The PDC World Darts Championship: What You Need To Know
The 25th PDC World Darts Championship will commence this month on the 14th and run through to New Year's Day. The event will take place at the historic Alexandra Palace in London, featuring 72 players of both UK and international origin. The winner will take home £400,000 of the record £1,800,000 prize pool.
History of the Championship
The competition originally splintered off from the BDO (British Darts Organisation) World Darts Championship in 1994, due to conflict over the sudden drop in television coverage of the sport. Players in the BDO Championship (and many other darts competitions at the time) were originally allowed to smoke and drink during play, but during the 1980s sponsors became increasingly wary of this negative image and began to pull advertising.
As a result, a large number of professional players left to form the WDC (World Darts Council), with the aim of restoring public image of the game. Throughout the 1990s the professional darts community remained largely fractured, and the WDC eventually morphed into the PDC (Professional Darts Corporation), hosting its own championship yearly.
Many of the greatest darts players of the time followed the shift to the PDC. The first PDC World Darts Championship in 1994 was won by Dennis Priestly, followed immediately by a streak of domination from Phil Taylor. Taylor won 14 of the 19 championships from 1995 to 2013 and was runner-up three times in the same period. Four players currently tie behind him in number of tournament wins, at two each.
Taylor's streak was broken in 2003 by Canadian John Part but then continued until 2007 when Dutchman Raymond van Barneveld won. John Part won the championship a second time in 2008, and Taylor's grip on first place was loosened as Adrian Lewis, Michael van Gerwen and Gary Anderson each took home the title multiple times in recent years.
The Favourites For This Years Crown
Dutchman Michael van Gerwen will return to defend the title of champion after his win in 2017. Van Gerwen is currently first in the PDC World Rankings, breaking through in 2012 and eventually taking first place at the tournament in 2014. Scottish player Peter Wright follows Van Gerwen on the leaderboard and placed second in the championship in 2014, however, his appearance at this year's event is uncertain due to his recent hospitalization for possible gallstones.
Gary Anderson, also from Scotland, will return to attempt to wrestle back the title of champion after losing it to Van Gerwen in 2017 following Anderson's two-year win streak. Austrian Mensur Suljović is also in a strong position for the tournament after winning his first major title in September at the 2017 Champions League of Darts against Anderson. North Irish player Daryl Gurney is also poised to grab the title after a successful year during which he won his first PDC event, and was runner-up in another, behind Van Gerwen.
Phil Taylor Announces Retirement - Will This be his Swan Song?
After looming over professional darts for decades, this year's PDC World Darts Championship will be Englishman Phil Taylor's final tournament. Taylor announced in January that he intends to retire from the professional scene after the event. He took home the title of champion in 2013 but has since struggled against competition from Van Gerwen and Anderson. After placing second in 2015, he was knocked out before the semi-finals in the 2016 and 2017 events — however, after a long history of dominance in the sport, Taylor's chances in what will be his final major event remain to be seen.
With the event being sponsored by William Hill you can expect some specials from them, but what markets will the other online bookmakers be offering?
Coral will cover the PDC World Championships on their dedicated darts section. On top of outright and match winners, they have a great selection of in-play markets to make your darts experience that bit more enjoyable. Whether you are looking for the scorer of the most 180s, highest checkout hitter or if a nine-darter will be thrown, they will have a market open for it at odds that are just too good to miss!
Handicap Betting. Correct Score. Total Sets. Total 180s. Most 180s in Match. Most 180s Handicap. More Bets. . Total Player A 180s in Match. Total Player B 180s in Match.
Paddy Power price up their World Championship odds well in advance giving you the earliest chance to place your darts bet on the sport’s biggest competition. Not only do Paddy Power bring you outright darts betting they also offer match betting. So, for every major match punters can get win odds, correct score odds, highest checkout betting and leg betting. You can also bet on a 170 checkout or a nine-dart finish. Paddy Power’s darts betting pages carry all the darts odds you will ever need.
51 Markets available including: