Recently, the BDO World Darts Championships occurred, and with the event regarded as the opening major of the calendar year, it seemed the majority of players were aiming to win the tournament, perhaps in turn elevating their motivation to achieve throughout the rest of 2017. The top seed prior to the tournament was Englishman Glen Durrant, and this ranking may have resulted in him seemingly being billed as the favourite; yet, it seemed many players possessed the capabilities to claim the crown, most notably Martin Adams, competing in his 24th consecutive World Championship. Yet, it was indeed the number one seed who won his first World Championship, suggesting he may be playing at a high standard and possesses the ability to win further titles.
With the tournament competed between the top 24 ranked players in the world, along with 8 qualifiers, it seemed the competition contained multiple players who warranted the opportunity to contest for the title, perhaps leading to an intriguing spectacle. In the opening round, the majority of the seeded players seemed to play at a high standard, with Durrant, Adams and Hughes all advancing into the quarter-finals. Yet, many players emerged victorious versus opponents ranked in the top 16 in the world, which may suggest the BDO contains a vast amount of accomplished players possessing the quality to emerge victorious versus any opponent. This occurred most notably in the aforementioned quarter-finals, with Dutch number one Danny Noppert gaining victory versus reigning champion Scott Waites en route to the final, seemingly using his superior ranking to his advantage.
The final was therefore contested between Noppert, the third seed, and the top seed Durrant and, considering the Englishman boasted the superior ranking, it seemed he may have been the favourite to claim the trophy for the first time. Yet, in the opening sets, it seemed either player may have emerged victorious at the climax of the match, with the first six sets shared evenly between the two players. With Noppert having led 2-1 earlier in the match, Durrant seemed to utilise his opponent’s performance in a productive manner, seemingly elevating his motivation in order to win four consecutive sets and win via a 7-3 score line. With Durrant claiming the £100,000 first prize, the tournament may enable him to increase his darting repertoire, and become an overall more accomplished player. Yet, both finalists may be able to utilise the tournament in a productive manner as, since both were competing in their first World Championship final, it may suggest there is a young, fresh batch of players capable of entering, and competing versus, the elite.
Durrant’s victory may suggest he is amongst the most accomplished players on the BDO tour, and may possess the quality to challenge for further honours. With a 100% record in major finals, winning in all five of his visits to the oche, he may be showcasing the reasoning as to why he seems to be regarded as one of the most proficient players in the BDO, and may even possess the capabilities to transition, and succeed, in the PDC. Yet, perhaps his crowning glory may be his ranking of number one, the pinnacle of the sport, a position he has holds by 100 points, seemingly highlighting his consistency at the highest level; it may be this consistency enabling him to achieve further records, and trophies, in the sport.
With the Dutch Open the next major tournament in the calendar, it seems all of the players who competed at Lakeside may be looking to earn prize money, and perhaps more importantly a trophy. Durrant may be regarded as the favourite for the tournament, as his placement at the top of the rankings, coupled with seemingly taking the plaudits after victory in the aforementioned tournament, may place him in a strong position. Ultimately though, whoever the eventual winners in the upcoming tournaments, there may be an increased level of recognition for the BDO, as after the coverage of the World Championship on Channel 4, the organisation has been broadcast to the masses, perhaps leading to young viewers to be motivated to compete or, perhaps even more importantly, re-attracting top talent from the PDC.
How may Durrant utilise this victory to ensure he maintains his number one status?