|PDC World Darts Championship|
|Venue|| Circus Tavern (1994–2007)|
Alexandra Palace (since 2008)
|Location|| Purfleet (1994–2007)|
London (since 2008)
|Prize fund||£2,500,000 (2020)|
The PDC World Darts Championship, known for sponsorship purposes as the William Hill World Darts Championship, organised by the Professional Darts Corporation (PDC), is one of the two separate World Professional Darts Championships held annually in the sport of darts. The other is the BDO World Darts Championship organised by the British Darts Organisation (BDO). The PDC championship begins in December and ends in January and is held at Alexandra Palace in London. It is the highest profile of the PDC's tournaments, with the winner receiving the Sid Waddell Trophy, named in honour of the darts commentator Sid Waddell, who died in 2012.
The PDC championship began in 1994 as the WDC World Darts Championship as one of the consequences of the split in darts, which saw the World Darts Council break away from the BDO. As a result of the settlement between the BDO and the WDC in 1997, the WDC became the PDC, and players are now free to choose which world championship to enter (but not both in the same year), as long as they meet certain eligibility criteria.
The current PDC champion is Peter Wright. With 14 wins from 25 appearances, Phil Taylor has dominated the competition, last winning it in 2013. Other than Taylor, there have been eight other champions. The other players to win it more than once are Michael van Gerwen (2014, 2017 & 2019), John Part (2003 & 2008), Adrian Lewis (2011 & 2012) and Gary Anderson (2015 & 2016) . The one-time winners are the inaugural champion Dennis Priestley, the Dutchman Raymond van Barneveld (2007), Rob Cross (2018) and Peter Wright (2020).
In 1992, some high-profile players, including all previous winners of the BDO World Darts Championship still active in the game, formed the WDC (now PDC), and in 1994, held their first World Championship. Dennis Priestley won the inaugural competition.
The players who broke away were taking a significant gamble – the tournament was broadcast on satellite television rather than terrestrial, and from 1994 to 2001, the prize fund for the players in the WDC/PDC World Championship was lower than the prize fund in the BDO version, although the 1997 PDC World Champion received £45,000 compared to that year's BDO World Champion receiving £38,000. In 2002, the PDC prize fund overtook that of the BDO for the first time, and the PDC event now boasts the largest prize fund of any darts competition. In 2010, the prize fund reached £1 million for the first time, with the World Champion collecting £200,000.
The 2014 and 2015 PDC World Champions collected £250,000 for their respective wins. In 2018, the prize fund will be increased to £1.8 million, with the World Champion receiving £400,000.
The PDC World Darts Championship has been held at Alexandra Palace in London since 2008, having previously been held at the Circus Tavern in Purfleet, Essex, from 1994 to 2007.
|Year||Champion (average in final)||T.||Score||Runner-up (average in final)||Prize money||Sponsor||Venue|
|1994||1st||6–1||£64,000||£16,000||£8,000||Skol|| Circus Tavern,|
|2008||2nd||7–2||£589,000|| Alexandra Palace,|
|Country||Players||Total||First title||Last title|
Nine nine-darters have been thrown at the World Championship. The first one was in 2009.
|Player||Year (+ Round)||Method||Opponent||Result|
|2009, Quarter-Final||3 x T20; 3 x T20; T20, T19, D12||Won|
|2010, 2nd Round||3 x T20; 3 x T20; T20, T19, D12||Won|
|2011, Final||3 x T20; 3 x T20; T20, T19, D12||Won|
|2013, 2nd Round||3 x T20; 3 x T20; T20, T19, D12||Lost|
|2013, Semi-Final||3 x T20; 2 x T20, T19; 2 x T20, D12||Won|
|2014, 1st Round||3 x T20; 3 x T20; T20, T19, D12||Lost|
|2014, 1st Round||3 x T20; 3 x T20; T20, T19, D12||Lost|
|2015, 3rd Round||3 x T20; 3 x T20; T20, T19, D12||Lost|
|2016, Semi-Final||3 x T20; 3 x T20; T20, T19, D12||Won|
Since the breakaway of the PDC players, there has been much debate about the relative merits of the players within each organisation. The debate often focuses on the three-dart averages of players in matches.
An average over 100 in a match in the PDC World Championship has since been achieved 195 times.This is compared to 21 times in the BDO World Championship, following the 2019 event. In 2010 Phil Taylor became the first player to average over 100 in all six rounds of the tournament. He repeated this feat (though lost the final) in 2015 and Michael van Gerwen achieved it in 2017 and 2019.
An average of over 105 in a match in the PDC World Championship has been achieved 40 times. The highest match average ever in the BDO World Championship is 103.83 by Raymond van Barneveld in his quarter-final victory over John Walton in 2004.
|Ten highest PDC World Championship one-match averages|
|111.21||2002, 2nd Round||6–1|
|109.23||2016, 2nd Round||4–0|
|109.00||2007, 2nd Round||4–1|
|108.65||2018, 2nd Round||4–0|
|108.39||2011, 3rd Round||4–0|
|108.31||2013, 1st Round||3–0|
|Five highest losing averages|
|106.09||2019, 2nd Round||1–3|
|106.07||2017, 2nd Round||2–4|
|105.78||2016, 3rd Round||3–4|
|Five highest combined match averages|
|2017, 2nd Round|
|2007, 2nd Round|
|Different players with a 100+ match average|
|Player||Total||Highest Av.||Year (+Round)|
|56||111.21||2002, 2nd Round|
|20||108.39||2011, 3rd Round|
|15||106.51||2010, 1st Round|
|3||104.45||2019, 2nd Round|
|3||102.54||2016, 1st Round|
|2||107.27||2018, 2nd Round|
|2||106.09||2019, 2nd Round|
|2||104.20||2020, 3rd Round|
|2||102.64||2012, 3rd Round|
|2||101.09||2020, 3rd Round|
|2||100.51||2018, 1st Round|
|1||106.07||2017, 2nd Round|
|1||104.64||2017, 2nd Round|
|1||103.38||2001, 1st Round|
|1||103.26||2019, 2nd Round|
|1||102.42||2010, 3rd Round|
|1||102.34||2015, 3rd Round|
|1||102.30||2017, 3rd Round|
|1||101.82||2007, 2nd Round|
|1||101.54||2020, 2nd Round|
|1||101.17||2018, 2nd Round|
|1||100.88||2017, 1st Round|
|1||100.33||2020, 2nd Round|
|1||100.23||2018, 1st Round|
|Ten highest tournament averages (min 3 matches)|
The PDC World Championship has been broadcast live and in its entirety by Sky Sports in the UK since its inception. Since 2009 the tournament has been shot in High Definition (HD). Their coverage is currently presented from a studio overlooking the interior of the Alexandra Palace venue.
The current presenting team is as follows:
Former presenters and commentators have been:
Dutch broadcaster SBS6, having covered the BDO World Darts Championship for many years, also covered the event until RTL7 took over broadcasting. Fox Sports (Australia), TSN (Canada), SuperSport (South Africa), Sky Sport (New Zealand), StarHub (Singapore), Ten Sports (India), CCTV (China), Showtime (Middle East), Ukraine TV, IKO (Poland), NOVA Sport (Czech Republic and Slovakia), Sport1 (Hungary), Meersat (Malaysia), 7TV (Russia), Measat (Indonesia), J Sports (Japan), DAZN (USA, Italy), GOL TV (Spain) Eurosport (Romania) now also broadcast the event.
Television viewing figures for the final are as follows:
|Sky UK||Netherlands||Germany SPORT1|
|2020||1,006,553||1,200,000 (RTL 7)||1,590,000|
|2019||658,300||1,540,000 (RTL 7)||1,490,000|
|2018||1,400,000||864,000 (RTL 7)||2,150,000|
|2017||607,000||2,170,000 (RTL 7)||1,480,000|
|2016||908,000||869,000 (RTL 7)||950,000|
|2015||1.5 million peak||908,000 (RTL 7)||1,360,000|
|2014||668,000||2,054,000 (RTL 7)||560,000|
|2013||1,270,000||1,748,000 (RTL 7)||810,000|
|2012||728,000||762,000 (RTL 7)|
|2008||731,000||211,000 (compilation SBS6)||340,000|
The PDC world championship events are now broadcast on www.livepdc.tv which shows the events live, highlights and also classic matches. This website is a subscription only viewing and is limited to certain territorial restrictions.
The tournament has been sponsored by bookmaker William Hill since 2015. Previous sponsors have been:
Following popular darts commentator Sid Waddell's death on 11 August 2012, the decision was made to rename the champion's trophy to the Sid Waddell trophy from the 2013 tournament onwards.
Philip Douglas Taylor is a retired English professional darts player, nicknamed The Power. Taylor dominated darts for over two decades and won 214 professional tournaments, including a record 85 major titles and a record 16 World Championships. In 2015, the BBC rated him among the ten greatest British sportsmen of the last 35 years. He is the richest and most successful darts player in history.
Raymond van Barneveld is a retired Dutch professional darts player. Nicknamed Barney, although originally known as The Man, he is one of the most successful darts players in history. Van Barneveld is a five-time World Darts Champion, a two-time UK Open Champion and a former winner of the Las Vegas Desert Classic, the Grand Slam of Darts and the Premier League. He is also a twice-winner of the World Masters and the World Darts Trophy, and a three-time winner of the International Darts League and the WDF World Cup Singles event.
The Professional Darts Corporation (PDC) is a professional darts organisation in the United Kingdom, established in 1992 when a group of leading players split from the British Darts Organisation to form what was initially called the World Darts Council (WDC). Sports promoter Barry Hearn is the PDC chairman.
John Part is a Canadian professional darts player and commentator, nicknamed Darth Maple. Part is a three-times World Champion, having won the 1994 BDO World Darts Championship, and the PDC World Championship in 2003 and 2008. He is statistically North America's greatest darts player to date. He has the distinction of being the first non-UK player to win the World Championship, and the only non-European to date to win the PDC World Darts Championship. His first Championship was the second time a non-seeded player won the BDO World Darts Championship, and one of the few times where a player only lost one set in the entire tournament. His nine year gap between his first and second World Championships is tied with Ted Hankey for the longest gap between World Championships, and his third triumph in 2008 saw him become the first player in history to win a world title in three different venues, and the first to win at the Alexandra Palace. His 2008 win saw him join Phil Taylor, Eric Bristow, Raymond van Barneveld and John Lowe as the only players with three or more World Championships, and become only the second player to win multiple PDC titles. His eleven televised PDC finals is tied with Dennis Priestley for the eighth most all time, and his £874,151 in prize money to date is the sixteenth highest amount in PDC history. Similar with Cliff Thorburn in snooker, Part remains the only darts champion from the Americas.
The British Darts Organisation (BDO) is a darts organisation founded on 7 January 1973 by Olly Croft. The BDO was a founder member of the World Darts Federation which was formed in 1976 but due to a recent WDF ruling they are now considered an associate member. The BDO is made up of 66 member counties in Britain and organises tournaments for semi-professionals and amateurs.
Steve Beaton is an English professional darts player for the Professional Darts Corporation (PDC). He won the BDO World Darts Championship in 1996 and is a former World No. 1.
Mervyn King is an English professional darts player, who plays in Professional Darts Corporation tournaments. His nickname is The King. He has reached 5 PDC major TV finals, and has reached no.4 in the world rankings.
Dennis Priestley is a retired English professional darts player. He has won two world championships, and was the first player to win both the BDO and WDC world championships, in 1991 and 1994 respectively. He is nicknamed "The Menace", after the cartoon character Dennis the Menace, and reflects this by wearing red and black, and using red and black flights.
The BDO World Darts Championship is a world championship competition in darts, organised by the British Darts Organisation (BDO). It began in 1978, and was, alongside the World Darts Federation's World Cup of Darts, one of two world championship tournaments until 1993. Since 1994, following a dispute with the BDO and the subsequent fallout, a breakaway group stages its own annual PDC World Championship, generally before the BDO version in late December and early January of each year.
Michael van Gerwen is a Dutch professional darts player. He is currently ranked number one in the world, having won the PDC World Darts Championship in 2014, 2017, and 2019. He began playing darts at the age of 13. He won the 2006 World Masters and threw a televised nine-dart finish at the 2007 Masters of Darts, becoming the youngest player to do either at age 17. However, after this initial burst onto the darting scene, Van Gerwen struggled for consistent form until his breakthrough year in 2012. Improving from world number 38 at the start of 2012 to number four at the beginning of 2013, he won his first major PDC title at the World Grand Prix and reached the final at the 2013 World Championship. In 2014, at the age of 24, Van Gerwen became the youngest winner of the PDC World Championship, a record he still holds today. He also holds the record for the highest three-dart average in a televised darts match, with 123.40.
Paul Lim Leong Hwa known simply as Paul Lim is a Singaporean professional darts player. He was the first player to hit a perfect 9-dart finish during the Embassy World Darts Championship, which he achieved in 1990 during his second round match against Jack McKenna. Lim won £52,000 for his 9-darter, which was £28,000 more than Phil Taylor won for winning the tournament. John Lowe achieved the first 9-dart finish on television in a match against Keith Deller at the 1984 World Matchplay, for which Lowe won £102,000. Lim's 9-darter remained the only 9-dart game to have been achieved in either version of the world championships, until Raymond van Barneveld hit one against Jelle Klaasen in the quarter-final of the 2009 PDC World Darts Championship. To date, it remains the only 9-dart finish ever achieved at the BDO World Darts Championship.
The 1994 Skol World Darts Championship was held following 18 months of controversy within the sport of darts. After the 1993 Embassy World Championships, several players decided it was time to part company with the British Darts Organisation and form their own organisation. The new organisation was known as the World Darts Council (WDC). The WDC would later become the Professional Darts Corporation (PDC).
Gary Anderson is a Scottish professional darts player, currently playing in the Professional Darts Corporation, and a former BDO and WDF world number one. He is a two-time PDC World Champion, having won the title in 2015 and 2016. He is widely regarded as one of the greatest darts players of all time. His nickname is The Flying Scotsman.
The split in darts refers to an acrimonious dispute between top professional darts players and the game's governing body, the British Darts Organisation (BDO), in 1993. The players were discontented by the game's big decline in television coverage in 1989 and the early 1990s, and by what they saw as the BDO's inability to reverse that decline, culminating in 16 top ranked players, including every previous world champion who was still active, breaking away from the BDO to form their own organisation, the World Darts Council (WDC).
David Chisnall is an English professional darts player from St Helens who plays in Professional Darts Corporation (PDC) events. He began his career participating in the British Darts Organisation (BDO) and was the runner-up in their World Championship in 2010. He switched to the PDC a year later. He has won 15 Pro Tour events. Since his switch to the PDC, Chisnall is probably best known for defeating Phil Taylor in the 2012 World Championship, for reaching the final of the 2013 World Grand Prix where he was beaten 6–0 by Taylor and for reaching the final of the 2014 Grand Slam of Darts, losing a much closer match 16–13, again to Phil Taylor. He is yet to win a major title. He hit his only televised nine-dart finish in the 2015 Grand Slam of Darts against Peter Wright. He has won 15 PDC ranking events. Chisnall's manager is Roger Schena, who often tours with him during tournaments.
Peter Wright is a Scottish darts player who plays in PDC tournaments. Wright is the reigning PDC World Champion after winning the 2020 PDC World Darts Championship. Wright currently resides in Mendham, Suffolk, England and although he was largely brought up in England he chooses to represent the country of his birth. Before becoming a professional darts player, Wright was a tyre fitter.
The 2013 Ladbrokes World Darts Championship was the 20th World Championship organised by the Professional Darts Corporation since it separated from the British Darts Organisation. The event took place at the Alexandra Palace, London between 14 December 2012 and 1 January 2013.
The 2017 William Hill World Darts Championship was the 24th World Championship organised by the Professional Darts Corporation since it separated from the British Darts Organisation. The event took place at Alexandra Palace in London from 15 December 2016 to 2 January 2017.
The three dart average in darts is the average score achieved with three darts thrown. Averages are the most cited statistics in matches as they give a rough estimate how well the player played. The longer a match game lasts, the harder it is to maintain a high average as low scoring legs or missed darts at a double bring the average down.
Robert Cross is an English professional darts player who plays in Professional Darts Corporation events, and was the 2018 PDC World Darts Champion, following his victory over Phil Taylor. Cross won the World Championship on his debut, having turned professional just 11 months prior to the event. He is currently ranked No. 4 on the PDC world rankings.