Worthington's Champion of Champions Returns to Cardiff
2023 sees the return of the Red Dragon Champion of Champions, on the back of a successful outing last year after the competition returned from a 3-year absence due to the COVID 19 Pandemic. Welsh international Alec Small became the latest player to win the competition after he beat Scott Bayliss 2-0 in last year’s Final at the Depot in Cardiff.
The winner this year will receive £10,000 as well as a place on the MODUS Super Series, where £5,000 is up for grabs each week in Portsmouth. MODUS SUPER SERIES will offer a full week’s place worth a minimum £1250 to the winning player, with the opportunity to appear on TV and the chance to win a further £25,000 at Champions Week.
For the first time in the Champion of Champions we will also be holding a Pairs Event, where 8 pairs will all battle it out for a winner’s prize of £2,000.
2022 saw a record-breaking year for the Champion of Champions, with 2075 players registered across the UK, and venues taking part in the Republic of Ireland and Germany. Overall a total of 4970 players participated last year including professionals who played within the Professional Darts Corporation, such as Martin Lukeman and Connor Scutt.
The race has already begun in 2023 as players look to confirm their spots at the Depot in Cardiff for Finals Day on the 26th of August, with venues chosen across Wales, England, and Scotland.
The competition will once again be sponsored by Worthington’s with each player last year receiving a unique player only tournament shirt. This will continue in 2023 with our main sponsors providing a tournament shirt once more, but this time with a Brand-New Design!
For the likes of Red Dragon player Chas Barstow, Martyn Turner, Sion Thomas and Vince Short, they have already secured their places at Final’s Day. 44-year-old Barstow came through victorious at selected venue Eastleigh Working Men’s Club, putting himself in contention to become only the third English winner of the event after Paul Hogan and Ryan Searle.
The Champion of Champions grew on social media, with Facebook posts reaching 1,244,400 and Tweet viewing figures hitting 202,000 people.
Wales again include the most attended qualifying competitions in relation to selected venues for Finals Day, with popular venues including the Trehafod & District Social Club which so far has a total of 47 entrants for the 21st of July.
The Rhymney Brewery Club broke the record for the highest turnout for a qualifier in 2023, with Gethyn Bennett coming through victorious from a 56-player field!
The Penydarren Social Club held its qualifying competition a week ago with a total of 45 entrants in Merthyr, Wales. 2022 WDF Irish Classic Men Semi Finalist Lee Williams secured his place at the Depot, with victory at the venue on the 12th of June.
Many more qualifying competitions are still to play before we know our final 256 player field for Final’s Day, with events scheduled for the end of June and July.
There are also events fast approaching in England as the Victory Pub in Plymouth plays its qualifier on Monday with 26 players so far registered.
By Harry Masterson