Grand Slam of Darts

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Grand Slam of Darts
Grandslamdarts.jpg
Tournament information
Venue Civic Hall
Location Wolverhampton
Country England
Established 2007
Organisation(s) PDC
BDO
Format Legs
Prize fund £400,000 (2009)
Month(s) Played November
Current champion(s)
England Phil Taylor

The Grand Slam of Darts is a darts tournament organised by the Professional Darts Corporation and is known as the Singha Beer Grand Slam of Darts for sponsorship purposes. The PDC also invites the best performing players from its rival, the British Darts Organisation. There have been two previous head-to-head matches between the champions of the two organisation and a few overseas tournaments have also featured BDO v PDC clashes, but this tournament is the first of its kind to be held in the United Kingdom.

The tournament has been staged each November at the Wolverhampton Civic since it began in 2007. Phil Taylor won the first three finals against Andy Hamilton in 2007, Terry Jenkins in 2008 and Scott Waites in 2009. Taylor did not reach the final in 2010, losing to Steve Beaton in the quarter-finals.[1] Scott Waites won that year, beating James Wade 16–12 in the final having trailed 8–0. Taylor reclaimed the title in 2011, defeating Gary Anderson 16-4. Raymond van Barneveld defeated Michael van Gerwen 16-14 in the 2012 final, but Taylor regained the trophy in 2013.

Results[edit]

[2]

Year Champion (average in final) Legs Runner-Up (average in final) Sponsor Prize Fund Champion Runner-up
2007 England Phil Taylor (101.75) 18–11 England Andy Hamilton (100.97) PartyBets.com £300,000 £80,000 £35,000
2008 England Phil Taylor (106.25) 18–9 England Terry Jenkins (100.92) PartyPoker.com £356,000 £100,000 £40,000
2009 England Phil Taylor (103.94) 16–2 England Scott Waites (94.16) £400,000 £100,000 £50,000
2010 England Scott Waites (99.86) 16–12 England James Wade (92.79) Daily Mirror £400,000 £100,000 £50,000
2011 England Phil Taylor (109.04) 16–4 Scotland Gary Anderson (98.92) William Hill £400,000 £100,000 £50,000
2012 Netherlands Raymond van Barneveld (95.79) 16–14 Netherlands Michael van Gerwen (98.55) £400,000 £100,000 £50,000
2013 England Phil Taylor (98.14) 16–6 Scotland Robert Thornton (97.02) £400,000 £100,000 £50,000
2014 England Phil Taylor (102.45) 16–13 England Dave Chisnall (98.02) Singha Beer £400,000 £100,000 £50,000

Previous BDO v PDC tournaments[edit]

There have been previous tournaments in which players from both the PDC and BDO have competed. Between 1998 and 2001 several BDO players competed in the World Matchplay – this was as a result of a 1997 Tomlin Order which allowed freedom of players to enter more events. This was later restricted when eligibility rules allowed only Professional Dart Players Association members to compete in the tournament.

The 2005 Masters of Darts was the first tournament to feature the top players from each organisation, and in 2006 and 2007 the Dutch organisers of the International Darts League and World Darts Trophy invited some PDC players to compete alongside BDO players.

Perennial participants[edit]

As the Grand Slam is an invitational tournament for players who have reached major finals and semi-finals, or been the top of their countries' respective rankings, there is a certain degree of prestige attached to qualifying for the tournament, and even more for entrants who qualify multiple times. Six players have appeared in all eight tournaments so far.

Television coverage[edit]

ITV screened the first four Grand Slam of Darts, which ended their 19 year absence from regular darts coverage (although they did show a one-off Clash of Champions match between Phil Taylor and Raymond van Barneveld in 1999).[3] The inaugural event saw selected first round games, the semi-finals, and the final all screened live on ITV1 and the rest of the tournament live on ITV4 but the live coverage was moved entirely to ITV4 in subsequent years, with highlights packages being the only coverage of the event on ITV1.

The tournament proved popular on ITV4, with the 2009 event achieving nine out of the top ten places in the channel's output for that week. Viewing figures ranged from 208,000 to 435,000 with the final itself watched by 454,000.[4] ITV extended their contract with the PDC to show the tournament until at least 2010.[5]

The presenting team consisted of lead presenter Matt Smith, and analysts Alan Warriner-Little and Chris Mason (who replaced Steve Beaton in 2008). The commentating team included Stuart Pyke, who also commentates on darts for Sky Sports, boxing commentator John Rawling, and Peter Drury. Janie Omorogbe provided reporting duties and player interviews.

On 25 January 2011, it was announced that Sky Sports would broadcast the event until 2018.[6][7]

Sponsorship[edit]

On 23 September 2014 the PDC announced a three-year partnership with Singha Beer as the new title sponsors of the Grand Slam of darts starting with the 2014 event.[8]

Jaturon Zane Himathongkom, International Sports Marketing Director at Singha Beer, said: "We are delighted to be a title sponsor for the Singha Beer Grand Slam of Darts and also an Official Beer partner of the PDC during 2014-2016. This is a fantastic event and also a splendid opportunity for us to be involved. I hope everyone will enjoy Singha Beer during the event." PDC Chairman Barry Hearn said: "It gives me great pleasure to welcome Singha Beer into the PDC family as our new sponsors for the SINGHA Beer Grand Slam of Darts and an Official Partner for the next three years. Their brand is recognised worldwide as a beer of leading quality, and with this sponsorship they'll be associated with the leading players in world darts, including a host of World Champions and other major tournament winners."

Previous sponsors were William Hill (2011–13) PartyBets.com (2007) and PartyPoker.com (2008–09), websites operated by Bwin.Party Digital Entertainment, and the Daily Mirror newspaper (2010).

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Taylor beaten by Beaton". Sky Sports (British Sky Broadcasting). 20 November 2010. Retrieved 21 November 2010. 
  2. ^ "Grand Slam Of Darts Winners". Darts Database. Retrieved 5 November 2014. 
  3. ^ ITV agree to cover Grand Slam This is London
  4. ^ Weekly Top 10 Programmes Broadcasters' Audience Research Board
  5. ^ ITV signs deal with PDC for three more years ITV
  6. ^ Sky Sports Snap Up Grand Slam PDC
  7. ^ "Sky Sports and PDC agree new five-year deal". Sky Sports. Retrieved 5 November 2014. 
  8. ^ "SINGHA Beer Sponsor Grand Slam". PDC. Retrieved 5 November 2014. 

External links[edit]