DARYL GURNEY has set his sights on a Premier League homecoming in Belfast next week after kick-starting his season with victory over Michael van Gerwen.
Gurney enjoyed a memorable win over World Champion Van Gerwen in Berlin last Thursday to boost his chances of avoiding elimination on Judgement Night in Rotterdam.
The Northern Irish ace will take on Raymond van Barneveld on Wednesday in the first of two nights at Rotterdam Ahoy, in a clash which could secure his Premier League survival.
The Players Championship Finals winner also plays Mensur Suljovic in Rotterdam, on Thursday, and is hoping to gain enough points to secure his spot at The SSE Arena on April 4 to begin the second half of the season.
"I'm desperate to play in Belfast," admitted Gurney. "I only get to play there once a year, so I'd be really disappointed if I didn't make Belfast.
"The atmosphere last year was brilliant, probably one of the best walk-ons that I've had - the place was going mad. Belfast will bouncing and hopefully I get that far.
"That was the main thing this season and if I can get to play in Belfast then I've got past elimination I can then try to push to get into the top four."
Gurney had seen his Premier League hopes take a blow when he followed up a 7-1 loss to Rob Cross in Exeter with a whitewash defeat against James Wade in Aberdeen.
He has since drawn with Peter Wright before winning 7-5 against Van Gerwen last Thursday, and is pleased with his progression.
"I've got so many gears left in me, I'm still not playing my best," he adds. "I can't wait until I play proper darts, and then I'll be even harder to beat!
"The results against James and Rob were disappointing. I was awful against Rob, I played well against James but he just destroyed me and was in one of those moods.
"Against Michael, I was fighting myself all the way through the game, pulling my first dart low, but he wasn't on his game and I hung in there and took my chances.
"I'm still trying to build up to a good Daryl Gurney, not the one that's fighting with myself and struggling the whole way through these games.
"I'm still learning. I've been playing in the PDC for six years but I've only been at the top of the game for the last two years, so I haven't been around that long.
"I'm still trying to get back to the Daryl Gurney of 2017, where I was wanting to eat all these players alive."
Gurney knows that he could secure his own survival, and possibly condemn Van Barneveld to elimination in his final season before retirement, in Wednesday's clash, and is aiming to claim a crucial win.
"It's going to be difficult because the whole crowd will be behind Raymond," Gurney said. "I might need earplugs but I think even they wouldn't drown them out.
"I'm looking forward to the game and it will be a great occasion. I'll enjoy his walk-on because that will be special, but then I've got to focus on my game and trying to get the result."
Tickets for the Premier League's visit to The SSE Arena in Belfast on April 4 are still available through ssearenabelfast.com or by calling 028 9073 9074.