2024 UK Open: Reigning Champion Andrew Gilding is Hungry for Revenge Against Luke Littler

Defending UK Open champion Andrew Gilding impressed with a resilient 10-7 victory over Josh Payne in the fourth round at Butlin's Minehead. Despite the pressure, Gilding remained composed, reflecting on his surprise at being the man to open the evening’s session on the mainstage, also expressing eagerness for redemption against Luke Littler in the next round.

Louis Hobbs
Louis Hobbs

Last Updated: 2024-03-01

Wade McElwain

4 minutes read

Champion Goldfinger Returns to Minehead

Returning to Butlin's Minehead as the reigning champion, Andrew Gilding showcased his mastery on the main stage with a stellar performance in the fourth round. Despite the pressure of defending his title, Gilding demonstrated remarkable composure as he secured a hard-fought 10-7 triumph over Josh Payne. 


With each dart, Gilding exemplified his prowess, navigating through the tense moments of the match with precision and determination. As the crowd cheered on, Gilding's presence on the main stage radiated confidence, reflecting his seasoned experience and skill. 


Following his victory, Gilding offered insights into his mindset, acknowledging his nerves amidst the new experience of defending a major title. "I was pretty nervous. It's a new experience for me," Gilding confessed. "I've never won a major or any tournament before and certainly not defended one." Despite the weight of expectations, Gilding's performance on the main stage reaffirmed his status as a formidable contender in the darting world.

Not Used to the Spotlight

The reigning UK Open champion found himself in an unexpected position as he stepped onto the big stage for the opening match, despite holding the prestigious title. In a candid expression of his thoughts, Gilding admitted that he was surprised by the opportunity, hinting at a sense of disbelief that he, as a relatively lesser-known player, would be granted such a prominent spot. 


Reflecting on this, Gilding's comments suggest a humility and modesty that belies his status as the defending champion. "I love to go on the big stage. I don't usually get the first game on the big stage," Gilding confessed, implying a sense of gratitude and appreciation for the opportunity, despite his initial disbelief. 

Andrew ‘Elite’ Gilding

Despite the pressure, he remained optimistic about his chances, highlighting the rarity of defending the title. "If I defend the title this year, I’ll be in a group of only four players to do it before. If that was to happen, I’ll get ‘elite’ printed on my shirt," Gilding shared.

Revenge Against the Teenage Superstar

Looking ahead with determination and resolve, Gilding voiced his eagerness for a rematch against Luke Littler, emphasising his desire for redemption. "I'd like to play Luke [Littler] again. Bring on Luke again. I want another rematch," Gilding asserted with unwavering confidence. 



Image credit: PDC


His eagerness to face Littler again underscores his willingness to confront challenges head-on and his refusal to shy away from formidable opponents. Despite Littler having previously knocked him out of the World Championships last year, Gilding's determination to seek redemption shines through. 


Anticipating the prospect of another thrilling encounter on the darting stage, Gilding's eagerness reflects his competitive spirit and his unwavering commitment to excel, regardless of past setbacks. This desire for revenge against the 17-year-old prodigy adds an extra layer of intrigue to Gilding's journey, highlighting his resilience and his relentless pursuit of success in the world of darts.

Louis Hobbs
Louis HobbsLead Journalist

Meet Louis Hobbs, our esteemed authority on all matters sports-related. With a wealth of knowledge and experience, Louis effortlessly emerges as our go-to expert. His particular expertise in the realms of darts and snooker sets him apart and brings a level of insight that goes beyond the ordinary. Louis also holds a deep affection for all things related to US sports, with a special emphasis on basketball and American football, which stand out as his particular favorites. His content may not resonate with you, if you don't consider Lamar Jackson the most skilled player in the NFL.