Max Hopp relishing World Matchplay debut in Blackpool

Max Hopp (Picture: PDC)
Max Hopp (Picture: PDC)

Max Hopp is determined to make his mark on his debut appearance at the BetVictor World Matchplay in Blackpool.

The German number one has enjoyed a successful year so far, claiming his first senior title at the German Darts Open in April, before reaching the quarter-finals of the bwin World Cup of Darts alongside Martin Schindler in June.

Hopp's win in Saarbrücken was a breakthrough moment in his career as he secured his place at the World Matchplay and put himself in pole position to qualify for the Unibet World Grand Prix and William Hill World Darts Championship.

Hopp, who will become the first Germany player to grace the famous Winter Gardens stage, told www.pdc.tv: "I'm really excited to be playing in Blackpool for the first time, I can't wait to play there," said Hopp, "When you see the TV tournaments it makes you think 'I want to be there next year' and now I want to make sure I take my chance and play my very best game.

"I've heard lots of good things about the venue - Paul Nicholson told me that when I walk out there I will be amazed by the place so I'm going to make sure I enjoy my experience.

"I am proud to be the first German to play at the World Matchplay and hopefully it will inspire Martin (Schindler) and the other German players so that we will see more of us in TV tournaments regularly in the future."

The former World Youth Champion made his TV debut at the 2013 World Championship at the age of just 16 and has since gone on to appear at Alexandra Palace on a further four occasions.

Hopp is yet to reach the last eight of a televised ranking event but believes the time is right to make an impression on the big stage.

"My form is in a good place at the moment but I know I can still do better," Hopp added.

"I'm happy with how far I've come so far but I'm hungry for more and I believe there are many more big nights to come from me."

"I know I have to work hard to reach my goals but I am willing to do it, I'm a big believer that when I do the right things and practice hard the success will come.

"I'm hungry to do more in the sport and I know I can do it, I'm very blessed to have made it this far but now I want to make the top 32.

"Sometimes I let myself down and play at a lower standard so now my challenge is to raise it and take my game to the  next level."

Ahead of his World Matchplay first round tie with Ian White, the German youngster is leaving no stone unturned in his preparation.

"I've got a good practice routine which I hope will bring me good results," said Hopp, who has a 5-1 winning record against White.

"I practice with Martin, play some sports, read books and watch TV series so I've got a good mix of practice, preparation and relaxation.

"I always have good games with Ian on the ProTour and the big stage, he beat me last time so I'm up for a bit of revenge and I'm looking forward to the game."

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