Darts Players Championship Finals Betting Offers 2021
Since the split in the world of darts in 1992, there has been something of a battle over the televised and un-televised events that the two governing bodies put on. The Professional Darts Corporation decided to ensure that the players that were involved in the non-televised tournaments got a fair shake, so in 2008 they announced this tournament.
It was originally limited to the top 32 players from the Players Championship Order Of Merit, which was a ranking system that only takes points won in non-televised events on the PDC Pro Tour into account. In 2016 the decision was taken to broaden the field to include the top 64 players that took part in the 30 Players Championship events throughout the year.
On this page you can find event information and if you plan to bet we’ve compiled the best betting offers for you to do so.
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Players Championship Finals Format & Schedule 2021
|Date||Stage||Legs (Best Of)|
|26th November||First Round||11|
|27th November||Second Round||11|
|27th November||Third Round||19|
The move to being a competition for 32 players to one for 64 players might well have meant that more people can take part in the event, but it has also meant that the format for it is more complicated. Here’s a look at how it works:
Qualification for the Players Championship Finals is awarded to the top 64 players on the Players Championships Order of Merit. That is based on prize money won during the 30 different Players Championships tournaments played throughout the season.
The 30 Players Championship tournaments are not televised, with a further 13 European Tour events not counting towards the qualification for this. With 128 players being granted Tour Cards, you can see why there’s a need to put a limit on the number of players that are able to take part in the Finals and also why the decision was taken to expand it from 32 players to 64.
The First Stage
No draw is held for the competition. Instead, the players are put into a fixed bracket according to their seeded position. The 64 players are split up into the top half and the bottom half, with the player ranked 1 playing the player ranked 64 and so on.
The top half is then broken up further into two groups of 16, as is the bottom half. The first and second rounds of the first stage are played in a best of 11 legs format, whilst the third round and quarter-finals are played in a best of 19 legs format.
At the end of the first round the 8 winning players in the four different sections advance to the second round. The 4 winning players there advance to the third round and the 2 winners from that move into the four different quarter-finals.
Once the 8 players for the quarter-finals have been decided the final phase of the competition gets underway. Here the 2 players that reached the quarter-final of Section 1 go up against each other, as do the 2 players from Section 2, the 2 from Section 3 and the 2 from Section 4.
Once those games have been decided the winners advance into the competition’s semi-final stage. That is played in a best of 21 legs format, with the winners advancing to the final.
The final is also played in a best of 21 legs format, with the eventual winner being declared as the Players Championship Finals champion and the best player of all of those that won points in the non-televised tournaments.
|Stage Player Left The Competition||Prize Money Awarded|
As mentioned elsewhere in this piece, the prize money for the Players Championship Finals has gone up year on year. Here’s a look at how the overall prize pool has increased since the competition’s inauguration.
Total Prize Money Available:
- 2009 – £200,000
- 2010-13 – £250,000
- 2014-15 – £300,000
- 2016 – £400,000
- 2017-18 – £460,000
- 2019-20 – £500,000
The one thing of note is that the competition took place twice in 2011 because that was the year that the decision was taken to switch it from being held in February to being held in December. Rather than have to wait the best part of two years to have the tournament in 2012, the PDC decided to host it twice in the same year instead.
The table above shows how the prize money broke down for the 2020 iteration of the tournament.
The competition has moved around venues since its inaugural year. Back in 2009 it was decided to host it at the Circus Tavern in Purfleet for the simple reason that that’s where the first 14 PDC World Darts Championship events had been hosted, so the PDC knew it well.
The competition remained in Purfleet the following year and then in 2011 it moved to the Doncaster Dome. The leisure centre and arena had opened its doors in 1989 and was thought to be a good venue because it could host around 2,000 darts fans. The event only lasted a year there before moving on to pastures new, however.
In 2012 it was decided that the tournament would be moved to the holiday camp of Butlins in the Somerset coastal town of Minehead. It had been open since 1962 and had played host to Britain’s Strongest Man a number of times, including in 2004. It has also been used as a venue for the World Wrestling Entertainment’s winter tour since 2006.
It had the pedigree to be able to cope with a large event, therefore, and it was felt that it would be well-suited to host the competition. It was such a success that it has remained there ever since, with the PDC’s UK Open joining it in being hosted by Butlin’s Minehead in 2014.
History Of The Players Championship Finals
In January of 2008 the Chairman of the Professional Darts Corporation, Barry Hearn, announced plans to launched the tournament at the PDC Awards Dinner. The first iteration of the competition was to take place in late January to early February of the following and would be hosted by the Circus Tavern in Purfleet. That had previously hosted the PDC World Championship, so it was a venue known to darts fans.
It was a popular tournament, with Phil ‘The Power’ Taylor beating Robert Thornton 16-9 in the final to win himself £50,000. The following year the prize money was increased to £60,000 for the winner, though the runner-up’s share of the prize pool dropped from £25,000 to £24,000.
As you would expect from a competition that has grown in popularity every year, the total prize pool has grown with each tournament. By 2019 the champion was receiving £100,000, with the runner-up getting £50,000. The prize pool itself had grown from £200,000 in 2009 to £500,000 ten years years later.
Perhaps somewhat ironically for a tournament celebrating the players that have done the best in the non-televised events, the Players Championship Finals has been broadcast on TV since its inaugural edition. Originally it was on ITV4 before moving to PDC TV in 2011. It then returned to ITV4 the year after that and has remained on the terrestrial channel ever since.
Records & Trivia
|Michael van Gerwen||12||7||6 (86%)|
|Phil Taylor||9||4||3 (75%)|
|Gary Anderson||10||2||1 (50%)|
|Kevin Painter||9||1||1 (100%)|
|Paul Nicholson||5||1||1 (100%)|
|Daryl Gurney||5||1||1 (100%)|
The Players Championship Finals is one of few event9s in the darts world that Phil ‘The Power’ Taylor doesn’t find his name at the top of. He appeared in the competition 9 times before his retirement, making the final on 4 occasions and winning 3 of them.
Even so, it is the Dutch darts player Michael van Gerwen who finds himself at the top of the competition’s leader board, having won it 4 times in 5 final appearances. No player has appeared in the tournament more times than Mervyn King, though the Englishman has never won it.
He’s far from what you might call the unluckiest of darts players, however. Adrian Lewis takes that title, having reached 2 finals without winning either of them. That is in stark contrast to Michael van Gerwen, who won 3 finals in quick succession between 2015 and 2017 and two consecutively in 2019 and 2020, having also won it in 2013. Indeed, 2018 was his only final appearance in which he didn’t win.
The first player to achieve a 9 dart finish in the competition’s history were Alan Norris, with the English player doing it in the 1st round in 2016 when he was up against fellow Englishman Michael Smith. He hit 3 treble 20s, 3 treble 20s, a treble 20, treble 19 and then a double 12 for the win. Michael van Gerwen is the only other player to have a nine dart finish in 2020.
Phil Taylor might not be the player that has won this tournament the most but that doesn’t mean that he doesn’t have his name elsewhere on the record books. In his 2013 quarter-final match against Dutchman Raymond van Barneveld he achieved an average of 111.58, which is the tournament record to date.
Croatian Boris Krčmar, meanwhile, has something of the opposition record attached to his name. In his last 64 match against Michael Smith in 2020 he hit an average of 107.79 but still lost 6-5, meaning that he has the best losing average since the tournament began.