NATHAN ASPINALL is looking to continue his rise to the top of the sport as he makes his Betfred World Matchplay debut later this month, fresh from winning the US Darts Masters.
Aspinall continued his meteoric rise with a second successive televised title in Las Vegas last Saturday, defeating Rob Cross, Peter Wright and Michael Smith on the way.
The 27-year-old is dreaming of a hat-trick of TV crowns in Blackpool, but Aspinall explained the long-term aim is to establish himself among the sport's elite.
"Before the Worlds I was a nobody, now I'm living my dream," said Aspinall, who won his first PDC ranking title in September 2018.
"I feel like I'm proving my worth, but it's not easy - I work so, so hard and practice so much because I want to be a top player, I want to be talked about with the likes of Michael van Gerwen and Gary Anderson.
"Ultimately, I want to be a top sportsman in my field. I've started off well but there's a long way to go to the top.
"I was devastated with how I played on my Premier League night, I wanted to give a good impression of myself and I didn't do that.
"So I was very grateful to Barry Hearn and the PDC for giving me a second chance on the World Series; I loved every single minute of it and to come out on top of such a strong field is incredible.
"I've never played at that level before on stage so I'm happy to have showed everyone that I'm not a 'one hit wonder'."
The Betfred World Matchplay will be held from July 20-28 at The Winter Gardens, Blackpool.
Broadcast live on Sky Sports, the tournament will see 32 players competing across nine days.