to people who have been hit hard by the lockdowns.
“Many people have lost their jobs or cannot work. During the World Championships I worked with a charity in London called Beam (@wearebeam) who crowd-fund new career opportunities for people who have become homeless.
“Listening to some of the stories was really humbling and a reminder to me that we all have a duty to be kind and considerate to those less fortunate than ourselves.
“On the darts front, the PDC deserve huge credit for the way they handled professional darts within a global pandemic.
“During the first lockdown, the introduction of the Home Tour kept professionals playing and then, once darts could return, I believe the PDC maximised the number of tournaments that could realistically be staged.
“It was a relentless schedule for us, but we are all grateful. If there are no tournaments, we can’t make a living and I would also like to credit the Professional Darts Players Association who supported many players who fell on hard times.”
Petersen also has a classy new look and backers. He now has a new management team in Pinpointsport (@pinpointsport1) and fresh sponsors and shirts.
He continued: “I have been thrilled to announce two partnership deals recently. All of my clothing requirements, both playing shirts and my clothing range, will now be produced by Volcano Sports.
“Volcano are the most prominent manufacturer of quality sportswear back in my native South Africa. I have signed a long-term deal and I am very excited about what our partnership can achieve over the coming months. I’ve also signed a deal to work with Fitzdares (@Fitzdares), a prominent UK-based bookmaker who offer their customers a very personalised and traditional service.
“As part of our deal, I will provide Fitzdares customers with my views on matches at the darts majors throughout 2021, which is something I find very useful as it means I keep myself updated with how all the players are performing.
“The guys at Fitzdares are passionate about darts and I look forward to working with them throughout the year.
“All-in-all I am very happy with where I am with my game and career at the moment, here’s hoping that we can all return to some level of normality as the year progresses.”
For further info go to www.devonpetersen.co.uk
Images by Taylor Lanning.