Wednesday, 23 October 2013

BDO LakeSide World Darts Championship

The format for the 2014 Lakeside World Professional Darts Championships has been extended for both the Men’s and the Women’s events. 40 male players (featuring 8 new qualifiers from the world regions) and a field of 16 ladies are heading to Lakeside, the world’s most famous darts stage, for the BDO’s biggest ever Lakeside World Championship with an extra £52,000 in prize money up for grabs.

The epic Lakeside venue just South of London will be home to 9 days of sheer darts drama, as the compelling championship story unfolds watched by millions of the most passionate and knowledgeable darts fans from around the world.

With every dart thrown broadcast live on BBC TV, and tickets selling out in record time months in advance, darts fans across the planet are looking forward to the crowning of new BDO World Champions, and the titles have never looked more open than in any other year.

Stephen Bunting, the number 1 ranked BDO player and winner of the 2013 Winmau World Masters, will go in as strong favourite, but he has yet to claim the title and faces stiff competition for the crown from defending World Champion Scott Waites and previous champions Christian Kist and Martin Adams.

The Women’s field sees 16 of the top players competing, and reigning champion Anastasia Dobromyslova bids to retain her title for the third year in a row. World number 1 and current Winmau World Master Deta Hedman along with 9 times Women’s World Champion Trina Gulliver MBE will be doing their best to stop Anastasia’s challenge.

BDO Chairperson Sue Williams said “Players try for years to qualify for Lakeside, as it represents the pinnacle of their career. No matter how experienced a player may be, the stage, the tournament, the venue and the history make it one of the hardest events in world darts to win."

Sue remembers watching many household names playing some of the most memorable and life changing matches, and she mused "Can you imagine what it’s like to get up there on that stage, so close to the fans and how intimidating it must be every time you go out to try and win this amazing Championship, and then finally the elation and joy at winning?" Williams continued “The players, fans, Bob Potter and all at Lakeside, BBC, Winmau and the various sponsors (such as, Holsten and Jackpotjoy) that have supported the tournament over the years have done so much in making darts the global sport that it is today and we’re so happy that these valued partners have enabled the staging of the biggest Lakeside World Professional that the BDO has ever hosted".

Introducing 8 qualifiers from overseas (which includes the USA’s Jim Widmayer and Japan’s Shimizu Hiroaki) is an important development and highlights the BDO’s relentless passion for growing the world-wide sport of darts at every level.

The BDO’s decision to take its biggest major championship and open it up to new corners of the world couldn’t make a more spectacular splash, as the darting public get to see the hottest global talent vying to win the prestigious Lakeside title.

The BDO Board of Directors look forward to welcoming all players, viewers and fans to the 2014 Lakeside World Professionals and wish all the players taking part the very best of luck.