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Jelle Klaasen keen to banish Premier League Darts demons in 2017

Jamie Shaw in PDC Darts News 1 Feb 2017
Klaasen is one of three Ducthmen in the 2017 Premier League field (credit:Lawrence Lustig/PDC)

Jelle Klaasen insists he is ready to make his presence felt in the 2017 Premier League as he returns to the competition after an eight-year absence.

The former Lakeside Champion is one of six wildcard picks in this year's elite ten-man invitational, having been rewarded for a swift rise back up the world rankings over the past 12 months.

The 32-year-old mustered just one win and four draws in his debut Premier League campaign back in 2009, finishing bottom of the table, but says he is now better prepared to take on the sport's elite.

"I've worked very hard to get back here," said Klaasen, an 80/1 outside with tournament sponsors Betway. "This is just a bonus and I want to perform well. 

"In my first season I don't think I was ready but you don't say no if you get offered a place in the Premier League.

"At that time the Premier League ruined my game because after that I didn't play well for a couple of years.

"It wasn't only because of the Premier League, though, I don't think I was good enough at the time.

"I think I'm a better player now, more consistent with better averages.

"I haven't been brilliant but to be in the world's top ten you have to at least be playing well.

World Championship and UK Open semi-finalist in 2016, Klaasen's last ranking title came in a Players Championship event in September 2015, while he is yet to lift a televised trophy in the PDC.

The world number nine is aiming to make further inroads in the PDC Order of Merit this season and feels he can use the Premier League as a springboard to success.

"I know I can do better than what I've been producing in the last few years," added 'The Cobra'.

"I was a bit unlucky when the World Championship started because I had tendonitis in my wrist, I did well to get to the Third Round through the pain but it's getting better now.

"It's important to make a good start but with the Premier League, you always have another chance next week.

"I feel confident I can play well every week and I'm looking forward to it."


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Jelle Klaasen keen to banish Premier League Darts demons in 2017

Jelle Klaasen insists he is ready to make his presence felt in the 2017 Premier League as he returns to the competition after an eight-year absence.

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