DartsMad.com – Scott Waites Interview

Edited 8th Nov 2011 – Scott Talks to DartsMad in the build up to the Grand Slam.

DM: Scott, with less than a week to go to the GSOD how is the defending Champ feeling, can you retain the title? When does work stop and the darts start?

SW: At the minute I’m a bit tired working and travelling to comps, and could have done with a couple of days off before the Grand Slam. I will be working all day Friday then driving down to Wolverhampton. 2hrs practice a night up to the Slam and the darts are going well so see what happens….

DM: Last time we spoke we established Wolfie as your Bogey player, you’ve since beaten him twice and gone on to win said tournaments, I’d like to say we motivated you! But it was nailed on really wasn’t it? Is there a feeling of relief, confidence?

SW: It was good to get past Wolfie and play proper darts against him for a change, I was more focused on the job in hand and prepared a little better and it seemed to work. Not sure it was nailed on but a win is a win, and I let him have the first set of the World Masters!

DM: You have an interesting group draw, (Scott Waites (1), Mark Walsh, Tony O’Shea & Michael van Gerwen) – Obviously you have had some tough battles with Tony in the past, does the prospect of van Gerwen and Walsh bother you?

SW: I don’t mind which dart player I play against, but I owe Michael one – he beat me in the group stage 3 years ago. I will do the same prep work for all the games. However, I wont be drinking with Tony before our match – I won’t make it to the stage..

DM: Looking a bit further ahead to Lakeside, presumably you have your sights firmly set on lifting the trophy, are you aware of playing Andy Boulton first up? The standout clash is Robbie Green V Darryl Fitton, neither player wants that first round do they?

SW: I saw the Lakeside draw, I was hoping everyone would be running scared of me!, there is a few tasty first round games Jon Boy and Martin Atkins both play for Yorkshire and pairs together on the circuit, so that one will be fun.

DM: Finally last time we spoke, about your practise and No1. What level do you play at?! And has anything with your game changed to facilitate recent success?

SW: I play on level 5 for the first hour (mine is an old version) then I play level 6 for a laugh, but I end up unplugging it when it doesn’t throw under a 12 dart leg.

DM: We must have a newer version because I play level 5 and I’m rubbish! Thanks for taking time out to speak to us and good luck at the GSOD.

SW: Cheers

Original Interview August 2011

The invitations and qualification criteria for the 2011 Grand Slam of Darts were published a couple of weeks ago, therefore it seems perfect timing to chat to current GSOD champion Scott Waites aka Scotty 2 Hotty.

DM: I always get the negative elements of an interview over with first, so erm….what happened in Belgium the other weekend? (Scott lost in the first round of this years Belgium Darts Open)

SW: Bad day at the office! I played a guy top of his game, I didn’t do a lot wrong – he just never missed anything.

DM: Obviously the big news recently was Olly Croft being voted off the board at the BDO AGM, what are your feelings on this and the politics within darts in general?

SW: I am not sure at the minute how it will affect the BDO, but I believe darts is the same everywhere and whether I play BDO or PDC events, I don’t look too much at the politics and treat it as just playing the game I love.

DM: How did you get involved with darts, is there a family history to the game? At what point did you realise that you had the potential to play at the highest level?

SW: My dad used to play darts when I was a kid and was quite good, I first got involved playing for our local pub, then when I was in my early 20’s I beat a few top players and took it from there. But never thought I would be playing on TV.

DM: Did you come up with the ‘Scotty 2 Hotty’ nickname? And are you aware of the WWE wrestler with the same nickname?

SW: I used to go to a lot of Bradford Darts comps and the guy that ran it gave everyone a nickname and that was mine. Now it has stuck, I know about the wrestler…. but I can’t do the worm!

(DM: We didn’t know what the Worm was  click here to find out…..we think if Scott wins the GSOD this year he should consider it as part of the post match interview)

DM: What about Scott ‘The Woodcutter’ Waites?

SW: Not bad….but I don’t fancy being compared to another Woods! (Pecker)

DM: Obviously you will be defending your title at the Grand Slam of Darts this year, what is it about this tournament that seems to bring the best out in you?  To put it in some sort of context, you suffered 3 group stage defeats in 2007, reached the final two years later, and won the title the following year!

SW: Yes not bad by a joiner from Huddersfield, I just try my best, have got used to the big stage and just go out to enjoy myself and it seems to work.

DM: To come back from 0-8 and eventually win last year must be ranked alongside the greatest darting comebacks ever, where you aware of the James Wade’s mental health problems at the time of his capitulation?

SW: I am not sure of what James has gone through, so I cannot comment on it….all I know is that it was not affecting his game when he was 8-0 up.

DM: Yes that’s true, has winning the GSOD changed your life in anyway, for better or worse?

SW: Nothing has changed for me, I am the same person doing the same job etc. The only thing is I get recognised more now.

DM: So presumably you are still balancing darts with your full time employment as a carpenter/joiner?

SW: Yes its difficult sometimes but it seems to work for me.

DM: Mervyn King has recently been affected by tennis elbow, does the type of  work you do induce any injury/fatigue which hampers your throwing arm? or perhaps it is the opposite and keeps it well conditioned?

SW: I get cuts, burns on my hands get them covered in glue, silicone general dirt etc which does affect your natural grip on the dart, as such  I use finger grip wax which I feel helps.

DM: Full time employment obviously limits your practise time somewhat? Do you believe you could improve your game, given the opportunity to treat darts as a full time occupation?

SW: I am sure my game would get more consistent if I could just concentrate on playing darts.

DM: I agree, so what obstacles are stopping you from giving it a go then?

SW: I am quite old fashioned in the way of work and I believe that you should be able to pay all of your bills every month, the bit that’s left over I use for darts. I don’t want to put Sally or Michael in any danger of not having a roof over their heads, I have always said if I was a single man it would be a no brainer.  If I managed to get a sponsor to help cover the bills then I would consider having a go full time.

DM: The DartsMad.com ‘dartabase’ contains player head to head statistics, we had a trawl through your matches and it threw up some interesting/enviable records.

Waites v Anderson (2-2)
Waites v Barney (1-1)
Waites v Lewis (1-0)
Waites v Wade (2-1)

Is it simply a matter of competing amongst the best players in the world pushes you harder, which in turn makes you dig deeper and produce your very best?

SW: I think it is easier to play better players as you know what to expect and you know what level you have to play at to compete in the match.

DM: Our records did produce one interesting statistic, you have not managed to defeat Martin ‘Wolfie’ Adams in 7 times of asking, do you class him as your ‘bogey’ player?

SW: At the minute yes….I  try to hard to beat him, the tide will turn I just need to win one first.

DM: The Masters is just round the corner literally as it’s held in Hull east Yorkshire, does your preparation for major tournaments involve increased practise?

SW: I try to practice through the week and also still play in the local leagues, but when a major competition is coming up then I do try to put in a few more hours practice. But depending what the day at work has been like depends on the time practicing.

DM: Do you have a regular practise partner?

SW: No just play the laptop.

DM: That’s interesting do you use no1 or DartPro?  And what tungsten do you chuck?

SW: I use n01, my darts I have had for 15 years I got them free, as I used to order all the stems and flights for all the guys in our local pub. Since getting them I have never looked back, my signature darts are available from Red Dragon.

DM: You mentioned your partner Sally earlier, during televised tournaments we often see the camera panning on to Sally who (emotionally) seems to be throwing every dart with you. How important is this support?

SW: Sally has not been well over the last 18 months she has ME so things for us are not too good at the minute but she likes to come and watch, she says its harder to sit and watch than play. I keep saying she can swap places if she wants!

DM: Does Sally play the game?

SW: Two years ago I put me and sally into the mixed pairs on the Isle of Man we got to the quarter finals beating Darryl Fitton and Dee Bateman on the way, and I had one dart to get us on stage. Sally was panicking it was good fun but she is lucky if she gets 3 darts in the board…..

DM: I bet you thought you had got away with this question…..there has been much speculation of a Scott Waites move to the PDC. In a lot of peoples minds it is only a matter of time, but what do you think?

SW: I would like to have a go and try to compete with the lads in the PDC, but it would also be nice if I could win Lakeside first.

DM: Well thanks for taking the time out of your busy life to talk to us, would you please answer the DartsMad double 5 before you leave us. 10 quick fire questions, 5 darts questions followed by 5 non darts.

Darts used? – Penetrator 23g
Favourite Double or Out shot? – double 18 when it goes in!
Favourite venue – do you need ask? Wolverhampton Civic!
Favourite player past or present? – You have to admire Phil Taylor for his success and dedication to darts.
Who would your ideal partner be in a pro/celebrity tournament? – Peter Kay
Favourite band/singer – I like most music, but dont really have a favourite – I tend to listen to the radio
Favourite food – I do enjoy a good curry but you will have to travel to Bradford to find one.
Favourite drink – Tea milk no sugar. I’m sweet enough……or a nice cold pint of lager!!
Jeremy Clarkson, perceptive or prat? - I find him quite funny he doesn’t try to take life too serious.
Favourite comedian – Peter kay.