Video: Justin Pipe reaches world's top ten after Players Championship run
Justin Pipe said the delight of reaching the world's top ten helped ease the disappointment of semi-final defeat in the Cash Converters Players Championship.
Pipe reached his first ever major televised semi yesterday after beating Mervyn King 10-7 in their afternoon quarter-final at the impressive Butlins Minehead arena.
Cheered on by a huge home crowd of 4,000, the Somerset pro met Belgian youngster Kim Huybrechts in the first semi-final but was beaten 11-6.
But his performances in front of the ITV4 cameras over the three days were good enough for him to climb to No.9 in the PDC's world rankings.
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Pipe, from North Curry near Taunton, had set a personal target for 2012 to get into the world's top ten, and he was thrilled to achieve his goal just a fortnight before the start of the World Championships.
"If you'd me I was going to make a semi-final this weekend on Friday, I would have snapped your hand off," said Pipe in an exclusive video interview with This is Somerset last night.
"I'm No.9 in the world now, so it's brilliant, fantastic. I'm really happy and I'm not going to be disappointed.
"I feel I lost the first session, rather than Kim winning it. But Kim took his chances and that's what this game is about. If you take your chances, you're going to win.
"This is a fantastic result for me to take into the World Championships, and the same for Kim. We can both go to the Worlds and hopefully prove that we can do this again."
Pipe said he'd learned from his previous two major quarter-final exits, and that he'll also learn from the semi-final experience.
"It's my own fault, I was far too relaxed on the first three or four legs," he said.
"Those legs are so important to win, and not miss your doubles, and perhaps that might have made a bit of a difference if I had taken those first couple of legs.
"It is a massive learning curve and the right man won. I think Kim played better than me and deserved to win.
"I can focus on what I've done wrong. In the next TV major, if I'm in that position again, I'll step back and think 'come on, in the Cash Converters you lost it', so push on and concentrate. Every dart is so vital."
With the target of reaching the world's top ten ticked off the checklist, Pipe was asked what his goals would be for 2013.
"Top four and ask Uncle Barry if I can have a Premier League place!" he joked.
"All I can do is try to climb and get as high as I possibly can. I'm over the moon at being at No.9, it's just fantastic."
Pipe's run to the semi-finals started with a 6-3 win over Colin Osborne in the first round on Friday afternoon. He followed that with a 10-8 victory against Brendan Dolan and the 10-7 success against King.
CASH CONVERTERS PLAYERS CHAMPIONSHIP FINALS - IN PICTURES