Gilbert’s Gazette: In The Winners Circle

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DARTS WORLD are delighted to introduce our latest columnist. Recent Women’s Series Winner and England International Natalie Gilbert. Natalie made her debut in Darts World 584

After coming to the game later than most, and in highly unusual circumstances, Natalie is currently ranked no.9  in the world by the PDC. She will offer her own unique perspective on life as a female touring darts player: 

“As some of you may now know, if you caught my emotional interview after my Women’s Series win, 2023 has been a roller coaster of a year in so many ways. 

I suppose I should have known, the back end of 2022 was mixed up enough! I had a fabulous closing WDF weekend in The Netherlands, reaching the final of the World Open, and the Semi final of the esteemed World Masters, yet somehow, I had missed out on qualifying for the World championships at Lakeside. To have come so close and not quite made it was a very disappointing close to my second full year as a touring player.

The PDC Women’s Series had, up to event 24 at least, proven another hit and miss affair. Every weekend seemed to have highs and lows and, to be honest, this season I was getting pretty sick of the lows. 

Not to dwell on the downsides. Over the last 12 months I had also been fortunate enough to become sponsored by Red Dragon Darts to complement being assisted and managed by Will Adamson (The Cleveland Arms) and have seemed to assemble a small, tight support team. They certainly all believed in me, even when I struggled and doubted myself.

Upon reflection I had been processing a dealing with bereavement and, as many of you will know, not all the consequences are conscious or obvious. I mentioned in my post victory interview there was a personal moment where something lifted, changed and perhaps enabled me to move forward.

On a more practical level I was also given some practice homework to do and, despite it being demanding and frustrating at times, I stuck it through and, looking back at my semi final and final performances, it has paid huge dividends.

The Women’s PDC season does not return until next March so I shall be seeking as many opportunities to enjoy darts and develop my game, as we plot and plan for 2024 and beyond.”

——ENDS—–

Natalie Gilbert is a touring professional playing across all available codes and formats. She is a PDC Women’s Series Winner, England International and WDF Major Open finalist. She is sponsored and supported by Red Dragon Darts.

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