PDC World Championship Betting

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The history of the PDC World Darts Championship may stretch back to 1994, but in all that time there is one name that keeps getting mentioned over and over again—thirteen-time champion Phil Taylor. He was runner-up to fellow Englishman Dennis Priestley in the inaugural event, but that was simply the prelude to a string of eight straight championships, including four triumphs over his initial rival in the finals.

In 2003, Canada’s John Part, who had lost to Taylor 7-0 in 2001, finally snapped the winning streak, outlasting the English phenomenon in the PDC World Championship’s most exciting finals ever. In fact, Taylor actually finished up with a higher average than the Canadian challenger, 99.98 to 96.87, but the championship is contest decided on games won, not points scored, and Part eked out the ultimate victory 7-6.

If anything, that setback seemed to enliven Taylor, and he stormed back to win three more titles in a row from 2004 to 2006. Then, the unthinkable happened. Dutch professional Raymond van Barneveld outscored the champion 100.93 to 100.86 en route to a 7-6 win in 2007—the first ever and only triumph for a player from outside the British Commonwealth.

That loss may have demoralized Taylor somewhat, as he failed to make the finals in 2008, leaving England’s Kirk Shepherd to battle a rejuvenated John Part. The Canadian scored his second victory with a convincing 7-2 finish. Was that the end of the Phil Taylor Era?

Not by a long shot. In 2009, vengeance was swift as Taylor demolished van Barneveld 7-1 and set a new tournament record for highest winning average, outpointing his foe 110.94 to 101.18. Taylor won again in 2010, dispatching Australian pro Simon Whitlock 7-3 and picking up a £zero,000 paycheck from the PDC’s first-ever £1,000,000 prize fund.

The PDC World Championship grew out of a dispute with the British Darts Organisation, which has staged its own world championship since 1978. From the very start, this has been a commercially sponsored event, backed by Skol, Proton, Vernons, and Red Band until 2003, when ladbrokes.com, the current title sponsor, took the lead. For its first fourteen years, the event was held the Circus Tavern in Purfleet, but the venue has shifted to Alexandra Palace in London since 2008.

The format for the PDC World Championship is single elimination, with a round of preliminaries. Best of seven sets are played in the first three rounds. Quarterfinals are best of nine, Semi-finals are best of eleven, and the Finals are best of thirteen. Unlike many sports, this contest also features a playoff for third and fourth place, which means even more betting opportunities.

Ante post wagering on the ladbrokes.com PDC World Darts Championship starts as early as January, a full year in advance of the finals, just as soon as the current year’s winner is known. It gains momentum throughout the darts season, including World Matchplay, the European Championship, Championship League action, and the Players Championship Finals.

Betting is heaviest, of course, when the World Championship matches begin in December. A broad range of markets is available, including wagering on the outright winner as well as the ever-popular “Taylor vs. The Field.”

Apart from straight-up bets on head-to-head match-ups, wagers can be placed on Most 180s, Total 180s, First Nine Dart Finish, and Nine Dart Finish, as well as To Reach Semi Final, To Make the Final, and Name the Finalists. For the latter, both players selected must advance to the final showdown. Accumulators can also be structured, to create even greater payout possibilities.

In 2011, John Part crashed out in the second round of action and Dennis Preistley came up short in round three, while Taylor and van Barneveld both reached the Quarterfinals. But both former champs fell to younger contenders, leaving four fresh faces in the semi-final round. Eventually, England’s Adrian Lewis emerged as the new titleholder after sending Mark Webster off 6-4 and then besting Gary Anderson in the Finals 7-5, which included twenty 180s and the first ever perfect leg in a World Championship final.

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