Interviewing Gerwyn “The Iceman” Price

SportsBoom’s voice of choice, Wade McElwain, grabbed a quick and insightful chat with one of darts’ most established names, Gerwyn “The Iceman” Price. In this 11-minute interview, the 2021 champion talked us through everything from his pre-game rituals to what it’s like competing at Alexander Palace, and his predictions for his tenth World Championship appearance.

Gerwyn Price
Wade McElwain

Written by: Wade McElwain

(Senior Sports Writer)

Last updated: 2023-11-30

5 minutes read

No easy draws

It’s instantly clear that Welsh champion Gerwyn is fired up and using that fire to fight the nerves. Being “a hundred percent” excited, Price admits he’s “a bit anxious” about who he’ll draw first round. “There’s no easy draws...just favourable draws,” he says.  

Gerwyn knows that “there’s no easy games”, but the pro has a plan up his sleeve…

“I’m doing a few exhibitions. Gonna keep practising and put the hard work in before it starts,” he reveals. “Whoever you’re gonna play is gonna be really tough, so you just need to put preparation in, make sure you’re ready for whoever’s thrown at you, and just give a hundred percent.” 

The athletic advantage

Gerwyn speaks with total certainty and respect for self-care as the only real way to gain a viable edge in darts competitions. “Trying to keep healthy and get to the gym as much as you can. Eating positively and healthy can certainly help when you get to the longer formats and you need that extra bit of energy that extra boost.”

Despite that, the former rugby pro doesn’t consider his pre-darts status as a celebrated athlete to give him any advantage over his opponents.

“It’s completely different playing on a rugby pitch and playing on the Ally Pally stage,” he says.

When asked later about how many darts players he thinks hit the gym, Gerwyn is confident that it’s “more than people would think”, though he’s also quick to state again that he doesn’t think there’s any exercising you can do to directly help you in darts.  

In fact, he warns that doing heavy weights can affect the way your darts fly. Gerwyn’s suggested exercises? “Cardio and light weights with more reps.” 

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Whoever you’re gonna play is gonna be really tough

Playing the Alexandra Palace

Maintaining a calm head when asked about the crazy energy of some stages, Gerwyn explains, “Every venue is different whether you’re in the Premier League or Alexander Palace is always unique.”

“Whenever I’m on stage, I’m probably in the zone and fully focused, so I don’t really take much notice of the crowd,” he says, when pushed for his wildest Ally Pally stories. And we can imagine how necessary that is, especially when “It’s always a different sort of crowd, a different atmosphere. People are there for Christmas do’s or a work party they’re all just there to enjoy themselves and not every one of them are darts fans.”

We can certainly believe that “the more you play in these events and the more rounds you get through, the easier it becomes.”

“I don’t really focus on anything other than the dartboard,” Gerwyn says, though has to admit that “sometimes you do feed off the energy.” 

Nicknames, music and rituals

Which came first, the nickname or the walk-on music? In Gerwyn’s case, he owes both to one of his mates. “Just after I won my tour card, a friend came up with the name ‘Iceman’ and chose the music, and I’ve stuck with it.”

But it’s not just Vanilla Ice’s “Ice Ice Baby”, music plays an important role in Price’s pre-match rituals…

“Before I play I’ll listen to the same music every single time,” he says, before confessing, “I’m a little bit superstitious when the album’s finished, I’ll just start from the beginning again.”

But it doesn’t stop with music for Gerwyn – like so many pros, he admits to his share of compulsive behaviours. “I’ll set up my darts and water bottle in a certain way on the table. It has to be the same distance…I have to have everything in the right place… if I have to take the right supplement and I haven’t, or if I wear the wrong socks, or change my top...then yeah, I start to think a bit too much.”

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Every venue is different whether you’re in the Premier League or Alexander Palace is always unique.

A sharp future

As far as Gerwyn’s concerned, he’s still new in the world of darts, and quick to deflect the title of “veteran”, despite his frequent wins and TV appearances.

“I’ve only been playing nine years, man. These boys have been playing 20, 30 years,” he says, moving on to admit that he still has “a lot more to offer.”

Gerwyn insists his game is still improving and suddenly we’re on the very edge of our seats for his next performance. Quick to show his humility, Gerwyn turns the spotlight on some of the sports' other rising talent, then delivers a powerful reminder of how critical consistency is to success.

As far as he’s concerned, no new tech innovations could ever hold a candle to the importance of consistency (and thanks to his superstitions, he outright says he’ll “never change” from his trusty 23-gram, 95% tungsten darts).

The only contender for consistency in Price’s eyes, it seems, is the ability to adapt when you’re not hitting your potential. “Either you throw a little bit quicker, or a bit harder, or a different shape,” – whatever it takes to “get yourself back into your rhythm”, though it’s tough to articulate the largely intuitive way he does this.

As with so many things, this intuition “just comes with experience”.

Capping off the interview, The Iceman gives us an insight into how he sees tournaments and his predictions for the upcoming Championships…

“I sort of break it down to two tournaments, the first before Christmas - get through that one and then it really starts in the new year. I’m confident with my game, but there’s a lot of good players who could win, even those outside the top eight, top 16 in the world, anybody can win.” 

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I’ve only been playing nine years, man. These boys have been playing 20, 30 years...I still have a lot more to offer.

Wade McElwain

Wade McElwain

Wade McElwain is our Mr. NFL, a bona fide North American sports nut who knows about NBA, NHL, MLB, PGA plus MMA boxing and more. Originally from Canada, Wade is also an international award-winning stand-up comedian; host of numerous TV game shows; and a TV producer & writer. He also runs NFL in London-the largest NFL fan group in Europe, and has hosted NFL events at Wembley and around the world. Yes, he lives alone and does nothing but watch sports.

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