2023 European Championship Preview: Can an Outsider Prevail, or Will a Top Favorite Seize Victory?


2023 European Championship Preview: Can an Outsider Prevail, or Will a Top Favorite Seize Victory?

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From October 26 to 29, the sixteenth edition of the European Championship takes center stage, featuring the top 32 players from the European Tour 2023. The action unfolds once again at the iconic Westfalenhallen in Dortmund, a venue steeped in history, having hosted the event in 2018 and 2022. However, the European Darts Championship has journeyed through various cities over the years, including Frankfurt (2008), Hoofddorp (2009), Dinslaken (2010), Düsseldorf (2011), Mülheim (2012-2014), Hasselt (2015-2017), Göttingen (2019), Oberhausen (2020), and Salzburg (2021).

This prestigious tournament has seen a revolving door of champions. The past eight editions yielded eight different victors. Phil Taylor reigned supreme from 2008 to 2011, but titles shifted to Simon Whitlock (2012) and Adrian Lewis (2013). Then, the era of Michael van Gerwen, “Mighty Mike,” unfolded with his four consecutive titles from 2014 to 2017. The recent years have offered diversity, with James Wade claiming the trophy in 2018, Rob Cross in 2019 and 2021, Peter Wright in 2020, and the biggest upset came in 2022 when Ross Smith captured his first major title by defeating Michael Smith in the final.

Throughout its history, the European Championship has witnessed four players achieving a nine-dart finish: Adrian Lewis, Michael van Gerwen, Kyle Anderson, and Jose de Sousa accomplished this remarkable feat in the 2011, 2014, 2017, and 2020 editions, respectively. Could this foreshadow another perfect lay during the 2023 European Darts Championship in Dortmund?

In the eyes of bookmakers, Michael van Gerwen narrowly claims the top favorite position. The four-time European Championship winner hasn’t had the best of luck in recent years, reaching the final in 2021 but facing early exits in 2018, 2019, 2020, and 2022. Following closely are Gerwyn Price and Luke Humphries, fresh from their showdown in the World Grand Prix final, which saw Humphries securing his first major title.

Dave Chisnall carries the top seed at the European Darts Championship, having won three Euro Tour tournaments this year. However, his journey won’t be easy, with a first-round match against Chris Dobey and a quarter featuring the likes of Stephen Bunting, Michael Smith, and Peter Wright. An intense battle is expected in this quarter.

For those eager to watch the European Darts Championship, viewers in the UK can tune in to ITV, while other territories will have their coverage through platforms like Viaplay in the Netherlands, DAZN in Germany, and PDCTV in regions without TV broadcasts.

The action begins with the first round on Thursday at 5:45 pm and continues until 10 pm on ITV4. Due to football coverage, it shifts to ITV3 for Friday and Saturday’s evening sessions, starting slightly later at 6 pm. The afternoon session returns to ITV4 with a 12 pm start time.

A total prize money pool of £500,000 awaits participants, with all 32 players guaranteed a starting premium of £6,000. Success in the first round boosts earnings to £10,000, with the ultimate prize being £120,000 for the European Darts Championship winner. It promises to be a thrilling showcase of darting excellence in Dortmund.



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