An ex-pat who relocated to Australia for work, Peter Willmott has quietly gone about the business of darts and slowly but surely is making in-roads within the local scene.
Originally from Hale, Cheshire (a beautiful county in the UK just south of Manchester), he began playing in Queensland, a true hotbed of tungsten throwers, and cut his teeth in many of the Pine Rivers tournaments, mainly the Satellite Tour a couple of years ago, where he won a couple and first introduced himself to the Australian darting scene.
“There's a lot of good players in Brisbane and Queensland in general,” he said before continuing: “But here in NSW there are many very good players I've seen also in just the past few events so far.
“There might be more players in Queensland as a rule but the standard here is very high also.” Moving from the Sunshine State to the Newcastle area, this time with wife Elizabeth's work, he still believes Qld tournaments are harder to win: “With larger entries at Pine Rivers, from when I played there, you probably get a few more higher ranked players competing and if NSW were to grow a bit more, I'm not sure how that would work, they would certainly be up there but I have to say there are a few more top quality players up there.”
Willmott is a silky smooth left-hander at the Oche and certainly doesn't look out of place, reaching the Final at one of the NSW DPA Satellite tournaments in 2021 so far where he readily admits he wasn't at his best: “To be fair I didn't play well in the Final, I tanked a bit.
“In saying that, it's always good to reach a Semi-Final or Final and you have to take each game as it comes at the day and I'll be doing my best to put that right in the upcoming events.”
Being on the inside of both camps, he believes the production line of players is going well: “There are some good young players up there but I've come up against a few here at Warilla (Bowls & Recreation Club) over the past few tournaments and the Youth Level is strong in both States.
“They're no mugs,” he says with a smile.
Of course it would be a dream to reach the World Series of Darts stage, postponed until 2022 sadly, but not so many would be watching him in the UK: “Of course it would be a dream come true to play on that stage but I think more people would be cheering me on here that back in England.
“It would be awesome and I would absolutely love it.
“Obviously, the family know a lot of ex-pats around the Brisbane area and they keep a track of what I'm doing and they would be nearly as excited as I would be to be honest.”
I'm certain Pete's immediate family would love to see him on that stage and without doubt daughters Bella & Tabby, his two biggest fans, would be cheering him on the way: “Our daughters are in Primary School and they follow me and always tell me to get a 9-darter when I'm leaving for tournaments.
“I haven't quite achieved that yet but fingers crossed,” he chuckles.
Peter comes across as a very mild mannered man, usually smiling and pleasant to chat with but underestimate his prowess at the Oche at your own peril.
Remember the name, you'll be hearing it a lot more often in the years to come.