Comment & Analysis @paulprenders
Event originally scheduled for Hamburg in June; competition to take place over three days
Last Updated: 29/05/20 11:12am
The World Cup of Darts has a new date and a new venue after the PDC confirmed the tournament will now take place in November in Graz, Austria.
As governments began to relax some aspects of lockdown, hope continues to grow about the return of live sport and the World Cup will move to the Premstättner Halle in Graz on November 6, taking place over three days that will include two sessions per day.
The PDC’s latest announcement also includes an expected rejig to the European Tour, with Budapest, Jena, Gibraltar and Prague preparing to host tournaments in September and October as restrictions in place in Germany and the Netherlands mean seven events on the European Tour will now not take place.
Originally scheduled for Hamburg in June, the World Cup was one of several events postponed as the PDC effectively cancelled darts in line with social distancing guidelines around the world.
World Cup of Darts, Revised schedule (November 6-8)
|Friday November 6||8 x First-Round matches||Afternoon|
|8 x First-Round matches||Evening|
|Saturday November 7||4 x Second-Round matches||Afternoon|
|4 x Second-Round matches||Evening|
|Sunday November 8||4 x Quarter-Finals||Afternoon|
|Semi-Finals & Final||Evening|
Featuring 32 nations from around the world, the World Cup has become one of the most important tournaments in the game, underlining the growth of the sport. Last year, Scotland’s superstar pairing of Peter Wright and Gary Anderson beat surprise finalists Republic of Ireland to claim their first World crown.
The event has been held in Germany since 2012 after its debut in England in 2010 and it will replace the planned new dates for the 2020 Austrian Darts Open European Tour event. Tickets purchased for the original dates of the Austrian Darts Open will remain valid for the equivalent session of the new dates.
Despite darts being on hold since mid-March, plans are continually moving towards a loaded second half of the season with the hope of getting as close to a darts ‘season’ as possible.
Friday’s announcement comes ahead of a decision on the World Matchplay which is likely to be made next week. As it stands, the Blackpool showpiece is the first event back on the schedule, due to get underway on July 18.
Proposed European PDC calendar
|Hungarian Darts Trophy (Budapest) – September 4-6|
|German Darts Open (Jena) – September 11-13|
|World Series of Darts Finals (Salzburg) – Sept 18-20|
|Gibraltar Darts Trophy (Gibraltar) – September 25-27|
|Czech Darts Open (Prague) – October 16-18.|
|European Championship (Dortmund) – Oct 29-Nov 1|
Several options are being considered for how and where the tournament will take place in line with the latest government advice, with a secure ‘biosphere’ environment at a different venue thought to be the fall back if guidance dictates a move away from the Winter Gardens.
The Premier League remains in the calendar, resuming on July 30 in Birmingham, but with dates in Berlin (September 3) and Rotterdam (September 9 and 10) on the schedule, the World Cup announcement and the UK’s own rules dependant on standards being met
As it stands, the Pro, Challenge and Development Tours have all been suspended until the end of June, with the PDC’s hoping that a loosening of the guidelines may allow a return to competitive action.
Darting from home has kept the PDC’s Tour Card holders active and the hope is with dates being added to the latter part of the year and a decision on the Matchplay imminent, darts may return in the next couple of months.
The PDC Home Tour continues and is through to the Play-Offs stage, with Gary Anderson the latest player to book his place in the semi-finals with a dominant display on Thursday night.
Coverage of the PDC’s Home Tour continue on the Sky Sports app throughout the week, for the last week of the first round. Sky Sports – on the go! Available to download now on – iPhone & iPad and Android.