BETVICTOR TO SPONSOR BETVICTOR WORLD MATCHPLAY
The leading betting and gaming company, whose website www.betvictor.com offers sports betting alongside casino, poker and other games, have given their support to the PDC^s second oldest major.
The BetVictor World Matchplay, first held in 1994, celebrates its 20th birthday this summer, with the nine-day event being staged at the Winter Gardens in Blackpool from July 20-28.
Reigning champion Phil Taylor is bidding to extend his incredible run of success in the tournament, having won 13 World Matchplay titles and equalled his own record run of five straight victories when he defeated James Wade 18-15 in the 2012 final.
Rod Harrington, the 1998 and 1999 champion, is the only other two-time winner, while America^s Larry Butler, Peter Evison, Colin Lloyd and James Wade have also enjoyed success at the Winter Gardens.
Despite his amazing BetVictor World Matchplay success, Taylor is currently the second-favourite to lift this year^s £100,000 title at 3/1 with the sponsors, with new Premier League champion Michael van Gerwen 5/2 to be crowned as the champion in Blackpool.
Former finalist Raymond van Barneveld is 9/1, 2007 champion Wade - also a four-time runner-up - is 10/1, with Simon Whitlock 14/1 and Adrian Lewis 18/1 to take the title.
"These are very exciting times in the world of darts and, after a magnificent World Championship and Premier League, we are delighted to lend our name to the BetVictor World Matchplay from the iconic Winter Gardens Blackpool," said BetVictor Marketing Director Karl Riley.
"It is a venue that invariably brings the best out of Phil Taylor, who has won 13 of the 18 renewals, but Michael Van Gerwen^s brilliant win at The O2 last week means that, for the first time in a very long time, ^The Power^ is not our favourite for a major tournament.
"Those who wish to write off the greatest darts player the world has ever seen do so at their peril as Taylor remains the King of Blackpool; our offer of 3/1 for The Power to continue his love affair with the Winter Gardens might look very big come the last weekend in July!"
PDC Chairman Barry Hearn added: "It is a pleasure to welcome BetVictor as the new title sponsors of the BetVictor World Matchplay.
"This tournament is a favourite for players, fans and television viewers around the world and enjoys a deserved status as one of the most prestigious titles in the sport.
"This year^s BetVictor World Matchplay is already shaping up to be a great tournament, and with the ever-increasing standard of darts I think that last year^s two nine-dart finishes in Blackpool could even be surpassed this summer!"
The three-year sponsorship deal was brokered by independent sponsorship agency, CMSeven, whose Director Charlie Mitchell said: "We^re thrilled to have worked with both BetVictor and the PDC in securing this exciting new partnership for the sport and we look forward to watching it develop over the coming years."
Tickets for the BetVictor World Matchplay are available now by calling the Winter Gardens Box Office on 0844 856 1111 or online through www.blackpoollive.com.
Travel packages are also available through Thomas Cook Sport, and tickets can also be purchased through www.seetickets.com and www.viagogo.co.uk, the official ticket exchange partner of the PDC.