Dobey & Dobey: Father Figures and A New Darting Double Act?

CHRIS DOBEY, is delighting in the role of dad, but it has reminded him of the efforts, and sacrifices, made by his own father. The northeast star wants to help his dad become an oche star as a thank you for putting him on the road to glory.

The Bedlington barnstormer is in the Scottish management team of Dunvegan Darts, owned by Tommy Gilmour MBE, and he’s gradually becoming a big hitter on the oche. But his biggest wish is to help dad Gordon – a long-time pal of Gary Anderson – finally get a chance at the big time.

Throughout the 1990s Dobey senior chose to support his young family in Northumberland as a foreman on a building site rather than go for darting success.

Now Chris wants to pay for his dad to enter Q School at the age of 57. He added: “I would love to see my dad give it a crack, even one go at Q School. I still believe that he could get a Tour Card. 

“He did so much and didn’t play as much so he could work and give us all a good upbringing. 

“If not this January, the one after, and we’ll see what he’s got.”

Dobey, 30, is now up to No.20 in the PDC Order of Merit after a cracking 2019 which included reaching the semi-finals at both the World Grand Prix and Players Championship Finals.

He said: “I was playing good stuff on the back end of last year. I made two major semis and had a decent run at the Worlds again. 

“I also had a good run at Minehead for the UK Open and obviously I was setting myself up for playing the Premier League at Newcastle, the same week everything just stopped. It was going to be a north-east derby with Glen Durrant.

Dobey and Durrant (The Double D’s) are scheduled to appear in Darts World ‘Player’s Lounge’ very soon!

But Hollywood’s career was given a huge boost prior to 2020:

“The one good run at the Grand Prix in Dublin when I reached the semi-final and then took that into the Players Championships and I reached another last four,

it’s all about confidence and experience.

“It’s actually going to be hard going back after lockdown. Obviously the virus needs to be cleared up beforehand. But it is nice to spend time with the family. I have been on a couple of long walks just to get a bit of fresh air and try and keep myself fit a little bit.

“To be honest it’s not as bad as what I thought it would be. It’s given me the kick up the backside to practice and that’s all I seem to be doing. That and just spending time with the little one.”

It seems that the Dobey’s enjoy more than just a love of darts. Two dedicated father figures could be about to become a unique double-act on the PDC tour


Pix: Taylor Lanning

Freemium 11: 2017 World Champions Issue!

Our archive of darting history is constantly expanding and a selected is available ‘free to view’ for the duration of the UK Covid-19 lockdown. The February 2017 edition is a superb example of the traditional World Champions focus that is often the focus of that month:

Whatever your darting interest, there’ll be something for you!

With a recent change in ownership, Darts World is embarking on a new era in its history and exciting times lie ahead, including some innovative developments that are coming this summer. Make sure you keep up to date at dartsworld.com

In the meantime, enjoy our gift of free content to you by clicking here and signing up: FREEMIUM


Home Tour: De Decker Claims Play-Off Group As Bunting Fades.

Mike De Decker became the second player through to the Semi-Finals of the Low6 Home Tour Play-Offs, as he topped the table ahead of Glen Durrant, Stephen Bunting and Alan Tabern on Night Two. 

Bunting started his play offs strongly but a heavy defeat, in his final game, allowed De Dekker to claim the group.


The young Belgian started the night off with a narrow 6-5 defeat to Bunting, but then got his first win on the board with the victory by the same scoreline against Tabern, recovering brilliantly from 5-2 down. 

Going into the fifth game of the night, he needed a convincing win to put pressure on the top of the table and did exactly that by beating three-time BDO Champion Durrant 6-4, but was still left waiting on the final result of the night to go his way. 

And go his way it did, as Bunting, who was searching for a third straight win to top the group, started to struggle on his scoring and let Tabern run away as a 6-2 winner. 

The heavy defeat for Bunting meant he finished in second, two behind De Decker on leg difference. The 24-year-old joins Jelle Klaasen in the Semi-Finals.

The Low6 Home Tour continues tomorrow with two-time World Champion Gary Anderson in action. All the action can be watched live and free through PDCTV for registered users (new users can sign up for FREE here), as well as through bookmakers’ websites and international broadcasters.

Registered PDCTV members can also watch for FREE through the official PDC App.

Low6 Home Tour Play-Offs
Group Two – Wednesday May 27 (1930 BST)
Stephen Bunting 6-5 Mike De Decker
Glen Durrant 6-3 Alan Tabern
Mike De Decker 6-5 Alan Tabern
Stephen Bunting 6-3 Glen Durrant
Glen Durrant 4-6 Mike De Decker
Alan Tabern 6-2 Stephen Bunting

Fans in the UK & Ireland can watch through the Sky Sports App.

Bunting “Scared” of Return to Big Stage. Bullet Vulnerable Due to Diabetes.

STEPHEN BUNTING is ready to step up his bid to be lockdown champion but admits he is “scared” about the sport returning to the big stage. The former BDO World Champion, talking exclusively to Darts World, continues his aim to be the first-ever PDC Home Tour winner tonight (Weds) against Glen Durrant, Alan Tavern, and Mike De Decker.

But The Bullet, 35, revealed he has major concerns about the re-start of sport during the coronavirus crisis.He said: “It’s tough to see what happens now if the Matchplay goes ahead because I haven’t had the chance to qualify for it as I’m World No.17. The tournaments I would have had to qualify haven’t happened.

“Also when we get back to full speed, how are they going to fit all these tournaments in? They are probably going to have to do five Pro Tours a week. “But is it safer for us to go over to Germany and play because restrictions have been lifted over there. 

“I’m not being funny but I’ve got Type 2 diabetes, I don’t want to be getting on a plane with loads of other people. There’s a lot of things to sort. “There’s a huge death rate with this disease for those who have diabetes. “I am more susceptible to death than most. The figures are there to show that. That’s why I’ve been more scared to leave the house because you just don’t know.“

Look at Kenny Dalglish. He was a carrier but no symptoms. So if we re-start the tour, who’s to say that no one has got it unless we are all tested? “At the same time, we want to get back playing again. It’s a really hard situation.”

Despite all the worries, Bunting is confident of going all the way to being the first-ever lockdown World Champion – now that’s he moved his board.He added: “The board was downstairs just as you come in the front door. But over the last few days I’ve been moving stuff around. “I’ve got a three storey house so I’ve now put my son Toby on the top floor. My practice board is now in his old bedroom. It’s a lot more secure.“

In the past I’ve been practising when the postman has been at the door or deliveries. It was a bit of an annoyance. “It also backed onto the living room so the wife had to keep the TV noise down and that wasn’t fair for her either.“

I think it looks pretty good and I played in an online tournament on Monday against Ricky Evans and a few others and got to the semi-final. But I played some really good stuff. “You are playing the best players in the world. To be the first lockdown World Champion would be a great achievement. “Obviously I’ve been practicing and getting ready for it. I’ve got a very tough group but if I can play the way I did in the first group, I’ll be OK. My first nine-dart average was pretty big so if I can keep that up and finish good, I’ve got a chance of winning the whole thing.“

Me and Alan (Tabern) over the years have had some great games, both from St Helens so there’s a bit of rivalry there. “Glen Durrant has come over to the PDC and done pretty much the same as I did. That’ll be a good game because I don’t think we’ve played each other since he came across from the BDO.“Mike De Decker is also playing well to qualify so three different games but all very hard in other ways.

“It’s a tournament that you want to win. You could be the first name on that trophy, it also may also be the only name ever as it may never happen again. Hopefully the only lockdown World Champion!

“I think the novelty bit has worn off now. It’s a proper tournament you want to win. Playing in this is actually similar to the Pro Tour.“There’s no noise, all you can hear is your opponent behind you. What I do is put the streaming on my TV which is behind me.

“That means it’s my normal rhythm. I turn round to watch them throw, then step forward for my throw just like I normally do. It feels more natural. I find that easier because you pace yourself.”


Darts World Freemium Day 3: Duzza Three-Peats Himself!

Check out our Freemium area where we have selected over 50 issues of Darts World for you to read absolutely free!

Our unforgettable February 2019 issue featured Glen Durrant’s historic ‘three-peat’ in the Lakeside World Championship, the JDC World Cup and the great John Lowe’s MBE.

The magazine also includes some great features on that years’ World Championships and a very interesting profile of Peter Wright, with the author debating whether he would remain in the top 4!

For free access to this issue and over fifty more, whatever your particular area of interest in darts, our Freemium archive will cater for you. Click here to see for yourself

Darts World is delighted to offer darts fans free access to over 50 past issues of Darts World for the remaining duration of the current Covid-19 dominated period:

The selected issues cover much of the darting drama from across the globe over the last five years, whilst we’ve also included some bonus vintage issues.


Durrant and Bunting To Clash As Home Tour Groups Published.

Premier League Leader Glen Durrant has been drawn in a tough group for the next stage of the PDC Home Tour 2020. Three-time World Champion Duzza will clash with Stephan Bunting in group two:

Is your favourite amongst those who will feature in the second stage ?

The eight groups have been confirmed for the Low6 Home Tour Play-Offs ahead of the tournament’s return on May 26.

The last 32 nights have seen elite level darts brought from the homes of 101 PDC Tour Card Holders around the world to the homes of fans through remote live broadcasts.

The Home Tour action included a brilliant nine-darter from Luke Woodhouse in Group Two, while PDC World Champions Peter Wright, Rob Cross and Gary Anderson were amongst the players who topped their group to progress to the second phase.

The 32 group winners are now set to compete in the Play-Offs over a further 11 consecutive nights of live action from Tuesday May 26 onwards, with a champion crowned at the climax of the tournament on Friday June 5. 

The 32 players have been seeded in order of their PDC Order of Merit ranking for the Last 32, and placed into groups based on the regular PDC seeding pattern.
 
The players who win Groups One-Four will proceed to play in Semi-Final One on Wednesday June 3, with the winners from Groups Five-Eight moving through to Semi-Final Two on Thursday June 4.
 
The top two players from each of the Semi-Final groups will then move through to compete in the Championship Group on Friday June 5.
 
All games from the Last 32 onwards are the best of 11 legs, with each group being a round-robin format.


Full details here

Unsung Heroes – Chris Thompson, The Hitman

Darts World’s regular look at those players whose career or contribution to the sport of darts may have been overlooked, under-credited or faded with time.

During a recent interview with Darts World magazine, three-time World Champion Glen Durrant raised an eyebrow or two when he stated that a certain player was in fact “a far better player than me”.

Although Durrant added that it was some time ago that he had battled with Chris Thompson, it was still a very generous compliment. So, who is ‘The Hitman’?

The story starts at the 1985 Yorkshire Boys Club Championships in Hunslet. Thompson, then aged just 13, was persuaded to enter and emerged as the champion, without dropping a leg!

A very talented young player, at the age of 16 and already standing over 6 feet tall, Thompson ventured into the pub leagues in York. He soon claimed the York individual title, beating a host of top local players including Barry Noble and Stuart Holden, earning himself an invitation to the Yorkshire Super League in the process.

After a couple of successful seasons, Mick Nixon, captain of Humberside, recruited Thompson to his county squad. This proved excellent experience for Thompson as he had the opportunity to play alongside high quality players such as Vijay Kumar and John Pickering. After a further season in the Yorkshire Super League, Thompson was then invited to join the full Yorkshire squad and he lent on his fellow player and friend, Stuart Holden, for advice:

“By this time Stuart Holden had become a close friend and advisor. He thought that it was too early for me to join Yorkshire and encouraged me to remain with Humberside. I took this advice and ended up playing over 50 games for Humberside. After a few more invites from Yorkshire, Stuart eventually advised me that the time was right for me to join the “big boys” at Yorkshire”.

Following six consecutive wins in the Yorkshire B Team, Thompson was promoted to the Yorkshire A-Team, a huge landmark in his career. He eventually went on to play over a hundred matches for Yorkshire and was made captain of a team that included the likes of John ‘Boy‘ Walton, Scott Waites, Martin Atkins and Garry Thompson, under the famed management of Peter Senior.

Thompson’s next career milestone was qualifying for the News of the World Grand Finals, beating Lancashire’s Paul Williams in the final qualifier, thus making his television debut.

In 2000 Thompson claimed the Yorkshire Classic beating John Walton in the final, whilst he also struck up a very successful pairs partnership with Martin Atkins, with whom he remains close, both as a player and a friend.

Whilst progressing in the BDO, Thompson had kept a close eye on the PDC circuit and in 2007 he ultimately decided that the prize money available was too enticing to ignore:

“I decided to leave the BDO circuit and concentrate on the PDC, this was the best move I ever made”.

In his second season in the PDC, Thompson reached the quarter-finals of the UK Open, losing out 10-5 to Vincent Van Der Voort. This proved a springboard to further success as he went on to reach eight pro-tour semi-finals, including “the most memorable day” of his darting career in Las Vegas. On that day he defeated Gary Mawson, Kirk Shepherd, Mark Walsh, Terry Jenkins, and Andy Hamilton.

In the quarter final the invincible Phil Taylor awaited. Thompson states that he “played the game of my life” in beating the ‘The Power’ 6-5, with an average of over 114 before losing to Simon Whitlock in the semi-final. The next day Taylor took his revenge beating Thompson 6-0, costing him a place at the World Matchplay.

Later that year ‘The Hitman’ reached the World Championships for the first time. His first-round opponent at the Alexandra Palace was Darts World columnist Colin Osborne who showed his experience in defeating the York man 3-1.

Subsequently, Thompson’s form dipped and he struggled, eventually losing his tour card. Sadly, efforts to try and win a new tour card were unsuccessful and he took the difficult decision to quit his career within the PDC.

‘The Hitman’ still plays locally once a week at his local pub The Green Tree in York and says:

“I really enjoy the social aspect of the local league again.

However, my will to win has never deserted me, and my opponent, whoever they are, will always get 100% from me, I have always played to win no matter what the circumstances.

People always ask me if I miss the darts and my response is always “a bit, but I miss the friends I have made, and the crack we had, a lot more”.


  • JR Lott with Chris Thompson
  • Pix: PDC
  • Originally published in Darts World Magazine (569) April 2020
  • JEGL

Unibet Home Tour 19 & 20: Durrant Dominant As Murray Springs Surprise.

Glen Durrant picked up a hat-trick of victories to top Group 19 of the Unibet Home Tour on Tuesday night.

Another Good Night For Duzza! (PIC;LAWRENCE LUSTIG GLEN DURRANT IN ACTION)

Premier League table-topper Durrant picked up where he left off just over six weeks ago as he averaged 101.8 in a 5-1 defeat of Dutchman Vincent van der Meer in his opening game of the night.

Durrant followed that up with a 5-3 defeat Justin Pipe, who was Durrant’s nearest challenger on the night, finishing second with two victories.

Heading into the final game of the evening, Durrant knew he needed four legs against Maik Kuivenhoven to top the group ahead of Pipe.

The 50-year-old duly delivered with a 100.1 average to see off Kuivenhoven 5-3, ensuring he ended the night undefeated.

Ryan Murray won the Unibet Home Tour Group 20 on Wednesday, edging out Joe Cullen to take the honours.

The Scot enjoyed a successful night, winning matches against Jermaine Wattimena and John Michael as he held onto top spot.

Cullen had defeated Murray 5-4 and also saw off Michael 5-3 in the night’s final contest, but missed match darts against Wattimena as he lost in a deciding leg cost the Yorkshireman dearly.

The Unibet Home Tour continues on Thursday, with world number four Rob Cross in action in Group 21.

The Unibet Home Tour can be watched live and free through PDCTV for registered users (new users can sign up for FREE here), as well as through bookmakers’ websites and international broadcasters.

Unibet Home Tour 
Group 19 – Tuesday May 5
Glen Durrant 5-1 Vincent van der Meer
Justin Pipe 5-1 Maik Kuivenhoven
Maik Kuivenhoven 5-1 Vincent van der Meer
Glen Durrant 5-3 Justin Pipe
Justin Pipe 5-2 Vincent van der Meer
Glen Durrant 5-3 Maik Kuivenhoven


Group 20 – Wednesday May 6 (1930 BST)
Joe Cullen 5-4 Ryan Murray
Jermaine Wattimena 2-5 John Michael
Ryan Murray 5-3 John Michael
Joe Cullen 4-5 Jermaine Wattimena
Jermaine Wattimena 1-5 Ryan Murray
John Michael 3-5 Joe Cullen

Unibet Home Tour: More Fixtures Announced!

Premier League table-topper Glen Durrant will make his Unibet Home Tour bow next week, with the line-ups and fixtures confirmed for Groups 17-20.

Durrant, a three-time Lakeside Champion, will headline Tuesday’s Group 19 action, while Joe Cullen, Stephen Bunting, Jeffrey de Zwaan and John Henderson are also set to feature as the home-broadcast event continues.
 
Sunday will see the 17th of 32 consecutive nights of live darts take place, as popular Scot Henderson takes on Poland’s Krzysztof Kciuk in the opening game of Group 17, which will also see Australia’s Damon Heta – in the middle of the night in Perth – and fellow 2020 PDC Tour Card winner Gary Blades in action.

Former Premier League stars Bunting and Kim Huybrechts will compete in Monday’s Group 18, along with Austria’s Harald Leitinger and Norfolk’s Nathan Derry.

Durrant will meet Vincent van der Meer in the opening game of Group 19 on Tuesday, before former World Grand Prix semi-finalist Justin Pipe and Van der Meer’s fellow Dutchman Maik Kuivenhoven enter the live broadcast.

Wednesday’s mouth-watering Group 20 line-up will feature multiple ranking event winners Joe Cullen and Jeffrey de Zwaan along with emerging Scottish talent Ryan Murray, while experienced John Michael will dial in from Greece.

The nightly league format will see all four competitors play each other once in matches played over the best of nine legs, with a winner crowned each night.

With the Unibet Home Tour now approaching the half-way mark, the past week has seen Germany’s Max Hopp and two-time TV semi-finalist Chris Dobey join the list of group winners.

Meanwhile, Hong Kong’s Kai Fan Leung and his dog Bauble stole the show during Wednesday’s Group 14, staying up beyond 5am local time to take part.

Each night’s action will commence at 1930 BST, with darts commentator Dan Dawson on hand to talk through proceedings, which will also include live score graphics on screen.

All Unibet Home Tour action will be broadcast live on PDCTV for FREE to ALLregistered PDCTV users, regardless of whether you have a paid or free membership.

Registered PDCTV members can also watch for FREE through the official PDC App.

Fans in Great Britain and Ireland can also watch the action through the Sky Sports app.

As well as being shown through a series of bookmakers’ websites, the Unibet Home Tour is being broadcast live by a number of the PDC’s international broadcast partners.

Unibet Home Tour
Group 17 Fixtures
Sunday May 3

John Henderson v Krzysztof Kciuk
Damon Heta v Gary Blades
Krzysztof Kciuk v Gary Blades
John Henderson v Damon Heta
Damon Heta v Krzysztof Kciuk
Gary Blades v John Henderson

Group 18 Fixtures
Monday May 4

Stephen Bunting v Harald Leitinger
Kim Huybrechts v Nathan Derry
Harald Leitinger v Nathan Derry
Stephen Bunting v Kim Huybrechts
Kim Huybrechts v Harald Leitinger
Nathan Derry v Stephen Bunting

Group 19 Fixtures
Tuesday May 5

Glen Durrant v Vincent van der Meer
Justin Pipe v Maik Kuivenhoven
Vincent van der Meer v Maik Kuivenhoven
Glen Durrant v Justin Pipe
Justin Pipe v Vincent van der Meer
Maik Kuivenhoven v Glen Durrant

Group 20 Fixtures
Wednesday May 6

Joe Cullen v Ryan Murray
Jeffrey de Zwaan v John Michael
Ryan Murray v John Michael
Joe Cullen v Jeffrey de Zwaan
Jeffrey de Zwaan v Ryan Murray
John Michael v Joe Cullen

Tournament Rules
* All matches are the best of nine legs.
* The player listed on the left of the fixture will throw first in odd-numbered legs.
* Two Points awarded for a win.
* Should players finish level on Points, the Leg Difference will be used to decide positions. Should Points and Leg Difference be equal between two players, then the winner of the game between the two players will determine who finishes higher. Should Points and Leg Difference be equal between three players, the Overall Average of each player (across the three games on the night) will be used to determine who finishes higher.

Phil Taylor and Michael van Gerwen

Nine Dart Nuggets: Who’s Missing? Who Stands Out and Who Dominates?

Since the start of the 2020 season there has been much comment on the regularity of 9-Dart Legs. These perfect moments are one of darts unique features and, as such, they are the source of much discussion. While looking into them we came across a few nuggets of 9-dart news that were too good not to share:

Lewis & Barney Head HappyBet German Darts Masters UK Qualifiers
Lewis & Barney – Twenty Perfect legs between them. Pic: L Lustig

Nine: How many times Nine?

Competitive and authenticated 9-dart legs have been struck by 131 different players between today in 1976 and 2020. Only thirty-six players have done it more than once. fifteen three-plus times and The Power, MVG and Jackpot are alone in the ‘double figures club’.

Eight: Oatcakes are the Key.

Stoke-on-Trent is the ‘official’ home of the nine dart hitter! Potteries natives, and adopted sons, have collected over forty perfect legs between them. Phil Taylor (21) Adrian Lewis (11) Ian White (5) and Andy Hamilton (3) lead the line for ‘The Potters’.

Seven: Nowt for the Count.

A glaring ommission?

Missing from the list are a number of legends both past and present. Ted Hankey, for example, has not recorded a ‘niner’. Less surprising are those who rose to fame before John Lowe’s breaking of the bogey. Martin Adams does not seem to have claimed a perfect moment despite multiple world and major titles.

Six: One Shot John?

Old Stoneface may have fired the starting gun, hitting the his TV nine darter in 1984, but did not register another. Despite playing at the highest level for another twenty years, after picking up £100,000 for being the first, John Lowe only features once. Perhaps the drop in prize money was too big!

Duzza holds a special place in the 9-Dart annals. Pic: Christopher Dean

Five: On a Pair.

Glen Durrant has a unique claim. He and Claire Stainsby hit the 9-Dart doubles leg during the British international Open in 2013. Glen also appears, solo, in our list. Thus Duzza, is the only person to have officially recorded perfect legs as part of a pair and whilst standing alone!

Four: The Iceman Not Yet Cometh.

Gerwyn Price is the highest ranked player not to have made his mark on the 9-Dart bedpost. The Welshman famously hit a ‘unofficial 9-darter’ between sessions during a televised match in 2019 but he has yet to hit one in the heat of battle.

Unicorn Darts is voted Best Darts Brand 2016
Perfect Darts? Unicorn seem to dominate the 9-Dart stats.

Three: Chasing Unicorns.

Unicorn darts can easily claim the greatest success rate, and barrel style, even a casual look at the table reveals that the first TV 9-darter, the first live UK 9 darter, the first Ally Pally and many more were completed by Unicorn men. Taylor, Barney, Jackpot, Wade, Anderson and White have hit many with their Unicorn barrels. A rough count gives them over 50 of darts great moments.

Two: Original & Unique.

Kyle Anderson stands out from other players toward the top of the list. The Australian has hit 6 ‘niners’, in his relatively short career, placing him seventh overall . He is yet to win a major trophy or even reach the final. He has claimed only a single Pro Tour level win and has not troubled the elite rankings in terms of the top ten, or even top sixteen,and is currently ranked outside the top forty. It should be remembered that he is only 32 years old, and may well have more to come.

Even with new arrows MVG hits a perfect note

One: Mighty Impressive!

MVG appears set to blow a hole in most of these stats. He is still only thirty, and at the peak of his powers, but has already hit the youngest TV ‘niner’ and the first World Championship one with a varied the route (he went T19 on his 6th dart). Micheal heads most lists, for total 9-darters hit, and has already added a couple more in recent times. The fact he has hit one, or more, with his new weapons should bode well for those wishing to see records broken and new ground struck.


9 Dart Stats, all events from 1976-2020, courtesy of: http://dartsdatabase.com