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Article: Gian van Veen - Well Done...Keep It Going!

Gian van Veen - Well Done...Keep It Going!

Michael van Gerwen is not the only Dutch dart player featuring in the top 8 seasonal averages on the PDC Pro Tour. The new Dutch darts sensation on the block is Gian van Veen.

Neither is it Dirk van Duivenbode – a winner of three ProTour titles in 2023 - former UK Open champion Danny Noppert, or five-time World Champion Raymond van Barneveld.

Instead, the leading Dutchman in terms of ProTour performance over the last six months has been 21-year-old newcomer Gian van Veen, who has emerged as one of the sport’s most exciting talents.

The fresh-faced youngster claimed Development Tour and Challenge Tour success last year, before announcing his arrival with a remarkable run to a ProTour final last November, despite not then holding a PDC Tour Card.

Van Veen rectified that by winning through European Qualifying School in January, and he’s made a serious impression since joining the professional ranks.

He reached the quarter-finals in three of the year’s first eight Players Championship events, and more recently he progressed to his maiden European Tour quarter-final in Sindelfingen.

Van Veen dumped out his fellow countryman Noppert and World Youth Champion Josh Rock to reach the last eight at the Glaspalast, where he averaged 106 in an astonishing contest against Luke Humphries.

“It’s unbelievable,” admitted Van Veen, speaking on the Darts Show Podcast.

“It is happening quite fast at the moment, the last couple of months have been unreal.

“I’m just really enjoying it and who knows what is next?”

Van Veen is currently balancing his darting commitments with the final year of his aviation studies, and he plans to become a full-time professional once he’s completed his education.

Less than 18 months ago, his long-term future in the sport was cast into serious doubt due to his struggles with dartitis, although incredibly, the affliction appeared to have a positive influence on his game.

“Even with dartitis I started playing better each month. I was averaging 90-95,” revealed the Poederoijen-born thrower.

“I played on the ProTour with dartitis, I won a Challenge Tour and Development Tour title with dartitis.

“I thought at first it was going to destroy my game, but the results were still there and my game was getting better.

“Luckily I managed to battle through it and I’ve got rid of it now. Maybe it helped my career.

“I don’t have a golden tip or anything, I don’t know how I got rid of it. It’s all about confidence and belief and when you win games, it’s easy to gain confidence.”

Van Veen’s game has gone from strength-to-strength since his emergence last year, and he’s added a further three Development Tour titles to his tally in 2023.

The 21-year-old also landed a nine-darter in a European Tour qualifier back in April, although he’s been left frustrated by his recent results on the ProTour.

Van Veen has suffered a fate similar to Chris Dobey in this year’s Premier League - running into inspired performances on a regular basis.

The Dutch prospect has averaged 100, 103, 103 and 102 in his last four defeats in Players Championship events, winning just three matches during this period.

“In the last couple of months and weeks I played well, but I kept losing,” he continued.

“My numbers are up there, but in the last four ProTours I have lost with a 100+ average. I keep telling myself that if I keep playing like this, the results will come.

“Sometimes it is tough, but I will keep digging in, and if I play like I have been, I believe a title is in reach.

“I just want to make the World Championship and Players Championship Finals this year. I’m looking good on the ProTour Order of Merit and the Development Tour Order of Merit for the World Championship.

“I really want to make that this year, and the top 64 at the end of next year is my target, then who knows what happens?”

Listen to the full exclusive interview with Gian in the latest edition of The Darts Show Podcast - available on Spotify and Apple Podcasts.

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