Borland from superstar at Ally Pally to Super Ally
By Phil Lanning
WILLIE BORLAND is still pinching himself after going from superstar at the Ally Pally to Super Ally.
The East Calder kid has been in dreamland after hitting a historic nine-darter to beat Bradley Brooks and win his World Championship debut match on Friday night.
Since then the perfect leg has been viewed SIX MILLION times on YouTube and ‘Big Willie’ has been tweeted by Piers Morgan, Declan Rice, Laura Woods and Tim Vine as his Twitter account exploded by 15,000 followers in one hour.
But Borland, 25, admitted that speaking to his hero McCoist on TalkSport was the biggest buzz. He said: “I’m not the best speaker but I can certainly get used to the attention.
“Speaking to Ally McCoist topped the lot, definitely 100 per cent. I’ve grown up watching Rangers and he was a hero.
“It’s a dream come true getting all the messages. So many famous people have tweeted about the nine-darter and tweeted my name. I still think of myself as a nobody.
“It’s just unbelievable that people are recognising me. The way life is right now. Trending No.1 on Twitter is definitely up there with the best thing ever.
“I think my Twitter followers went up 15,000 in half an hour and now I’m at 25,000. It’s unbelievable.”
Borland now faces Ryan Searle tomorrow (Weds) and if he hits another perfect leg will win £25,000, a fan in the crowd would also win £25k and Selco’s Global’s Make Some Noise charity would also get £25k.
He added: “It would be good to get another nine-darter and an extra £50,000 at Christmas. It would set me up, I’m trying to put a deposit down on a house. So it’s proper life-changing money for me. Also that money for the charity as well and a lucky fan who also gets £25,000.
“I don’t have a season ticket at Rangers, I just concentrate at weekends on playing local tournaments to stay sharp and win extra cash.”
Borland has been stunned by the reaction to his nine-darter – especially the six million YouTube views. It’s also been stated as the fastest perfect leg ever at nine seconds.
He said: “It’s been the best weekend of my life so far. I’m speechless. “I’m not sure I’d be quicker than Ricky Evans, he’s rapid.
“I’ve not even replied to the majority of my friends yet. I had 450 messages on Facebook so I just had to put a message up to thank everybody for their support. It’s been crazy.
“I’ve watched it 500 times. On Saturday and Sunday I just kept watching it. Then my friends were sending me videos from the local pubs when I hit it. I just kept looking and saying: ‘wow, that’s me!’
“Obviously nine-darters are hard to hit. I’ll mainly be focused on winning the game but if I can do it again, it would be life-changing for me and a fan to win that money.”
He also hopes that the English crowd will stay on his side for the clash with Searle because if he hits another perfect leg, one fan could win that £25k.
He added: “Ryan is probably one of the most on-form players on the Tour at the moment. I’m expecting a hard game. I know how good he is.
“I’ll play my game and put him under as much pressure as I can. Hopefully that will help me go on and win the game.
“The crowd giving my stick doesn’t really bother me. Them booing just gives me fuel to go on and do well.
“I think they’ll be more on my side now knowing that if I hit a nine-darter one fan in the crowd would win £25,000!”
Images by Taylor Lanning.