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The participants of the Premier League Darts 2021

Darts Premier League 2021

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Alex Krist
Alex Krist

Always at the start with the hottest darts news!

By now it's a good tradition at the PDC. After the final of the World Championship the chairman of the Professional Darts Corporation, in this case it was Matthew Porter, stands in front of the cameras and announces the participants of the coming Premier League season. But not only the participants but also the mode and other regulations were announced. So for the first time this year the Premier League Darts will start from Easter instead of February as usual. In this blog post we take a closer look at this year's participants of the Premier League Darts and tell you who might cause some big surprises.

The top 4 of the PDC world ranking are seeded

As usual the top 4 players of the PDC World Ranking are seeded for the Premier League this year. In the final of the World Championship probably one player was trembling a lot. Because if Gary Anderson would have won this World Championship he would have jumped on exactly this fourth place and would have pushed Rob Cross on rank five. After Cross' bad year, it would have been more than questionable whether Cross would have received a wild card. But the end is known: Price won the final and Cross thus remains in fourth place.

So the four seeded players are:

Rob Cross at Premier League

Especially the top three players in the world have a great chance to win the Premier League this year. Price, van Gerwen and Wright are on good days hardly to beat and of course are the favorites in this Premier League season. The situation is different for Cross, who first has to follow up his performance of the World Championship 2018, which he surprisingly won, to be a serious competitor for the Top 3 again.

The defending champion, Premier League finalist and World Cup finalist are all in!

Two players who are also in the tournament are Glen Durrant and Gary Anderson. With Glen Durrant it was clear anyway: whoever wins the Premier League and is the defending champion will get a Wild Card from the PDC - and rightly so! With Gary Anderson the nomination was not so clear. Just before the World Championship Anderson was absolutely no longer a top player on the PDC circuit. Also in the ranking the Flying Scotsman had to fight to keep his place in the Top 16 of the world. But the participation in the World Championship final gave Anderson a new upswing - financially as well as in the reputation with the competition. He came back and was nominated for the upcoming Premier League for his strong World Championship and his participation in the final. Probably the fact that Anderson is still an important marketing and merchandising attraction for the PDC plays a role in this.

Nathan Aspinall Darts

Nathan Aspinall is also involved, of course. After two semifinal appearances at the World Cup, Aspinall had to pull out in the third round this time. Thanks to other good results in 2020, for example participation in the final of the last Premier League, Aspinall is rightly included.

The two newcomers - van den Bergh and de Sousa are eagerly awaiting their debut

Two players who will take part for the first time in the Premier League Darts 2021 are Jose de Sousa and Dimitri van den Bergh. Already before the World Championship both players were considered as possible candidates for a Wild Card. With one the probability was higher, with the other a little bit lower.

No master has yet fallen from the sky!

In the case of Dimitri van den Bergh, it quickly became clear that as the winner of the prestigious major tournament World Matchplay, van den Bergh had a good chance of participating. During the World Championship, the Belgian again delivered strong performances that further strengthened this assumption. Even though van den Bergh was eliminated in the round of 16, this was not due to his inability: van den Bergh player had an average of more than 101 points in his defeat against Chisnall. So the nomination is absolutely deserved! And van den Bergh is already an unpleasant competition for the established players in the Premier League.

Dimitri van den Bergh Darts

Jose de Sousa - the unknown

Opinions are divided in some quarters when it comes to Jose de Sousa. Yes: Jose de Sousa won the Grand Slam of Darts 2020, an important major title in the calendar year. But the question many are asking is: Is Jose de Sousa already far enough in his development to take part in the Premier League Darts. Already at the World Championship it showed that de Sousa is not yet able to play consistently well over several months. In the flat 0:4 against Mervyn King in the third round of the World Championship de Sousa looked partly without a chance.

But the PDC's choice of de Sousa is understandable for two reasons: first of all, as winner of a Major tournament de Sousa is without question a fair contender for one of the coveted Premier League places. And secondly de Sousa comes from a country where the PDC still sees a lot of potential to market itself. Jose de Sousa is from Portugal. It's no secret that the PDC is always happy when players from nations win titles where darts is not yet so well known. That was the case with Kim Huybrechts, who was suddenly announced as a Premier League contender after a strong year. Huybrechts couldn't withstand the pressure back then and went down without a sound. It will be whether de Sousa here after a good year with the PDC is able to keep up with the world's greats in the Premier League.

The tenth participant: the big question mark?

Unlike in the last two years the PDC this season will do without the so called challengers who were allowed to take part once in the Premier League. Instead another permanent player will play the Premier League Darts. Matthew Porter said that the selection is currently so big that every player will have the chance to prove himself at the Masters end of January 2021.

  1. Possible contenders for this tenth place in the Premier League have, among others:

    • Dave Chisnall
    • Stephen Bunting
    • James Wade
    • Dirk van Duijvenbode
    • Joe Cullen
    • Michael Smith
    • Daryl Gurney

    The prerequisite is probably a good performance at the first major tournament of the year, the Masters, at the end of January.

    What do you think? Who should be the tenth starter in the Premier

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