Rafael van der Vaart set for BDO debut at the Denmark Open

Jamie Shaw in Off The Oche 17 Apr 2019
Van der Vaart turns his attention to tungsten (credit:Angelika Warmuth/DPA/PA Images)

Dutch footballing legend Rafael van der Vaart is set to make his competitive darting debut at the Denmark Open next month.

Van der Vaart, 36, announced his retirement from professional football last November and has incredibly turned his attention to darts as he bids to follow in the footsteps of his decorated compatriots Michael van Gerwen and Raymond van Barneveld.

Van der Vaart, a keen darts fan, recently featured in a pro-am tournament in Germany alongside Van Gerwen, with the pair losing out to Max Hopp and actor Jimi Ochsenknecht in the final.

He has received coaching from both MVG and Barney and has now deemed himself ready to try his hand on the BDO circuit for the first time.

The former Real Madrid and Tottenham midfielder, who was capped 109 times for Holland, is among a bumper field of entries for both the Denmark Open and Denmark Masters from May 4-5 in Esbjerg - where he spent the final spell of his football career.

His brother, Fernando van der Vaart, has also signed up for the BDO double-header.

Van der Vaart is not the only Dutch footballing star to take a keen interest in darts, with striker Robin van Persie attending last year's Premier League finals and former Cardiff City forward Lex Immers competing in a number of PDC Challenge Tour events in 2016.


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Rafael van der Vaart set for BDO debut at the Denmark Open

Dutch footballing legend Rafael van der Vaart is set to make his competitive darting debut at the Denmark Open next month.

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