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Des Jacklin voted back onto the BDO Board

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Des Jacklin returns as BDO Chairman a month after resigning

Jamie Shaw in BDO Darts News 21 Apr 2020
Jacklin first became BDO Chairman in 2018 (credit: British Darts Organisation)

Des Jacklin has completed a remarkable U-turn to reclaim the position of BDO Chairman just over a month after tendering his resignation.

On Monday, it was revealed Jacklin had been voted back onto the BDO Board of Directors after receiving the backing of 66 per cent of the counties.

It was understood that Jacklin, who resigned on March 17, would not be returning as chairman and would oversee finances before a final decision is made at the next AGM.

However, 24 hours later, he has been confirmed as BDO Chairman once again after receiving a unanimous vote from the new Board of Directors.

Jacklin confirmed the re-appointment in a letter to the counties on Tuesday afternoon, admitting: “The past four weeks has given me the time to reflect on the events of the past 18 months and re-evaluate my position, thoughts and vision required to take the company forward.

“I also feel I’ve had chance to re-charge my batteries, so to speak.”

The new Board of Directors is made up of Jacklin as BDO Chairman, Peter Gilchrist as Vice Chairman, Bob Foster as Commercial Director, Graham Manning as Players Director and Stephen Gittus as Financial Director.

Jacklin once again slammed the use of social media to discredit the organisation, insisting the BDO “is treated differently to any other company on the planet” and revealed new rules will be put in place regarding the use of social media.

He added: “We will be appointing a committee whose purpose is to monitor social media and more importantly where the BDO, its directors, county officials and players fit in.

“We will be taking a very hard stance on what is and isn’t acceptable behaviour and as soon as this is in place, all counties will be expected to adopt our new ruling.

“As soon as this is legally adopted, there will be a consequence to your actions both in the way of fines and exclusion.”

Jacklin ended the letter by thanking those that had given him the “kick in the rear” he needed to accept the position and vowed: “together we will win.”

The BDO is continuing to chase refunds from the Sol Principe hotel, the host venue of the Torremolinos Festival of Darts, which was cancelled last month due to the Covid-19 outbreak.

Jacklin was at the helm during the BDO’s biggest crisis period to date which saw the organisation rack up a staggering £468,000 loss during the last financial year.

The decision to take the World Championship away from Lakeside resulted in a prize fund slashed by almost 60 per cent due to lack of sponsorship and poor ticket sales, with men’s champion Wayne Warren receiving just £23,000 – the lowest winner’s cheque since 1989.

The World Masters descended into chaos, with re-draws at the qualifiers and a minimal crowd turnout at the Circus Tavern, while the BDO’s entire team of officials resigned and the WDF ceased to recognise BDO events.

Jacklin’s official resignation letter was followed by a remarkable statement on Facebook in which he pulled no punches on his predecessors, denied accusations of fixing draws and explained the reasoning behind the move to The O2.

The previous BDO board stated at the foot of the most recent financial report that it ‘recognises the risks associated with continuing operations’ but is continuing to work at arranging sponsorship deals and TV coverage for its scheduled tournaments.