JAMIE HUGHES is finally ready to give his injuries the elbow after an operation that saved his career.
The Tipton ace had been struggling with shooting pains in his right arm after winning his first-ever PDC major at the Czech Open just over two years ago.
Now Hughes, who revealed a new sponsorship with staycations.uk.com today, is ready to hit form again after surgery.
He admitted: “I originally had a shooting pain in my elbow on the follow-through when I was throwing. I imagine that was the bone moving and hitting a nerve or something.
“Sometimes if I moved my arm at speed I’d get a jarring in the elbow so obviously it was really affecting the way I was playing. Then it became mentally a big problem as well expecting the pain to happen.
“The surgeon said it had been probably getting worse for 10 years but wasn’t down to darts. But I don’t think throwing has helped it.
“I had the op in January but I think I came back a bit too early. People might not think that with the way I played in the UK Open and Super Series because I managed quite well. Now I’ve taken a backward step since then to let it rest.
“The operation was planned to be after the World Championship because that’s always the longest break without playing.
“It was a two-hour op. They cut down the ball of my elbow, then split my tricep muscle to gain access to the bone and then knocked the bone off with a hammer and chisel and sewed it back up.
“I had to rest it for a fortnight in a sling, then the stitches were taken out and I had physio. Now it’s just a matter of stretching it and keeping it moving.
“I’m still getting a little bit of pain but it’s not all the time, it’s weird. But I’m definitely on the mend and I know it will make a big difference to my game when I’m fully fit.
“The next tournament is in Niedernhausen in late April so I’ve got a good rest until then.”
Hughes, 35, is delighted with another new sponsorship deal teaming up with long-time pal midlands darts star Mart Greenwood.
Greenwood started up staycations.uk.com at the beginning of the pandemic and is the ideal website to find a holiday in the UK as travelling abroad remains an issue during Covid-19.
He said: “I’ve known Mart for sometime on the local darts scene in the midlands. So it’s a great tie-up for me and he’s starting this sort of business at the perfect time.”
Greenwood added: “I’ve known Jamie for a great deal of time and he’s a good player to sponsor to get our name out there.
“Obviously people are now looking to holiday in the UK and that may be the case for some time. That’s why staycations.uk.com is the place to start planning where you can go.”
By Phil Lanning
Picture by Taylor Lanning