Des Jacklin threatens legal action against John O’Shea over World Masters trophy

Former BDO Chairman Des Jacklin has threatened to take legal action against John O’Shea over the return of the World Masters trophy.

Ireland’s O’Shea claimed the prestigious title as an unseeded outsider at The Circus Tavern 12 months ago.

The 2019 tournament, which was held in consecutive years since 1974, transpired to be the last World Masters organised by the BDO after the collapse of the organisation last month.

Despite BDO Enterprises LTD having been placed into liquidation and the UKDA having acquired all county teams, Jacklin has refused to give up in his quest to have the World Masters trophy returned.

He penned a direct letter to O’Shea which was leaked on social media on Tuesday, stating that O’Shea had signed a contract for the return of the trophy and that he had “several screenshots” of O’Shea’s social media posts in which he vowed to keep the trophy.

Jacklin went on to claim he had “taken the liberty of of filing in the documents for legal court action” and would file the claim to the courts at 9am on Friday October 30 unless the trophy was returned in the meantime.

O’Shea remains adamant he plans to keep the trophy until it can be returned to a “fully functional organisation”.

The 45-year-old posted on Facebook: “A year on after winning the most prestigious event in world darts, a time to look back over the memories through this horrible time with Covid-19.

“What a week in my life and my family’s life what it meant to me even now.

“But unfortunately has been tarnished from emails and threats of court proceedings from none other than …yep you guess it.

“A tournament surrounded by glory and loved by the British Darting community for as long as it’s been played for since 1974.

“When I won the amount of that community in the UK that shared that moment with me and everyone here in Ireland.

“Not only has the BDO folded and all players shift their darting careers elsewhere but yet again here we are dragging what once was a great organisation through the gutter as if it could be dragged anymore.

“As an Irishman winning what has been dominated by the greatest Dart players that ever walked the face of this planet, I would have liked to defend the World Masters or at least given the opportunity to hold on to the trophy till such time as it be played for again.

“But yesterday had an email and today I responded and the results were everything I expected to be honest.

“I let the Darting world decide if I am wrong and see the judge who will decide the home of the World Masters trophy till she graces another stage.

“I am well aware the trophy is not mine to keep but why put it in storage and never seen again at least its appreciated where it is now and well looked after and insured.”

O’Shea picked up £18,000 for his World Masters triumph after a tournament that was thrown into turmoil with a re-draw in the early rounds and a sparse crowd throughout the week.

The World Darts Federation (WDF) is set to launch its own World Masters and World Championship in 2021.

The BDO’s official website was taken offline earlier this month but has since re-emerged.