World Champion Peter Wright will make his return from gallstones surgery at this weekend’s Hungarian Darts Trophy, as the European Tour resumes in Budapest.
Wright was forced to miss August’s World Series of Darts treble-header in Australia and New Zealand to undergo further treatment on a gallstones issue that has plagued him since 2017.
The Scottish star played through the pain barrier at July’s Betfred World Matchplay, and he’s not featured since competing at Players Championship 24 on August 5.
However, Wright will be among the headline acts in a star-studded 48-player field from September 2-4 at the BOK Sportcsarnok, as he eyes a first PDC ranking title since February.
“I’ve missed darts. I’m excited to be back,” said Wright, who will take on Welsh star Jim Williams in his opener on Saturday evening.
“Unfortunately I had to miss the World Series and I was gutted for my fans, but I’m looking forward to Budapest.
“They have an amazing array of fans. They love their darts, they get behind everybody as well, so I’m really looking forward to it.”
Wright’s last big stage appearance saw him relinquish his World Matchplay crown at the Winter Gardens, following a dramatic quarter-final defeat against Dimitri Van den Bergh.
Wright had beaten Madars Razma and Krzysztof Ratajski to seal his spot in the last eight, before the Belgian produced a stunning late burst to deny his former mentor back-to-back titles in Blackpool.
“I’ve been in a lot of pain,” Wright revealed. “I said I was feeling fine at the World Matchplay, but deep down I wasn’t.
“The pain was so irritating and when you’re taking painkillers, you’re not going to be 100%. It happened in the UK Open and New York as well, so it was building up and getting worse.
“The surgeon said I should have had it out ten years ago, so I’m glad it’s gone now.
“I’m not sure whether I’m going to get demolished or if I’m going to hit the ground running [this weekend], so we’ll see how it goes.
“I’ve been on the board practising, but we all know that practice is totally different to playing on the big stage.”
Wright, who lifted his second World Championship title in January, is without a televised crown since his most recent Alexandra Palace triumph.
The 52-year-old also surrendered his world number spot to Gerwyn Price at the World Matchplay, but he’s confident of returning to the summit over the coming months.
“I feel positive for the future of my game,” added the Scot.
"Going into the next five or ten years, I feel really good. It feels like I’m starting afresh, so they [his rivals] should definitely be scared!
“I want to win titles and set myself new targets. I’d like to win the World Grand Prix and the Grand Slam of Darts for the first time.
“I also want to retain my title at the Players Championship Finals and then obviously retain the World Championship.
“That would bring me back to the world number one spot, so I will just concentrate on trying to win titles.”
Coverage of the Hungarian Darts Trophy will be streamed through DAZN for viewers in Germany, Austria and Switzerland and through PDCTV for subscribers in all other territories, as well as through bookmakers worldwide.
PDCTV Subscription options will include a £3.99 Event Pass & a £1.99 Day Pass.