No boasting from Bully Boy: Smith content with quiet quest for title

Michael Smith

Michael Smith wants to keep letting his darts do the talking in his bid to be crowned William Hill World Darts Champion in the New Year.

Smith produced the highest average of the 2021/22 staging of the £2.5m tournament so far, 106.32, when he eased past Ron Meulenkamp in his opening match.

The 2019 runner-up then hit ten 180s and four ton-plus checkouts in a 4-2 third round victory against William O’Connor.

But Smith is reluctant to talk up his chances of lifting the Sid Waddell Trophy ahead of his last 16 showdown with much-fancied Jonny Clayton on Wednesday evening. 

“I’ve played really well most of the time so far but I’m not setting the bar; I’m just playing my game,” said Smith. 

“I just play darts and don’t talk myself up. I’ll leave that to the likes of Michael van Gerwen, Peter Wright and Gerwyn Price.

“Jonny doesn’t do it either. He is a model professional. He has won four TV titles this year but he would never boast about that. 

“I’m here to play darts and compete. I’ll leave the talking to other people.  

“I really want another crack at the final. I want to do it as soon as possible. I might have another 20 World Championships ahead of me but I want to make an impact now.”

Jonny Clayton versus Michael Smith is one of three matches on Wednesday evening. 

Evening Session (1900 GMT)
1x Third Round, 2x Fourth Round

(R3) Gary Anderson v Ian White​
(R4) Gerwyn Price v Dirk van Duijvenbode
(R4) Jonny Clayton v Michael Smith