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Declan aims for 180…but says 29 will do for now

Believe it or not Declan Rice has an unfulfilled ambition!

But given his achievement record not many would believe that it’s very far away despite it having nothing to do with football.

A massive darts fan, the Hammers crown jewel simply wants to hit 180 with 140 his highest score with three so far.

I’ve been throwing and throwing and trying and trying, but the closest I’ve come is a 140!” smiled Rice, who took part in the PDC’s ‘Darts At Home’ Footballers’ Special NHS fundraising event in May last year. 

“I started playing against my Dad and we put a board up in the house and started in the garage. Now we’ve got a games room with a proper mat, so I am practising hard, working on my consistency and I’m getting better.

“I love loads of the top players, Dave Chisnall, Michael van Gerwen and I really like Gerwyn Price, he’s really growing on me.

I was actually buzzing when he won the world title a couple of weeks back because he was a professional rugby player ten years ago and then he started playing darts so, if I keep throwing my arrows after my football career, you never know how far I could go…!”

However, right now his hobby has to take a big back seat to West Ham United in especially beating Burnley on Saturday afternoon.

After a great festive season and an FA Cup win at Stockport the team is on a roll and most things seem possible right now.

It’s likely the defensive midfielder will again be wearing the armband as Moyes likely returns to his regular first team.

The Irons go into the game unbeaten in four matches in all competitions, including the last three in the league, and the Hammer of the Year is determined to keep that run going at London Stadium this weekend.

Said Declan: “It’s also our first three o’clock kick-off since before the first lockdown last March, so that’s going to be a weird one, but we’re coming off a great run with three clean sheets and the wins at Everton and Stockport so everything is looking positive and if we win we go to 29 points which is massive for us, so we want to win.

“A lot of people used to look at us and think we’ll concede easy goals and cave in, but that’s not the case under this manager now. We’re much more solid, we look a threat and we know what Burnley are like and we know what they do.

“We were unlucky to lose to them at home in July when we absolutely battered them, so we’ll go into the game positive and see what we can do. We shouldn’t fear anyone.”


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About Hugh5outhon1895

Hugh Southon is a lifelong Iron and the founding editor of ClaretandHugh. He is a national newspaper journalist of many years experience and was Bobby Moore's 'ghost' writer during the great man's lifetime. He describes ClaretandHugh as "the Hammers daily newspaper!" Follow on Twitter @hughsouthon