BDO to PDC: Five darts stars who could swap sides
Holly Thackeray | January 6, 2016
BDO betrayal? Five arrowsmiths who could jump ship
The 2016 BDO World Darts Championship is well underway, with some top tungsten talent on show. However, rival organisation the PDC is famous for pinching their best and brightest, so Coral writers got to thinking – who may be next to switch sides?
Interestingly, it is reported that, since Stephen Bunting’s infamous move following his Lakeside victory in 2014, BDO stars must now ink a contract preventing them from joining the PDC for a year should they reach the semi-finals or better. If they breach that, the arrowsmiths apparently forfeit their cash prize, making the jump even more contentious.
In fact, after playing in a BDO World Championship semi-final, only three oche heroes in Raymond van Barneveld (2004), Ted Hankey (2012) and Bunting (2014) as the last have immediately exited.
So, with that in mind, here are our five picks for players the PDC may want to poach with a touring card or two…
Bradford-born Waites is currently one of the BDO’s biggest names and the 2013 World Championship winner is a top 10 seed in this year’s tournament, where he is priced at a fantastic 5/1 with Coral for glory again.
The Yorkshireman has collected almost all of his current organisation’s major crowns, with Zuiderduin Masters and World Masters trophies snatched back in 2011. That leaves just the World Darts Trophy and International Darts League to claim.
Part-time carpenter Waites, 38, has not been shy about dipping his toes in PDC waters, and is famously the only BDO player to have lifted the Grand Slam of Darts, a competition which is open to both sets of stars.
Having already done himself justice against the likes of Phil Taylor and James Wade, would he trade?
“I still like playing for Yorkshire and England. When that comes to an end, you never know, I might have a go in the PDC. If our televised competitions on the BBC and everywhere else come to an end, I might be forced to move,” said the down-to-earth star. Coincidentally, the BBC will axe their BDO darts coverage after the current competition ends…watch this space.
Dazzling with the darts this year has been Latvian talent Razma, who reached the second round of the current World Championship aged just 27.
‘Razmataz’, ranked number six, has plenty of minor victories under his belt and is now making inroads at the majors. Having arrived from a nation which can be considered darting minnows, Razma could well be a name to look out for in the future.
Hitman Harms could be next to follow in a long line of Dutch dartsmen to cross the divide, to try his hand elsewhere after already reaching the semi-finals of most BDO majors.
The 31-year-old has also already flexed his muscles in the Grand Slam, which would smooth any leap. Having seen the recent success of Alan Norris, former electrician Sparky should take a chance and live up to his Bon Jovi walk-on lyrics…’It’s My Life.’
A rank outsider but, Swede Sajwani is just the type of colourful character the PDC craves, for its flashier production values and crowds which hanker for showmen full of surprises.
Reportedly a supermarket manager in ‘real’ life, ‘Chatterbox’ takes to the oche in bright yellow to a Queen soundtrack and, though inconsistent, has the ability to shock seeds, which he did back in 2015 against James Wilson.
Geert de Vos
Brilliant Belgians are currently ten-a-penny in the PDC, but Foxy may fancy himself to stand out as he is currently ranked third in the BDO universe.
De Vos did qualify for the 2015 Grand Slam following his World Darts Trophy win, but was given a baptism of fire as he was dumped out at the group stage. Still, it was a narrow exit he should take confidence from, as he ran pro Robert Thornton close in his opener before later thumping Jonny Clayton.
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