It has been four years since Paul Nicholson last graced the Alexandra Palace stage.
For years, the Geordie-Australian was a permanent fixture in televised darts competition. Brash, erratic, but also immensely talented. You wouldn't change the channel if 'The Asset' was on stage.
Nicholson is remembered for some of the most iconic moments in televised darts. His 'wave' to Phil Taylor after beating the 16-time world champion at the UK Open is still spoken about to this day, while the 2012 World Cup final between Nicholson's Australia and Taylor and Adrian Lewis' England was arguably the greatest in the history of the competition.
But a loss of form coupled with a number of wrist injuries saw Nicholson slide further and further down the rankings and for the last few years he has had to watch from the sidelines as the sport and the TV competitions continued to grow in stature, global reach and finance.
Nicholson even fell off the tour completely at the end of 2016, but instantly regained his Tour Card at 2017 Q-School.
Since then, he has quietly set about rebuilding his career and on Friday afternoon, 'The Asset' will make his long-awaited return to the World Championship stage.
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