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Updated: 23 min 30 sec ago

A Real Bonanza for Mike and Mathers

2017 PDC World Championships Australian representative GG Mathers of Team Rebel will be returning to the World Series of Darts stage in 2018, but this time in his home state’s debut event of the series after he overcame David Platt in the second qualifier for the Brisbane event.
Earlier in the day the board finals were taken out by Barry Gardner (5-3 over Shane Wolter), Mal Cuming (5-3 over Mick Lavey), Brendon McClausland (5-3 over Mat Leahy), GG Mathers (over Steve Fitzpatrick), James Bailey (5-2 over James Doherty), 8 Marland (5-3 over Cody Harris), David Platt (5-0 over Craig Prizeman) and Jack Devries (5-4 over Jeremy Fagg.)
The quarter final affairs were very different affairs with Bailey defeating Marland in the ninth and final leg whilst GG Mathers defeated McClausland 5-0. Cuming defeated Gardner 5-3 to make his second semi final of the day and David Platt securing his match 5-2 over Jack Devries.
It was the two losing finalists from Sunday’s qualifiers that made it to the final after Mathers defeated Cuming 5-1 in the semi final and Platt eliminated James Bailey, 5-3 being that final score.
In the final the first leg saw Platt have a dart at breaking his opponent but he missed the early chance and sitting on 10 watched as Mathers secured the leg with his last dart in hand. Platt then took an early lead on his own throw but Mathers was able to hit a 140 to move to 66 although he was not able to convert on his next visit and this time Platt was able to hold the leg with two darts collecting the required 100.
A 140 opening from GG in the next leg saw him open up his own early lead. Within 12 darts he had shots at doubles for the leg and although he did not make them on his first visit Mathers was well enough ahead to come back again and secure the leg with his first dart of the next visit. GG edged slightly ahead after two visits each on the next leg but was not able to hold it as both players sat on 181. With a 133 Platt moved into favouritism for the leg and he took on his next visit to the oche. The match was level after four legs.
Good scoring from both players in the next leg soon sat them on check outs. GG missed out on 129 and Platt also missed with his chance of 147. The 24 Mathers had left was cleaned up on his next visit to take a lead once more. In leg 6 Platt took a comfortable lead and a 180 left him on 20. Despite his opponent gaining 180 as well it looked as though Platt would take the leg but he missed out on the next visit and Mathers took full advantage at his next time on the oche to move to a two leg lead for the first time in the match, 4 legs to 2.
With GG on 70 Platt chased a 130 check out to break straight back but left tops only to watch Mathers take out the required 70 to go 5-2 up in the match. A 140 start on his throw gave Platt some confidence and another similar visit later in the leg moved him to a 120 Shanghai target. Platt had two mote unsuccessful visits before finally winning the leg. It was 5-3 to Mathers as he had the throw for the match. Some early heavy scoring in the leg gave Mathers the upper hand and despite missing out on a 167 check out he was able to come up on the next visit and throw his third dart for the match. He was unable to convert but with Platt unable to score the 126 required Mathers took out the final with his next dart.
For Platt it was his second loss in the final of the Brisbane Qualifiers in two days whilst Mathers made amends for his loss in the first qualifying final for the Melbourne Darts ANZ World Series of Darts event.

A Real Bonanza for Mike
Mike Bonser was a popular winner of the second qualification tournament for Darts ANZ World Series of Darts Melbourne event as he overcame Mal Cuming 6-3 in the final.
Earlier in the day David Platt had lost to Bonser in the board final and fellow Perth Premier League player Barry Gardner had lost to Cuming at the same time. Other winners of board finals included James Bailey (over Lucas Cameron), Loz Ryder (over Ray O’Donnell), Stephen Schmitt (over John Riley), Dave Marland (over Mick Lacey), Paul Cotton (over Jack Sinclair) and Stefan Cubrolvic (over Craig Prizeman.)
The last eight saw Bonser defeat James Bailey 5-2 and Cuming beat Dave Marland 5-4. There opponents in the semis were Paul Cotton (who won 5-4 over Stehan Cubrolvic) and Stephen Schmitt (5-4 over Loz Ryder.) The semis both finished 5-2 (Bonser over Schmitt and Cuming over Cotton.)
In the final it was Bonser who opened first but Cuming broke straight away. He was unable to hold throw in the next leg despite having multiple darts to close the leg and the match was back on throw after two legs. The next leg saw Bonser hold throw although it took him three visits to check it out. He then had one dart at tops for the next leg but did not hit the target and Cumins pounced on his next visit to the Oche to tie the match up once more.
Bonser held throw in the fifth leg hitting double 8 with his 16th dart. It then took Cuming 14 darts to move the match back into parity. Leg seven was critical as both player had multiple chances at the leg but in the end Bonser held his nerve, and his throw to move out to a lead he would never sacrifice. Despite a maximum in the next leg from Cuming, Bonser’s consistent high scoring in the leg put him in good stead after Cuming failed to convert 94. Bonser took out the required 50 with his last dart in hand to lead 5-3 and move to within a leg of the match. In leg 9 Bonser did not give Cuming a shot at a check out and with a double ten was able to secure the match 6-3 and qualification for Melbourne.
Having been such a big part of the game of darts in NSW, Bonser’s win was popular amongst the local NSW players.

Brisbane Darts Masters Qualifier 2 Latest

The Draw for the Brisbane Darts Masters Qualifier 2 has been completed

Board 1
Kevin Luland v Bye
Shane Wolter v Bye
Mark Smyth v Mike Bonser
Lucas Cameron v Barry Gardner

Board 2
Jack Sinclair v Paul Cotton
Nathan Simpson v Mal Cuming
John Bunyard v Colin Edwards
Mick Lacey v Stefan Cubrilovic

Board 3
Sean Hafkenscheid v Stephan Schmitt
Loz Ryder v Brendan McClaussland
Lucas Gray v John Riley
Mat Leahy v Mark Taafe

Board 4
Terrance Insley v GG Mathers
Sonny Turner v Greg Major
Pat Dargan v Steve Fitzpatrick
Darren Wolter Gumley v Jen Lange

Board 5
Matt Clarke v James Bailey
Koha Kokiri v Ray O'Donnell
Leanne Shooter v Alex Evans
Theo Greyling v James Doherty

Board 6
Anton Soc v Cody Harris
Evan Lane v Jerry Weyman
James McDonald v Dave Marland
Jake Howie v Paul Hill

Board 7
Jess Smiley v Clayton Collins
Craig Prizeman v Mick McCreadie
Dave Platt v Jamie Roger
Chippy Miller v Rhys Mathewson

Board 8
Ash Britt v Daniel Sim
Jack Devries v Andrew Eagers
Steve MacArthur v Bye
Jeremy Fagg v Bye

DAY 2 WORLD SERIES OF DARTS QUALIFIERS

Day 2 of the World Series of Darts continues today at Warilla Bowls and recreation club
Stay tuned to Dartplayers Australia for all the latest news and results

WORLD SERIES OF DARTS BRISBANE QUALIFER

Heta Doubles up his success on Day One of Qualifiers
The first qualifier for the Darts ANZ World Series of Darts event in Brisbane went to Damon Heta as he repeated his success in the first qualifier for Melbourne. This final saw Heta defeat David Platt 6-3.
The earlier board finals were won by Raymond O’Donnell (5-4 over Zinzan Culshaw), Loz Ryder (5-4 over Lucas Cameron), Chippy Miller (5-2 over Ash Britt), James Bailey (5-2 over Rhys Mathewson), Anton Soc (5-4 over fellow West Australian Barry Gardner), John Bunyard (5-3 over Andrew Eagers), David Platt (5-1 over GG Mathers), and Damon Heta (5-3 over Kevin Luland.)
In the quarter finals Platt defeated Bunyard 5-3, with Miller replicating that scoreline over Ryder. O’Donnell defeated Bailey in the last leg of nine. The most comprehensive result was Heta’s 5-1 win over Soc. The semi finals saw Platt win 5-3 over ODonnell and Heta came from 2-3 behind to win the last three legs on the trot and take the match 5-3.
The final saw David Platt open with a maximum against the throw and he consolidated his good stat by hitting double 20 for the first leg. Damon Heta then matched Platt’s early effort by scoring a maximum in his first visit to the oche on his opponents throw. Platt had a chance to win the leg but left 32 and Heta punishe him by securing double 18 for the leg.
Heta then opened with 180 and two visits later Platt matched him. This leg Heta was not going to give Platt a chance as he checked out 128 for a 2-1 leg lead. In the 4th leg Heta hit another 180 to move to 58 and on his next visit he had secured a break against his opponent (3-1.) He then opened with a 134 and 100 before Platt hit another maximum. Platt tried to check out 131 but could only score 119 to leave 12. Heta took full advantage again by securing the required 28 for a 4-1 lead.
Platt then opened with another maximum and high scoring saw the match move quickly through this leg. With a 133 Platt left 58 and watched as a 100 left his opponent on 76. With his next two darts Platt secured his second leg. (4-2)
In leg 7 Heta had another 180 opening and with a 138 later in the leg moved to 128. Platt then secured a 140 to leave 167. Heta chased 128 but only got 41 to leave 87. Platt then moved from 167 to 137 before Heta scored 47 to leave tops. Platt then scored 97 to leave tops himself but Heta got it first with the initial dart of his next visit and moved to within a leg of the match at 5-2.
Platt then opened with a 100 and was the first to get a chance to check the leg out but only scored 60 to leave 100. His opponent then missed two chances for the match as Platt on his next visit missed his chance and left double 20 for the leg. Heta then missed all three at tops as Platt secured a 5-3 scoreline with his first dart of his next visit.
Both players had lower starts in the next leg but a 140 and 180 seemed to put Platt in a better place until 145 left Heta on 36. Platt could not get a 131 check out and left himself on 93 as Heta left 18. Platt missed a double 16 for the leg on his next visit and instead left that 32 as Heta stepped up and took out the double 18 with his next dart to take out the match 6-3.
The final was another classy affair as Platt hit 6 maximums to Heta’s 4, although Heta made an average of 101.09 compared to his opponent’s 98.59 excellent average. The most important statistic was Heta’s 6 legs to Platt’s 3 which secured him another appearance on the PDC stage, this time in Brisbane’s Darts ANZ World Series of Darts debut event.

WORLD SERIES OF DARTS MELB QUALIFER 1

Heta turns up the heat to qualify for the Darts ANZ World Darts Series Melbourne Event.
In the first Darts ANZ World Darts Series Qualifier final for Melbourne it was Western Australia’s Damon Heta who defeated Queensland’s GG Mathers 6-4. There were 67 entries at Warilla Bowls and Recreation Club.
In the board finals Jack Devries defeated Steve Macarthur 5-1, Colin Edwards beat Jeremy Fagg 5-2, Damon Heta outlasted Raymond O’Donnell 5-4, Stephen Schmitt overcame Pat Dargan 5-0, Mal Cuming took out Ash Britt 5-3, GG Mathers secured a comprehensive 5-1 result over Mick Lacey, Lucas Cameron edged out Kalani Hillman 5-4 and Koha Kokiri whitewashed local Brian McCann 5-0.
In the quarter finals there were two white washes as Heta and Kokiri won 5-0 over Schmitt and Cameron respectively. The other two quarters finished 5-3 with wins for Colin Edwards (over Jack Devries) and GG Mathers (over Mal Cuming.) The semis were very different affairs as Heta won 5-0 over Edwards and Mathers overcoming Kokiri in the final leg to win 5-4.
In the final Mathers started with the opening throw and scored 60 whilst Heta opened with 140. With Heta on Shanghai (120) GG checked out 62 to collect the first leg on throw. Heta then opened his throw with a maximum (180) and quickly moved to 64. Mathers was on 170 but failed to collect the big target but Heta could only move from 54 to 10. Mathers then secured the double 18 on his first attempt to take a 2-0 lead with a break. The following leg saw Mathers move to 220 with a maximum of 180. Chasing 81 for the win Heta then hit the bull to get the break back. He then opened with another maximum and a follow up 134 left the West Australian in prime position for the leg. With Mathers sitting on 101 Heta hit the 72 required thanks to a double 12 with his last dart in hand to tie the match up after four legs.
GG started the fifth leg with a 140 to steady the ship and good scoring left him on 72. However Heta piled the pressure on by collecting 131 to move to 36. 32 left GG on tops but a double 18 with his second dart moved Damon ahead on legs for the first time in the match, with the scoreline reading 3-2.
The next leg saw Heta start with 140 and after two visits to the oche both players were equal. 100 from Damon moved him to 161 as GG moved to 138 with a 123. However he was not to revisit the oche that leg as Heta checked out the 161 to move to 4-2. A 140 start on throw saw Mathers quickly move through the next leg and 140 left him on 54. He had to again watch as Heta chased a big check out but he missed the double 12 to give Mathers the chance to win the leg and GG took full advantage by taking out 54 and moving to within one leg of parity.
Throwing his worst start of the match to that point, a 60, Heta gave GG the chance to take an early lead and he did so with a 134 start. With GG sitting on 104 Heta hit a maximum to put pressure on his opponent (moving to 104) but with a bull finish Mathers checked out 127. The match was again equal on legs, this time 4-4. GG then opened with two visits of 60 in the ninth leg on throw but Heta could not take full advantage. A 180 seemed to get Mathers back in the groove as he moved to 201. With Damon on 184 an 89 from Mathers left him on 52. A 144 left the WA player on tops as Mathers missed with his two darts for the leg. With his last dart in hand Heta hit double 10 for the break and a 5-4 lead.
Heta then opened the next leg with 104 but Mathers upped it with a 180 visit. Later in the leg Heta moved to 161 with 100 as 140 from his opponent saw GG move to 85. Chasing 161 Heta missed his first shot at treble 20 but still managed to score 137. He then stood back to watch Mathers miss tops for the leg with his last dart. Heta then scored the required 24 on his next visit to take the leg and the match, 6 legs to 4. Heta averaged 99.69 for the match whilst Mathers averaged 98.11 in a match of the very highest quality.
It had been a match of shifted momentum but it was Heta who held his nerve at the last to make the stage at the Hisense Arena Melbourne.

Heta turns up the heat

DPA ace Damon Heta enjoyed a double success with qualification for the PDC World Series of Darts events in Melbourne and Brisbane next month.

Heta came through the DartPlayers Australia knockouts in Warilla on Sunday to ensure his return to the TV stage, having previously competed in the 2014 Sydney Darts Masters and 2016 Auckland Darts Masters.

A former DPA Australian Singles champion, Perth's Heta denied 2018 World Championship qualifier Gordon Mathers a place in the Melbourne event with a 6-4 victory in their final.

Heta then denied experienced star David Platt in the final of the Brisbane Darts Masters qualifier with a 6-3 win to complete a super Sunday's work.

The remaining three places in each of the Melbourne Darts Masters and Brisbane Darts Masters will be confirmed from Monday to Wednesday with three double-header qualifiers in Warilla.

The Melbourne Darts Masters will be held from August 10-12 at the Hisense Arena. For tickets, visit www.ticketek.com.au.

The Brisbane Darts Masters will be held from August 17-19 at the BCEC. For tickets, visit www.ticketek.com.au.

Melbourne Darts Masters
August 10-12, Hisense Arena, Melbourne, Australia
Competing Players
PDC Representatives: Michael van Gerwen, Peter Wright, Rob Cross, Gary Anderson, Simon Whitlock, Kyle Anderson, Michael Smith, Raymond van Barneveld
Oceanic Representatives: Corey Cadby, Tim Pusey, Raymond Smith, Haupai Puha, Damon Heta (Plus three DPA Qualifiers)

Brisbane Darts Masters
August 17-19, BCEC, Brisbane, Australia
Competing Players
PDC Representatives: Michael van Gerwen, Peter Wright, Rob Cross, Gary Anderson, Simon Whitlock, Kyle Anderson, Michael Smith, Raymond van Barneveld
Oceanic Representatives: Corey Cadby, Tim Pusey, Raymond Smith, Mark Cleaver, Damon Heta (Plus three DPA Qualifiers)

Melbourne Darts Masters DPA Qualifier One
Quarter-Finals
Colin Edwards 5-3 Jack Devries
Damon Heta 5-0 Stephen Schmitt
Gordon Mathers 5-3 Mal Cuming
Koha Kokiri 5-0 Lucas Cameron

Semi-Finals
Damon Heta 5-0 Colin Edwards
Gordon Mathers 5-4 Koha Kokiri

Final
Damon Heta 6-4 Gordon Mathers

Brisbane Darts Masters DPA Qualifier One
Quarter-Finals
Damon Heta 5-1 Anton Soc
Chippy Miller 5-3 Loz Ryder
Raymond O’Donnell 5-4 James Bailey
David Platt 5-3 John Bunyard

Semi-Finals
Damon Heta 5-3 Chippy Miller
David Platt 5-3 Raymond O’Donnell

Final
Damon Heta 6-3 David Platt

WORLD DARTS MASTERS QUALIFIERS AT WARILLA

Qualifiers for the Auckland/Brisbane/Melbourne Darts Masters will commence shortly at the home of DPA Darts Warilla Bowls and recreation club Warilla New South wales,
Stay tune to Dartplayers Australia for all the latest news and results as they happen

MICHAEL SMITH claimed a maiden World Series of Darts title

MICHAEL SMITH claimed a maiden World Series of Darts title with an 8-2 victory over Rob Cross in the final of the 21.co.uk Shanghai Darts Masters at the Pullman Hotel Shanghai South on Saturday.

The 2018 Premier League finalist battled past the field to secure the £20,000 top prize and win a first televised title since winning the World Youth Championship in 2013.

Smith followed up his day one whitewash victory over Xiao Chen Zong with a 8-5 win over Royden Lam, who had become the first Asian qualifier in the history of the Shanghai Darts Masters to register a win after his victory over Gary Anderson the night before.

The Semi-Final stage saw Smith end world number one Michael van Gerwen's run as Shanghai Darts Masters Champion with an impressive 8-4 win.

In truth it was a scrappy game between the pair with both averaging just over 90.

The real moment of quality in the match came from Van Gerwen as he took out a 170 finish in the seventh leg, however that was still not enough to deny Smith a place in his first ever World Series final as he went on to secure the win.

The 27-year-old came out the blocks quickly in the final, racing in to a 4-0 lead over Rob Cross, who was making his second final in a week after losing in the decider in Vegas seven days before.

Cross did manage to recover one of the breaks of throw to close the gap to two but a stunning 130 finish from Smith reopened the four leg lead, before the man from St.Helen's secured the final two of the match to seal the win.

The victory gave Smith his tenth senior PDC title and the Englishman spoke of his delight after the final.

“I have just won on stage and it feels amazing. It's my third title of the year and after the Premier League I was getting doubts in my head whether I would get another chance to win a TV title, but I got it today.

“I didn’t play my best, but I was battling all the way, didn’t let my head drop and kept my spirits high.”

Smith now heads to the World Matchplay filled with confidence as he looks to claim another title for his growing collection.

“Two years ago I made a Semi-Final and that was all that was on my record. I didn’t get lucky in the Premier League – I was showing that I could battle, win matches and I finished second. I have a won a Pro Tour, World Series and the next is a major now. If I can do that in a calendar year then I will be happy.”

Rob Cross began the final day of action in style beating James Wade 8-3 with an average of 106 to progress to the last four.

There, the World Champion met Peter Wright where once again Cross would prove too strong for his opponent, coming out an 8-5 winner but ultimately ran out of steam in the final against Smith.

“In fairness, Michael deserved that – I was useless. At the same time, I can’t be disappointed… I felt knackered when I started and come the final I just didn’t have the energy left, I thought I was lucky to hit the dartboard – but fair play to Michael,” said the 27-year-old.

Cross added: “I'm feeling happy with my game at the moment, but today was just about having no energy – there just wasn’t enough there to carry me through.”

The world's top players now head to Blackpool for the start of the BetVictor World Matchplay taking place between 21-29 July before heading Down Under for the final three World Series events in August.

21.co.uk Shanghai Darts Masters
Saturday July 14 (6.30pm local time)
Quarter-Finals
Royden Lam 5-8 Michael Smith
Michael van Gerwen 8-4 Daryl Gurney
Rob Cross 8-3 James Wade
Peter Wright 8-7 Gerwyn Price

Semi Finals
Michael Smith 8-4 Michael Van Gerwen
Rob Cross 8-5 Peter Wright

Final
Michael Smith 8-2 Rob Cross

All games best of 15 legs

Suljovic Lifts Danish Darts Open Title

MENSUR SULJOVIC secured his first European Tour title of the year as he defeated Simon Whitlock 8-3 in the final of the inaugural Danish Darts Open in Copenhagen.

The reigning Unibet Champions League of Darts champion picked up a second European Tour crown of his career, and a fifth PDC win in total, to cement his place as one of the sport’s elite stars.

The first ever staging of the tournament at the Brondbyhallen saw Whitlock reach his first European Tour final in four years, but Suljovic was the top performer of the weekend, averaging close to 100 in his three Sunday games to pick up the £25,000 prize.

Suljovic eased past Ryan Joyce 6-1 in Saturday evening’s second round, before scraping past Darren Webster 6-5 to reach the final session of the weekend.

There, the Austrian ace fought his way to a 6-4 win over Peter Wright, and then edged a 7-6 thriller against Adrian Lewis to secure his place in his first ranking final of 2018.

“I am so happy to win this title in front of such an amazing crowd,” said Suljovic, whose last European Tour triumph came at the 2016 International Darts Open.
“I am so focussed on my game, I work so hard every day to be at my best and it paid off today.
“It is always difficult to win tournaments because everyone plays so brilliantly but now I want to win more titles.”

Whitlock was in fine form throughout the weekend as he came close to his first European Tour title since 2012.

The former European Championship winner beat in-form Dutchman Jermaine Wattimena 6-3, before edging past Ricky Evans 6-5 to make the final eight.

The Australian number one then defeated Mervyn King 6-4 and Steve West 7-4 to seal his path to a first ranking final of the year.

“It’s a shame I came up just short but I’m over the moon to have made the final,” said Whitlock.
“Congratulations to Mensur, he was the best player of the weekend – I’m proud of him and I’m proud to have played in such a great tournament in Copenhagen.”
The Danish event also proved to be a success for Lewis, who recorded wins over Ted Evetts, Michael Smith, Stephen Bunting and Joe Cullen to back-up his Gibraltar Darts Trophy final berth with a place in the final four.

Brendan Dolan dumped out world number one Michael van Gerwen at the last 16 stage before going out at the hands of Steve West, who made it back-to-back semi-final appearances on the European Tour.

The PDC European Tour continues from June 29 – July 1 with the European Darts Matchplay in Hamburg, Germany with coverage to be broadcast at PDCTV-HD and through a series of bookmakers' websites worldwide.
Friday June 22
First Round
Afternoon Session
Rusty-Jake Rodriguez 6-5 William O’Connor
Ryan Joyce 6-2 Krzysztof Ratajski
Brendan Dolan 6-4 Martin Schindler
Jermaine Wattimena 6-5 Wayne Jones
Darius Labanauskas 6-5 Richard North
Steve Beaton 6-2 Adam Huckvale
Barry Lynn 6-5 Chris Dobey
Madars Razma 6-0 Jeffrey de Zwaan

Evening Session
Jelle Klaasen 6-5 Mickey Mansell
Scott Taylor 6-5 Robert Thornton
Steve West 6-4 Per Laursen
Peter Jacques 6-4 Paul Nicholson
Ricky Evans 6-4 Dennis Nilsson
Adrian Lewis 6-3 Ted Evetts
Cristo Reyes 6-2 Brian Lokken
Max Hopp 6-4 Dragutin Horvat
Saturday June 23
Second Round
Afternoon Session
Brendan Dolan 6-4 John Henderson
Joe Cullen 6-3 Madars Razma
Gerwyn Price 6-3 Jelle Klaasen
Darius Labanauskas 6-5 Jonny Clayton
James Wade 6-4 Rusty-Jake Rodriguez
Darren Webster 6-5 Cristo Reyes
Simon Whitlock 6-3 Jermaine Wattimena
Stephen Bunting 6-3 Peter Jacques
Evening Session
Mervyn King 6-5 Max Hopp
Mensur Suljovic 6-1 Ryan Joyce
Peter Wright 6-1 Barry Lynn
Adrian Lewis 6-5 Michael Smith
Rob Cross 6-5 Steve Beaton
Ricky Evans 6-3 Daryl Gurney
Michael van Gerwen 6-2 Scott Taylor
Steve West 6-4 Ian White
Sunday June 24
Afternoon Session
Peter Wright 6-1 Gerwyn Price
Mensur Suljovic 6-5 Darren Webster
Joe Cullen 6-4 James Wade
Adrian Lewis 6-4 Stephen Bunting
Mervyn King 6-5 Rob Cross
Simon Whitlock 6-5 Ricky Evans
Steve West 6-5 Darius Labanauskas
Brendan Dolan 6-4 Michael van Gerwen

Evening Session
Quarter-Finals
Mensur Suljovic 6-4 Peter Wright
Adrian Lewis 6-2 Joe Cullen
Simon Whitlock 6-4 Mervyn King
Steve West 6-3 Brendan Dolan

Semi-Finals
Mensur Suljovic 7-6 Adrian Lewis
Simon Whitlock 7-4 Steve West

Final
Mensur Suljovic 8-3 Simon Whitlock

Smith Tops DPA Rankings After Double Delight

RAYMOND SMITH fired himself to the top of the DartPlayers Australia ProTour Order of Merit with a double win on the Harrows ProTour, while Gordon Glen Mathers also picked up a title.
A winner of two ProTour events already in 2018, Smith doubles his tally with impressive displays in the opening two days at the Hobart Australian Italian Club.
After overcoming Steve MacArthur to win Friday's final, Smith then defeated Lucas Cameron in the decider on Saturday to make it two out of two for the weekend.
Gordon Glen Mathers claimed his first ProTour title of the year in Sunday's event, seeing off Smith in the semi-finals before beating James Bailey in the final.
The next DPA Pro Tour weekend will be held in Brisbane at the Brook Hotel from September 7-9. For further details, visit www.dartplayersaustralia.com.
DPA Harrows Pro Tour
Event 13 - Friday June 15
Quarter-Finals
Raymond Smith 6-5 Mike Bonser
Chris Vasey 1-6 Tim Pusey
Steve Fitzpatrick 2-6 Ryan Lynch
Steve Powell 2-6 Steve MacArthur
Semi-Finals
Raymond Smith 6-2 Tim Pusey
Ryan Lynch 5-6 Steve MacArthur
Final
Raymond Smith 6-4 Steve MacArthur
Event 14 - Saturday June 16
Quarter-Finals
Raymond Smith 6-3 Tim Pusey
Steve Fitzpatrick 2-6 James Bailey
Raymond O’Donnell 4-6 Chris Vasey
Lucas Cameron 6-2 Loz Ryder
Semi-Finals
Raymond Smith 6-4 James Bailey
Chris Vasey 5-6 Lucas Cameron
Final
Raymond Smith 6-5 Lucas Cameron
Event 15 - Sunday June 17
Quarter-Finals
Gordon Glen Mathers 6-0 Steve Powell
Tim Pusey 3-6 Raymond Smith
Mick Pearce 1-6 Steve Fitzpatrick
James Bailey 6-1 Alex Evans
Semi-Finals
Gordon Glen Mathers def Raymond Smith
Steve Fitzpatrick 2-6 James Bailey
Final
Gordon Glen Mathers 6-4 James Bailey

Cody and Warren in the World Series Auckland

CODY HARRIS and Warren Parry will be joined by World Series of Darts debutants Haupai Puha and Tim Pusey in competing in August's Auckland Darts Masters, presented by TAB & Burger King.

Top New Zealander Harris has made big strides over the past seven months since making his World Championship debut, having based himself in the UK to compete full-time on the PDC circuit.

He won a Challenge Tour event in May and recently represented his country for a third time at the World Cup of Darts, and the 32-year-old has now been invited to compete on home soil in Auckland from August 3-5.

"I'm back home for a while now and I can't wait to play in Auckland again," said Harris, who has played in all three years of the Trusts Arena event.

"Throwing myself into the deep end with the big boys has really helped me out, to play more consistent, and they're pushing me to play really well.

"I've always known that I was good enough, but winning games against the big boys has confirmed that I am good enough to be there and I'm loving every moment of it.

"I had to leave my family behind back home and I've missed them a lot, but if you want to be the best in the sport it's the place to be.

"A lot of people think that their countries are sitting on their shoulders but I picture the people in New Zealand behind me, giving me a shove and pushing me along. Their backing has been fantastic."

Harris' World Cup of Darts team-mate Parry has qualified to compete in the Auckland Darts Masters alongside Puha, who will be appearing on the TV stage for the first time at the Trusts Arena.

That trio will be joined by Australian qualifier Tim Pusey, who has come from the DPA World Series Order of Merit following the completion of their qualifying events.

A further three players will complete the field from the trio of Auckland Darts Masters Qualifiers being held on July 9-10 in Invercargill.

Pusey, who finished in second place on the rankings to the already-invited Corey Cadby, will also play in the Melbourne Darts Masters from August 10-12 and Brisbane Darts Masters from August 17-19.

The Perth-based thrower has never previously competed in a televised event, but has extensive experience on the DPA circuit in recent years.

Raymond Smith, meanwhile, will see his success so far in 2018 rewarded with spots in Melbourne and Brisbane - his home town - in August, as he takes to the big stage in his homeland for the first time.

The Queenslander currently tops the main DPA Order of Merit ahead of Cadby following his double success in Tasmania in June, and is a former qualifier for the Lakeside Championship.

The Auckland Darts Masters will be held from August 3-5 at the Trusts Arena. For tickets, visit www.ticketek.co.nz.

The Melbourne Darts Masters will be held from August 10-12 at the Hisense Arena. For tickets, visit www.ticketek.com.au.

The Brisbane Darts Masters will be held from August 17-19 at the BCEC. For tickets, visit www.ticketek.com.au.

The World Series of Darts Finals will take place from November 2-4 at the Multiversum in Schwechat, Vienna, Austria. For tickets, visit www.pdc-europe.tv.

Auckland Darts Masters
August 3-5, Trusts Arena, Auckland, New Zealand
Competing Players
PDC Representatives: Michael van Gerwen, Peter Wright, Rob Cross, Gary Anderson, Simon Whitlock, Kyle Anderson, Michael Smith, Raymond van Barneveld
Oceanic Representatives: Corey Cadby, Cody Harris, Warren Parry, Haupai Puha, Tim Pusey, three Qualifiers (July 9-10, Invercargill)

Melbourne Darts Masters
August 10-12, Hisense Arena, Melbourne, Australia
Competing Players
PDC Representatives: Michael van Gerwen, Peter Wright, Rob Cross, Gary Anderson, Simon Whitlock, Kyle Anderson, Michael Smith, Raymond van Barneveld
Oceanic Representatives: Corey Cadby, Tim Pusey, Raymond Smith, DPNZ Qualifier (July 15, Invercargill), four Qualifiers (July 22-25, Warilla)

Brisbane Darts Masters
August 17-19, BCEC, Brisbane, Australia
Competing Players
PDC Representatives: Michael van Gerwen, Peter Wright, Rob Cross, Gary Anderson, Simon Whitlock, Kyle Anderson, Michael Smith, Raymond van Barneveld
Oceanic Representatives: Corey Cadby, Tim Pusey, Raymond Smith, DPNZ Qualifier (July 15, Invercargill), four Qualifiers (July 22-25, Warilla)

Smith Tops DPA Rankings After Double Delight

RAYMOND SMITH fired himself to the top of the DartPlayers Australia ProTour Order of Merit with a double win on the Harrows ProTour, while Gordon Glen Mathers also picked up a title.
A winner of two ProTour events already in 2018, Smith doubles his tally with impressive displays in the opening two days at the Hobart Australian Italian Club.
After overcoming Steve MacArthur to win Friday's final, Smith then defeated Lucas Cameron in the decider on Saturday to make it two out of two for the weekend.

Gordon Glen Mathers claimed his first ProTour title of the year in Sunday's event, seeing off Smith in the semi-finals before beating James Bailey in the final.
The next DPA Pro Tour weekend will be held in Brisbane at the Brook Hotel from September 7-9. For further details, visit www.dartplayersaustralia.com.
DPA Harrows Pro Tour
Event 13 - Friday June 15
Quarter-Finals
Raymond Smith 6-5 Mike Bonser
Chris Vasey 1-6 Tim Pusey
Steve Fitzpatrick 2-6 Ryan Lynch
Steve Powell 2-6 Steve MacArthur

Semi-Finals
Raymond Smith 6-2 Tim Pusey
Ryan Lynch 5-6 Steve MacArthur

Final
Raymond Smith 6-4 Steve MacArthur
Event 14 - Saturday June 16
Quarter-Finals
Raymond Smith 6-3 Tim Pusey
Steve Fitzpatrick 2-6 James Bailey
Raymond O’Donnell 4-6 Chris Vasey
Lucas Cameron 6-2 Loz Ryder

Semi-Finals
Raymond Smith 6-4 James Bailey
Chris Vasey 5-6 Lucas Cameron
Final
Raymond Smith 6-5 Lucas Cameron
Event 15 - Sunday June 17
Quarter-Finals
Gordon Glen Mathers 6-0 Steve Powell
Tim Pusey 3-6 Raymond Smith
Mick Pearce 1-6 Steve Fitzpatrick
James Bailey 6-1 Alex Evans
Semi-Finals
Gordon Glen Mathers def Raymond Smith
Steve Fitzpatrick 2-6 James Bailey
Final
Gordon Glen Mathers 6-4 James Bailey

Day 3 HARROWS PRO TOUR HOBART

Day 3 of the Harrows Pro Tour continues in Hobart Tasmania
Stay tuned to Dartplayers Australia for all the latest news and results

HARROWS PRO TOUR DAY 2 HOBART

The Harrows Pro Tour continues Saturday at the Hobart Australian Italian Club, Stay tuned to Dartplayers Australia for all the latest news and results from Hobart

HARROWS PRO TOUR CONTINUES IN TASMANIA

The Harrows Pro Tour continues this Friday and all weekend at the Hobart Australian Italian Club
Stay tuned to Dartplayers Australia for all the latest news and results from Hobart

MICHAEL VAN GERWEN claimed his 25th European Tour title

MICHAEL VAN GERWEN claimed his 25th European Tour title and a fifth of the year as he defeated Adrian Lewis 8-3 in the final of the Gibraltar Darts Trophy.

The world number one backed up his Unibet Premier League and Betway World Cup of Darts titles with another triumph, making it four European Tour crowns in a row to continue his dominance in 2018.

The sixth staging of the tournament at the Victoria Stadium saw runner-up Lewis return to his best, but Van Gerwen was in unstoppable form in the final, averaging 108.13 as he picked up the £25,000 prize.

Van Gerwen hit an incredible tournament average of 104.37 as he saw off close friend Vincent van der Voort in Saturday evening's second round, before breezing past Andy Boulton, Jonny Clayton and Steve West to reach the final.

"For me to win a game like this gives me even more confidence, I'm really happy with my performance," said Van Gerwen, who has lost just one game on the European Tour this year.

"I think I played a phenomenal game in the final and I think I have earned my holiday, I want to relax now and re-charge my batteries for the events coming up.

"The crowd deserved a good performance from me and I am happy that I was able to play well all weekend.

"I had to play well in the final because I know what Adrian is capable of - he is always dangerous and is one of the best players in the world, and it's good to see him doing well again."
Lewis' impressive run to the final confirmed his re-emergence as one of the world's best players and was his best run in a European Tour event since his victory at the 2012 German Darts Masters.

The two-time World Champion whitewashed Gibraltar's Clayton Otton in Friday evening's first round, before seeing off Mensur Suljovic 6-3 to progress to the final day of action.

Lewis then hit an impressive 105.97 average as he edged past James Wade 6-5 into the quarter-finals where he beat Peter Wright 6-3, and then defeated Paul Nicholson in a 7-6 thriller to reach his third ranking final of the year.

"Obviously, I'm disappointed not to win but I think I performed well over the weekend," said Lewis.

"Fair play to Michael he gained confidence from me missing shots and that's why he's the world number one."
The Gibraltar event was also a significant one for Nicholson, who won through to his first PDC ranking semi-final in five years thanks to impressive wins over Antony Lopez, Dave Chisnall, Joe Cullen and Gerwyn Price.

The PDC European Tour continues from June 22-24 with the Danish Darts Open in Copenhagen, Denmark with coverage to be broadcast at PDCTV-HD and through a series of bookmakers' websites worldwide.

2018 Gibraltar Darts Trophy
Friday June 8
First Round
Afternoon Session
Michael Barnard 6-3 Krzysztof Ratajski
Darius Labanauskas 6-4 Jeffrey de Graaf
Brendan Dolan 6-4 James Wilson
Mike De Decker 6-5 Matt Padgett
Andy Boulton 6-5 Ritchie Edhouse
Hannes Schnier 6-2 Roy Asquez
Steve West 6-3 Toni Alcinas
Ross Smith 6-3 Jamie Lewis

Evening Session
Adam Huckvale 6-3 Richie Burnett
Cristo Reyes 6-5 Robert Thornton
Vincent van der Voort 6-3 Barrie Bates
Paul Nicholson 6-0 Antony Lopez
Max Hopp 6-0 Mark Dudbridge
Jermaine Wattimena 6-1 Tony Dawkins
Chris Dobey 6-2 Steve Lennon
Adrian Lewis 6-0 Clayton Otton

Saturday June 9
Second Round
Afternoon Session
Andy Boulton 6-4 Stephen Bunting
Gerwyn Price 6-2 Mike De Decker
Steve West 6-5 Darren Webster
James Wade 6-5 Ross Smith
Simon Whitlock 6-1 Adam Huckvale
Jonny Clayton 6-0 Hannes Schnier
Max Hopp 6-4 Ian White
Daryl Gurney 6-4 Brendan Dolan

Evening Session
Joe Cullen 6-1 Darius Labanauskas
Jermaine Wattimena 6-5 Michael Smith
Rob Cross 6-5 Cristo Reyes
Michael van Gerwen 6-4 Vincent van der Voort
Paul Nicholson 6-4 Dave Chisnall
Adrian Lewis 6-3 Mensur Suljovic
Chris Dobey 6-3 Mervyn King
Peter Wright 6-2 Michael Barnard

Sunday June 10
Afternoon Session
Third Round
Michael van Gerwen 6-2 Andy Boulton
Jonny Clayton 6-2 Max Hopp
Steve West 6-1 Daryl Gurney
Rob Cross 6-2 Simon Whitlock
Gerwyn Price 6-3 Jermaine Wattimena
Paul Nicholson 6-5 Joe Cullen
Adrian Lewis 6-5 James Wade
Peter Wright 6-1 Chris Dobey

Evening Session
Quarter-Finals
Michael van Gerwen 6-2 Jonny Clayton
Steve West 6-5 Rob Cross
Paul Nicholson 6-5 Gerwyn Price
Adrian Lewis 6-3 Peter Wright

Semi-Finals
Michael van Gerwen 7-4 Steve West
Adrian Lewis 7-6 Paul Nicholson

Final
Michael van Gerwen 8-3 Adrian Lewis

Nix in winning form

A rejuvenated Paul Nicholson maintained his solid 2018 form as he battled to a 6-4 win over Dave Chisnall to make the final day of European Tour action for a second successive event where he will face Joe Cullen

ROB CROSS produced a stunning comeback to defeat Cristo Reyes 6-5 in the second round of the Gibraltar Darts Trophy on Saturday.
Spanish star Reyes raced into a 3-0 lead, including an impressive 12-dart leg, before reigning World Champion Cross pulled one back.
Reyes went into a commanding 4-1 lead, only for Cross to respond with a 12-darter of his own to keep himself in the contest.
The Spanish World Cup ace went within a leg of victory at 5-2, and then kicked off the eight leg with a 180, before Cross rallied to rattle off the final four legs and seal his place in the final day of action.
"I made it difficult for myself but I'm just glad to get the win," said Cross.

"I want to win my first European Tour title this weekend and I know I've got the game to do it, I've proved it before and I can do it again."
Cross will meet Simon Whitlock in the last 16 after the Australian recorded a comfortable 6-1 win over Adam Huckvale.

The second day of action at the Victoria Stadium also saw Adrian Lewis continue his up-turn in form with a 6-3 win over sixth seed Mensur Suljovic.
Two-time World Champion Lewis hit four 180s and a 122 checkout en route to a convincing victory to set up a clash with old foe James Wade.
Wade survived a scare earlier in the day as he won the final three legs of his game with Ross Smith to stay in the tournament, despite missing 17 darts at double over the course of the match.

Cullen hit a stunning 107.97 average as he cruised past Darius Labanauskas 6-1 to get the evening session off to a flying start.

Rapid-firing Dutch star Jermaine Wattimena dumped last year's Gibraltar Darts Trophy champion Michael Smith out of the tournament with an impressive 6-5 win, and he will now face Gerwyn Price.
Price wrapped up a 6-2 win over Belgian youngster Mike De Decker, while fellow-Welshman Jonny Clayton breezed through with a 6-0 win over Hannes Schnier and he will now meet German star Max Hopp, who was in fine form in his 6-4 win over Ian White.
World number one Michael van Gerwen hit a 107.86 average against close friend Vincent van der Voort, and he will now play Andy Boulton who saw off Stephen Bunting 6-4.

Daryl Gurney was victorious in the battle of the Northern Ireland World Cup of Darts stars, defeating Brendan Dolan 6-4 and he will face Steve West after he edged past Darren Webster 6-5.
Peter Wright rounded off the day's action with a 6-2 win over Challenge Tour Order of Merit leader Michael Barnard, and the Scot will meet Chris Dobey who posted a 6-3 triumph over Mervyn King.
Sunday will see the conclusion of the tournament, with eight round three games in the afternoon session, followed by the quarter-finals, semi-finals and final in the evening.
The Gibraltar Darts Trophy will be broadcast throughout the weekend for PDCTV-HD Subscribers, and through a series of bookmakers' websites worldwide.
2018 Gibraltar Darts Trophy
Saturday June 9
Second Round
Afternoon Session
Andy Boulton 6-4 Stephen Bunting
Gerwyn Price 6-2 Mike De Decker
Steve West 6-5 Darren Webster
James Wade 6-5 Ross Smith
Simon Whitlock 6-1 Adam Huckvale
Jonny Clayton 6-0 Hannes Schnier
Max Hopp 6-4 Ian White
Daryl Gurney 6-4 Brendan Dolan

Evening Session
Joe Cullen 6-1 Darius Labanauskas
Jermaine Wattimena 6-5 Michael Smith
Rob Cross 6-5 Cristo Reyes
Michael van Gerwen 6-4 Vincent van der Voort
Paul Nicholson 6-4 Dave Chisnall
Adrian Lewis 6-3 Mensur Suljovic
Chris Dobey 6-3 Mervyn King
Peter Wright 6-2 Michael Barnard

Sunday June 10
Afternoon Session (1pm local time, 12pm BST)
Third Round
Michael van Gerwen v Andy Boulton
Jonny Clayton v Max Hopp
Daryl Gurney v Steve West
Rob Cross v Simon Whitlock
Jermaine Wattimena v Gerwyn Price
Joe Cullen v Paul Nicholson
Adrian Lewis v James Wade
Peter Wright v Chris Dobey

Evening Session (7.15pm local time, 6.15pm BST)
Quarter-Finals
Semi-Finals
Final
Sunday’s games played in Draw Bracket order

DPA Releases details for 2019 Pro Tour Expansion

Dartplayers Australia is able to now release early details for the 2019 Harrows Australian Pro Tour expansion in line with the PDCs latest announcement for world championship qualification and prize money
 
24 events will take place across 6 quadruple events at a prize money value of $16000 per weekend or $4000 per event x 4
There will be one event Friday evening , 2 events Saturday and one event Sunday with formats for all 24 events to be announced in due course
Pro Tour Events will be held in the months of : February, March, April, May June and September dates to be announced
Cities and venues will be announced in due course but we can confirm Brisbane / Warilla / Melbourne and Hobart will be 4 definite starting cities
Each venue in 2019 will have a minimum of 16 playing boards for every event
World Series TV Qualifiers will be held in July and each event seeded from the DPA order of merit
Australasian Championships will be held in late October incorporating the Oceanic Masters with a mixture of DPA and DPNZ seeds (formats to be advised)
 
Tour Card reintroduction 2019
Dartplayers Australia will reintroduce its tour card system from 2019 onwards at a cost of $100 AUD per player for 12 months
Event entry fee will remain at $100 per weekend per player for 4 events
Event entry fee by tour card holders will be payable 4 weeks before commencement of every event or spot will be offered to Tour card guest(see below)
The first 96 players ranked in the 2018 pro tour order of merit will be offered a tour card on a first come first serve basis
Tour card acceptance for the first 96 ranked players will open on September 10 2018 and end on September 30 2018 before moving along in the rankings should anyone decline
16 further tour cards will be offered to ladies participating in the 2019 ladies order of merit if all 16 ladies will be playing in all 24 events ..Ladies tour card applications will be assessed individually by the board of Dartplayers Australia
Tour Card payments for 2019 will be in person at the Australasian championships or if not present at Warilla payable by November 10 2018
A further 16 guest spots will be offered to each city above however as non tour card holders entry will be $120 for weekend entry ..this will make up a maximum of 128 players per event..
 
Seeding
For the first time ever in our 17 years 23 events in 2019 will be seeded from the DPA master order of merit which will be updated daily following each event except Saturday double headers where the same seeds will stay in place across both events
The top 16 players will be seeded per board from 2019 onwards in both knockout and round robin events..Friday will remain knockout events with Saturday and Sunday events seeded round robins
The first event of the year will not be seeded with the second event being seeded from day 1 results through to event 24
 
Order of Merits
Dartplayers Australia will run a number of ranking tables for 2019
Main DPA order of merit across all events which will incorporate the Australian Mens Team Selection Including the boys youth side
DPA World series Order of merit Friday Evenings and Sunday events (12 events total) for positions in Live TV PDC Events
World youth championship qualification table across all events
DPA Ladies order of merit across all events which will incorporate the Australian Ladies team selection Including the girls youth side
 
A Full set of Rules and details will be released later in the year including rulings on seedings and tour card participation and absences
 
For those ranked in the top 32 of the main DPA Order of merit as of 6/6/2018 early tour card acceptance will  be available in Hobart
 

BDO takeover would have been a waste of money

PDC Chairman Barry Hearn admits he is “glad” the BDO declined the lucrative takeover offer he submitted almost a decade ago.

Hearn lodged a buyout offer of £1 million plus a further £1 million to be invested into grass roots darts in late 2009, but BDO county delegates instructed their governing body to reject the bid.

At the time, it was believed the BDO made an annual profit of just £16,000, while the PDC made an estimated £1m profit with a turnover of £9m.

Prize money in PDC events rose to a record £11.7m in 2017, almost five times the sum of 2006, while the 2018/19 World Championship will offer a huge £2.5m prize fund, with £500,000 on offer to the winner.

The BDO World Championship, for which a venue and TV deal are still be confirmed for 2019, offers a total prize fund of £339,000 and Hearn believes its 'professional' title should be removed.

"The sadness for me has always been that the Lakeside is being called the World Professional Darts Championship," said Hearn.

"I think that's disrespectful to punters.

"That's the only reason I tried to buy them really, I just wanted to make sure I owned that title!

"I was hearing some bad stories about last week [World Darts Trophy] that there were only 50 people in the crowd.

"I heard it was eight thousand pounds to the winner. I just don't know what you do.

"I'm just so glad I didn't give them two million quid because it would have been a terrible waste of money."

On Monday, it was announced that the PDC World Championship field is to be expanded from 72 to 96 players, including two guaranteed Ladies qualifiers.

The UK and Rest of the World Ladies' qualifying events, to be held later in the year, are open to all female players and Hearn hopes the opportunity will inspire more women to participate in the sport.

He added: "I still can't believe there's a reason why they're not good enough to be up there.

"The only thing I can come back to is, either lack of dedication on their part or lack of opportunity on our part.

"The critics will say it's an opportunity once a year, we've got the amateur circuit but we can't fast track because we have a system in place in the same way respected tours like golf do.

"There's Q School, and as harsh as it may sound, if you're not good enough, you don't deserve to be there."

Gayl King (2001) and Anastasia Dobromyslova (2009) are the only women to have competed in a PDC World Championship to date, while the PDC's inaugural Women's World Championship was won by Stacy Bromberg in 2010.

The two qualifiers are guaranteed at least £7,500 in prize money, rising to £15,000 if they reach the Second Round.

Currently, the BDO Women's World Champion receives £12,000 and the BDO are yet to confirm whether or not the two successful PDC qualifiers will be elible to compete in the BDO World Chmpionship.

Hearn admits that while the lure of a place at Ally Pally remains a one-off opportunity, he must maintain a level playing field and is unwilling to hand out any wildcards to compete on the main PDC tour.

"They've got to do it on a consistent basis and that's where they seem to have let themselves down," he added.

"Also, the truth is, how much do they want it?

"We find ourselves politically saying: "we should be more helpful" but we rely on women being willing to take that opportunity as well.

"You can't just give them a Tour Card because that's disrespectful to the men and kids that struggle.

"There's a lot of 16-22 year-olds on the Development Tour who could probably hold their own on the main tour already, which is fascinating.

"It has to be a level playing field for everybody and if people rise to the challenge and do it then good luck to them wherever they come from and whatever sex they are."

RECORD-BREAKING EXPANSION FOR WILLIAM HILL

THE biggest tournament in darts is to expand further as the William Hill World Championship grows to include 96 competitors and a record £2.5 million prize fund, including a huge £500,000 to the 2018/2019 champion.

In the biggest development for the tournament since its move to London's Alexandra Palace a decade ago, the World Championship will continue its remarkable growth both on and off the oche this year.

The sport's biggest event has seen 72 players in recent years competing in a festival of darts across the Christmas and New Year period, with live coverage on Sky Sports being broadcast worldwide.

The introduction of 24 further qualifiers will see the field increase to 96 competitors, with additional professionals joining an expanded group of international qualifiers which will include two female contenders.

Six additional sessions will be added to this year's schedule to accommodate the extra matches, providing greater opportunities for fans to see the World Championship live following the sell-out interest at Alexandra Palace in recent years and a 30 percent increase in Sky Sports’ live coverage to over 110 hours.

Title sponsors William Hill have also extended their commitment to darts' flagship tournament with a contract to further their support of the World Championship until 2022.

Tickets for the 2018/2019 World Championship will take place from December 13-January 1, will go on sale at the end of July, with 90,000 tickets to be available for fans.

"The William Hill World Darts Championship has become a phenomenon in worldwide sport given its incredible growth in recent years, but this announcement takes the tournament to a whole new level," said PDC Chairman Barry Hearn.

"The backing of our sponsors William Hill and worldwide broadcasters led by Sky Sports has been matched by the incredible interest from fans who flock to Alexandra Palace every Christmas and watch around the globe.

"The World Championship has grown year-on-year in the decade since our move from the Circus Tavern to Alexandra Palace, which is the perfect home for such a prestigious event.

"Moving to 96 players will not only reward more players from our ProTour, with 32 qualifiers joining the world's top 32 players in securing places in the World Championship, but also gives us the opportunity to expand the international qualifiers.

"Our worldwide growth, in particular through our affiliated tours, has seen greater interest than ever for spots from around the globe as emerging players battle to compete on the biggest stage in darts.

"We also felt that it was important to guarantee two places for female players, which will go to qualifiers from the UK and Rest of the World.

“Combined with the leading professional talents in darts, rising stars from around the world and new faces who win through the qualifiers, this promises to be an incredible tournament and a feast of festive darts for fans either at Ally Pally or watching the tournament later this year.”

Grant Williams, Managing Director of William Hill Online, said: "We're delighted to extend our sponsorship of the World Darts Championship.

"We have a great relationship with Barry Hearn and his team at the PDC and we're thrilled to continue this partnership until at least 2022."

Female players will have the opportunity to compete later this year in a UK Qualifier or a Rest of the World Qualifier to claim their spot in the World Championship, where they could emulate previous competitors Gayl King and Anastasia Dobromyslova, with the news following on from Chinese qualifier Momo Zhou’s participation in last weekend’s World Cup of Darts.

The top four players from the 2018 PDC Asian Tour Order of Merit will also compete at Alexandra Palace, along with the leading two players from the PDC Unicorn Development Tour, PDC Nordic & Baltic rankings and the Order of Merit winners from the PDC Unicorn Challenge Tour and DartPlayers Australia and EuroAsian Darts Corporation circuits.

In addition, the top ranked American player and top-ranked Canadian player from the Championship Darts Corporation will join the 2018 North American Championship winner in earning a spot at Alexandra Palace.

The World Youth Championship and DPA Oceanic Masters will join knockout events to be held in China, Japan, India, Africa, New Zealand, South America, Germany, Ireland and four qualifiers across Europe ahead of November’s PDPA Qualifier, which is the last chance for professionals to secure one of two places in the World Championship.

Those 32 international qualifiers will join the 32 ProTour Order of Merit qualifiers in the first round, with the 32 seeded players from the PDC Order of Merit joining the event in round two.

Tickets for the 2018/2019 William Hill World Darts Championship will go on Priority Sale to PDCTV-HD Annual Subscribers on Monday July 23 and on General Sale from Monday July 30. Hospitality Packages will go on sale from Tuesday July 31. Ticket information will be available at www.pdc.tv/tickets.

The PDC have also worked with official ticketing partners SeeTickets to ensure an ethical resale website will be available for fans who have tickets which genuinely cannot be used, with further details to be confirmed in due course.

2018/2019 William Hill World Darts Championship

Schedule of Play

Thursday December 13

Evening Session

3x First Round matches

1x Second Round match

Friday December 14

Afternoon Session

3x First Round matches

1x Second Round match

Evening Session

3x First Round matches

1x Second Round match

Saturday December 15

Afternoon Session

3x First Round matches

1x Second Round match

Evening Session

3x First Round matches

1x Second Round match

Sunday December 16

Afternoon Session

3x First Round matches

1x Second Round match

Evening Session

3x First Round matches

1x Second Round match

Monday December 17

Evening Session

3x First Round matches

1x Second Round match

Tuesday December 18

Afternoon Session

3x First Round matches

1x Second Round match

Evening Session

2x First Round matches

2x Second Round matches

Wednesday December 19

Afternoon Session

3x First Round matches

1x Second Round match

Evening Session

4x Second Round matches

Thursday December 20

Afternoon Session

4x Second Round matches

Evening Session

4x Second Round matches

Friday December 21

Afternoon Session

4x Second Round matches

Evening Session

4x Second Round matches

Saturday December 22

Afternoon Session

3x Third Round matches

Evening Session

3x Third Round matches

Sunday December 23

Afternoon Session

3x Third Round matches

Evening Session

3x Third Round matches

Thursday December 27

Afternoon Session

3x Third Round matches

Evening Session

1x Third Round match

2x Fourth Round matches

Friday December 28

Afternoon Session

3x Fourth Round matches

Evening Session

3x Fourth Round Matches

Saturday December 29

Afternoon Session

2x Quarter-Finals

Evening Session

2x Quarter-Finals

Sunday December 30

Evening Session

Semi-Finals

Tuesday January 1

Evening Session

Final

Qualifiers

Top 32 from PDC Order of Merit

Top 32 from ProTour Order of Merit

Plus 32 International Qualifiers:

Two PDPA Qualifiers

2018 PDC Asian Tour Top Four

2018 PDC Unicorn World Youth Champion

2018 PDC Unicorn Development Tour Order of Merit top two

2018 PDC Unicorn Challenge Tour Order of Merit winner

PDC Nordic & Baltic Top Two

EADC Champion

Oceanic Masters Champion

DPA Order of Merit Winner

DPNZ Qualifier

German Superleague Champion

Central Europe Qualifier

South Europe Qualifier

West Europe Qualifier

East Europe Qualifier

PDC China Qualifier

Tom Kirby Memorial Irish Matchplay Champion

North American Championship Winner

CDC Top Ranked American Player

CDC Top Ranked Canadian Player

PDJ Japanese Qualifier

African Qualifier

South American Qualifier

UK Ladies Qualifier

Rest of the World Ladies Qualifier

Indian Qualifier

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