DUO SET FOR WORLD SERIES DEBUTS IN MAY AS VAN GERWEN DEFENDS DUBAI DUTY FREE DARTS MASTERS TITLE
Following the success of last year^s inaugural Dubai Duty Free Darts Masters, which was won by van Gerwen at the Dubai Duty Free Tennis Stadium, the tournament will return this year on May 29 & 30 for a two-day, eight-player event.
The top six players in the PDC Order of Merit at the start of 2014 - Michael van Gerwen, Phil Taylor, Simon Whitlock, Adrian Lewis, Dave Chisnall and James Wade - are automatic selections to compete in this year^s tournament.
They are joined by Wildcards Peter Wright, the 2014 World Championship runner-up, and five-time World Champion Raymond van Barneveld, who won through to last year^s final in Dubai before losing to his compatriot van Gerwen.
Wright is joined in making his World Series debut by world number five Chisnall, the 2013 World Grand Prix finalist, with the other six players having competed in either Dubai or Sydney during last year.
"I am very much looking forward to coming back to Dubai in May to defend the Dubai Duty Free Darts Masters," said van Gerwen. "It was such an honour to play for the first time in Dubai last year and bring darts to a new part of the world.
"I can^t wait to return with the other players and be able to compete for such a great title. The crowd and atmosphere was fantastic last year in the Dubai Duty Free Tennis Stadium, and I look forward to trying to retain the title."
Dubai Duty Free, who signed an exclusive partnership agreement for the inaugural Dubai Duty Free Darts Masters, have signed on for a further two years.
Having seen the success of bringing PDC darts to the region, Qantas and JW Marriot have come on-board the Dubai Duty Free Darts Masters as Official Partners, with Sixt Car hire continuing their partnership for the second year.
Darts fans in Dubai and the region will not only be able to see the best players in the world live on stage but also on television. The event will be broadcast live through our production partners Dubai Sports TV and also through OSN.
7 Days, Time Out and Radio 2 have also signed on as Official Media Partners of the Dubai Duty Free Darts Masters, which is supported by the Dubai Sports Council and Dubai Calendar.
"The Dubai Duty Free Darts Masters has been a very positive development in augmenting the exposure of darts in both Dubai and across the Middle East," said PDC Chief Executive Matthew Porter.
"Darts fans in Dubai will now get to see the best players in darts live both in the stadium and on television. With players from 21 countries having competed recently in the World Darts Championship, we at the PDC see the Dubai Duty Free Darts Masters as an important stepping-stone in the sport^s worldwide growth."
Tickets for the Dubai Duty Free Darts Masters are now on sale and will be sold at AED250 for general one-day tickets, with season tickets to cover both days sold at AED399.
VIP Tickets (front two rows) will be sold as season tickets at AED550. Tickets will be sold through Irish Village (+971 (0)4 239 5000) and Time Out Tickets (www.timeouttickets.com).
Corporate Hospitality tables, which include all Food and Beverages, are sold at AED11,995 for a table of 10 per night or AED19,995 for a table of ten for both days. These will also be sold through The Irish Village on +971 (0)4 239 5000 or Time Out Tickets (www.timeouttickets.com).
Holiday Packages to Dubai, which include flight, hotel and tickets to the Dubai Duty Free Darts Masters, will be available in due course.
2014 Dubai Duty Free Darts Masters Competitors
Michael van Gerwen - Reigning World Champion & 2013 Dubai Duty Free Darts Masters champion
Phil Taylor - 16-time World Champion
Simon Whitlock - 2012 European Champion
Adrian Lewis - two-time World Champion
Dave Chisnall - 2013 World Grand Prix finalist
James Wade - Seven-time major champion
Peter Wright - 2014 World Championship finalist
Raymond van Barneveld - five-time World Champion
Thursday May 29
Friday May 30
Semi-Finals & Final
The PDC expect to announce details of further World Series of Darts events shortly, with the competitors for other events being staged later in 2014 being the top six players from the PDC Order of Merit following March^s Coral UK Open Televised Finals, plus two Wildcards.