GLEN DURRANT is determined to make the most of his Unibet Premier League debut in Glasgow on Thursday on the back of a 'magical month'.
Durrant lifted his third Lakeside Championship title in January, just four days before the start of UK Qualifying School where he secured his place on the PDC circuit for the next two years.
The Middlesbrough man wasted no time in making his mark on the ProTour, reaching the final of Players Championship 2 on Sunday, and is now preparing to star as the second Premier League Contender in Glasgow.
"I'm on cloud nine at the moment and I'm going to enjoy every second of the experience," said Durrant, who will face Players Champion Daryl Gurney live on Sky Sports.
"Just as I was about to head into a meeting at work I read that Gary Anderson had withdrawn but didn't think anything of it.
"During the meeting I could feel my phone doing some crazy things and when I came out my manager Mac Elkin told me 'you're in Glasgow next week', which was a surreal moment.
"To get that call was just the cherry on the cake of an amazing month, I don't think I could've written it any better.
"When I walk out on Thursday it will be up there with one of the best moments of my darts career and I want to give a great account of myself. If I don't enjoy it then I shouldn't be playing darts!
"Watching Chris Dobey's walk-on in Newcastle last week was an unbelievable, spine-tingling moment and it would mean the world to me if the crowd got behind me on Thursday.
"Daryl will give me an incredible tough game, he walloped me with a 114 average at an exhibition recently, but for me it's a real bonus to be playing in the Premier League and I'm going to grasp it with both hands."
Former Grand Slam of Darts quarter-finalist Durrant has enjoyed a whirlwind start to 2019, and tasted PDC ProTour action for the first time last weekend.
It was a disappointing start to PDC life for Durrant, who was edged out 6-5 by Alan Tabern in the opening round of Saturday's Players Championship 1, before bouncing back with a final berth in Sunday's event.
"I'll admit that elements of doubt started to creep in after I lost to Alan Tabern with a 99 average, it was a bit of a killer and I had a long night on Saturday thinking 'are people going to do this every week?'" Durrant continued.
"My first game on Sunday with rising star Madars Razma was very similar to the Tabern game but I learnt my lessons from day one and got through that one which was a relief.
"Playing Peter Wright felt great because it was the first time in a long time that I played a game where I was the underdog and I felt more relaxed and played my best darts.
"When I landed the 170 in the final I could hear a few gasps in the arena from those who were watching on the screens in there, which was a great moment but unfortunately I didn't quite get the win in the final.
"I definitely felt like I made a statement at the weekend; getting to a final cements the fact that I will bring something different to the party and that I can compete with the best.
"I found out that I was the most watched player of the weekend, which brought it home to me how much interest there is which is very flattering, but in another way I'm also looking forward to a time when the pressure is off me a bit."
Durrant pocketed £6,000 thanks to his run to the final of Players Championship 2, which has seen him elevated to 88th on the PDC Order of Merit after competing in just two events.
The 48-year-old took time to reflect on his hopes for the future both in and out of darts.
"I have to pinch myself when I think about how the last couple of months have gone for me, it's hard to imagine how things could've gone any better," Durrant added.
"I've made the decision to become a full-time professional dart player in 2019, and in March I will leave the company I have worked at for 30 years.
"When I finish working I've set out a plan to get myself fitter both physically and mentally. It will be nice to have more time to do things like going swimming and taking my wife out for dinner, as well as plenty of practise.
"I haven't got the natural talent that most of the other players have, I've got to where I am through hard work and dedication and that won't stop now.
"My number one goal is to play in Blackpool at the World Matchplay, my secondary objective is to play at Ally Pally and my third target is to win a ProTour or European Tour title which I came close to achieving already on Sunday.
"I also watched all the European Tour events on the PDC stream last year and I'd love to sample that atmosphere.
"I'm not looking back, the future is looking really bright for me at the moment and being the age I am I can appreciate it all,; I've had the best six to eight weeks of my life and I want it to continue."
Night Two of the Unibet Premier League in Glasgow will be shown live on Sky Sports, worldwide through the PDC's broadcast partners, and through PDCTV-HD for Rest of the World Subscribers.
Night Two - Thursday February 14
The SSE Hydro, Glasgow
Peter Wright v Michael Smith
Rob Cross v James Wade
Raymond van Barneveld v Gerwyn Price
Daryl Gurney v Glen Durrant
Mensur Suljovic v Michael van Gerwen
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