Many people thought that the popularity of Darts would decline after the retirement of Phil ‘The Power’ Taylor. Taylor was the driving force in the popularity of the sport for more than a decade and left a massive void behind after retiring in January 2018. That has not been the case, and the next generation is taking darts to the next level. Young players such as Nathan Aspinall and Demitri van den Bergh are now challenging for the top-ranked tournaments, it looks like the old guard's reign is coming to an end and a new breed of talented young players are ready to take over.
Darts has completely transformed over the last decade, and it is now a professional sport rather than just a pub game. The young players coming through take the competition more seriously than previous generations. This is mainly due to the vast sums of money in prizes available. Instead of drinking and smoking while playing darts in the pub to practice, the young have taken the professional approach. The pints of lager has been replaced by water, and they are willing to dedicate themselves to the sport.
One of the main reasons for Darts increased popularity over the last decade has been down to Barry Hearn. The promoter is now in his 70s says he has never seen such interest in the sport before.Bookmakers are behind the sport pouring money into the game due to the increase in demand for darts, and great offers such as the ones from bet-ri.com and its partners, darts and other sports are in good hands.
Placing wagers on the outcome of matches has become a popular pastime for many fans and within app betting darts seems to be made for the new style of betting offers. TV companies are entirely on board; this appears to be due to the record numbers that are tuning in to watch the World Darts Championships and Premier League.
Phil Taylor, however, has recently hinted that he would love to play against Michael van Gerwen and Gary Anderson again. He has said he is playing well with his new darts and may come out of retirement to play again. However, the ‘Power’ no longer holds a PDC tour card, but speculation has hinted Taylor may return in some none ranking PDC events such as the World Series of Darts or Premier League next year.
Premier League Darts is now big business and tickets to attend the event tend to sell out in record time. With more than 100,000 tickets available all paying at least 40 pounds per ticket which goes to show the staggering amounts a tournament can now generate. Add on top of that sponsorship and TV rights deals, and darts is one of the sports that it is now possible to get rich on beyond most people’s imagination.
It is not just in the UK where the popularity is on the increase as all across Europe along with China are seeing a massive increase in demand. It means that the sport is the strongest it has ever been not only in terms of revenue along with popularity but also the talent that is coming through the ranking process. Players like Nathan Aspinall and Van Den Bergh are wholly focused on improving their game and cut out things such as exhibitions in the pursuit of perfecting their play. The Power showed what dedication and practice regularly could do, and many young players are now using the ‘Power’s’ ethos to make it to the top of the sport.
World Darts has never been in such a strong position before and with the increase in competition means that anyone can beat anyone ranking in the top 20. Because of this, it has led to exciting matches and last leg deciders. In 2019 the chairman of the PDC said there would be £14M in competition prize money and with more TV coverage, darts has become one of the biggest sports to watch.
The PDC World Series of Darts is trotting across the globe to promote the sport. More players from Germany, China and the rest of Asia becoming involved in the game, things have never looked so brighter. The 2020 World Championships is likely to be the biggest ever as more countries than ever before taking part.
If you want to find out more about the PDC tournaments during 2019/2020, see the PDC event calendar.