Kim Huybrechts suffers horror injury after being attacked at Belgian Cup final

Kim Huybrechts has been left requiring surgery on his right shoulder after being attacked at the Belgian Cup final on Thursday.

Huybrechts was in Brussels ahead of the match between Antwerp – the club he supports – and Union Saint-Gilloise at the King Baudouin Stadium.

It is understood he and a friend were attacked by a group of hooligans when leaving the stadium and preparing to board a coach following his side’s 1-0 defeat.

Reports in Belgium claim that Huybrechts was knocked to the ground after being hit with a motorcycle helmet and repeatedly kicked and punched.

The 38-year-old was taken to hospital, where X-rays revealed he had suffered a double fracture of the collarbone in his throwing arm.

The world number 34 is set to undergo surgery and is likely to be out of action for a number of months, meaning he would miss the World Cup of Darts in June.

His wife, Dana Verhaegen, posted on Facebook: ‘As many have already heard, things went seriously wrong today during the cup final.

‘In a nutshell: Match end, Antwerp supporters walking along a path through a park in a crowd towards the buses. The line gets stuck due to the grim atmosphere.

‘Kim and Kevin want to pass the line through an opening in the fence to get to the buses faster and are attacked from behind. Verdict: while Kim lay on the ground and took punches, he suffered a double fracture of the collarbone, unfortunately in his right arm.’

Huybrechts had competed in the double-header of Players Championship events in Hildesheim earlier this week and was gearing up for his 13th consecutive appearance in the Belgian World Cup of Darts team next month.

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Kim Huybrechts issues response to disciplinary action over Mike De Decker incident

Kim Huybrechts admits “something snapped in me” following his Belgian bust-up with Mike De Decker, and insists he is “not a hateful person”.

Huybrechts has been fined £1,500 and issued with a formal warning for threatening behaviour towards his compatriot De Decker.

The incident took place following a Players Championship event in Barnsley last November and saw Huybrechts allegedly slap De Decker across the face as the pair waited for transportation to the airport.

A leaked video of the incident surfaced on Tuesday, with an enraged Huybrechts seen to be being restrained and shouting: “I will destroy you” towards De Decker.

Huybrechts has issued his response to VTM News, admitting: “The video in question cannot be justified, it went black before my eyes.”

The 38-year-old went on to outline his version of events and explain the series of events leading up to the incident.

He remarked: “It is never nice to be reprimanded and punished for such matters, but there are two sides to every story.

“First and foremost, I would like to say that my response was wrong at all times. There have been a few words, both between Dimitri [van den Bergh] and me and Mike [De Decker] and me. This has been going on for some time, especially in the private sphere.

“In the case with Mike, my wife had posted online saying she was disappointed that Mike had said things behind my back on tour that had come to my attention. I didn’t talk to him about it at the time, because I just wanted to avoid confrontation.

“Someone from Mike’s family then called my wife, making a number of threats, including towards my children.

“As a father you always want to protect your family, especially when you hear things like that. Then something snaps in me. I was never allowed to react like that, and I was rightly reprimanded for that.

“But when it comes to my family, I’m quite sensitive. You should never have physical contact with someone when you are in an argument.”

Huybrechts says he has since buried the hatchet with De Decker and is keen to move on from the incident.

He added: “I recently played a final against Mike at a tournament. After the match I had decided to apologize, win or lose. Mike accepted this, but unfortunately this is not mentioned in the articles.

“Anyway, the people who need to know are aware, and that’s what counts. The ruling of the disciplinary committee dates from two weeks ago, and the case with Mike dates back to November.

“For me it had subsided a bit, but with the media storm everything is coming back to the surface. Not nice, not even for my family who have received certain messages on social media. I hope it settles down soon.

“We sometimes meet each other during competitions. That will sometimes lead to competitive matches. Sporty revenge. That’s just the way it goes in the sports world, you can’t agree with everyone. And unfortunately it is now the Belgians who are arguing among themselves.

“What could be the adequate solution for this? We’ll have to look at that in the future. I’m not a hateful person. For now, it’s better that we do our own thing and focus on our own careers.

“In 2024, I mainly want to focus on myself and spend as little time as possible on this, even though this is becoming difficult now.”

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Kim Huybrechts fined for aggressive and threatening behaviour towards Belgian compatriot

Kim Huybrechts has been fined £1,500 and issued with a formal warning for threatening behaviour toward Belgian compatriot Mike De Decker.

The sanction relates to incidents involving his fellow countrymen De Decker and Dimitri van den Bergh – who both filed complaints over Huybrechts’ behaviour.

Van den Bergh initially filed a complaint in the lead up to the World Cup of Darts last June, in which the two team-mates famously did not see eye-to-eye during the early stages.

According to reports by Het Nieuwsblad, Huybrechts had remarked to De Decker: “Mike, who knows, you might still throw in the World Cup this year? You never know when someone falls down the stairs.”

A separate incident occurred following a Players Championship event in Barnsley last November which saw Huybrechts allegedly strike De Decker across the face.

As the pair waited for transportation back to the airport, Huybrechts confronted De Decker over a family Facebook feud, exclaiming: “I will destroy you!

“I swear, this has been on my mind for a long time. You are the first on my list. And your mother too.”

A video has since emerged of the incident, with Huybrechts seen to be being restrained whilst shouting at De Decker.

The DRA disciplinary committee concluded that Huybrechts had behaved ‘aggressively and inappropriately’ and has been fined £1,500, as well as receiving a formal warning, meaning he could face suspension should any further incidents occur.

The 38-year-old ended an eight-year wait for a PDC ranking title last season and reached the semi-finals of the World Cup of Darts alongside Van den Bergh despite their well documented fall-out.

 

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Van den Bergh and Huybrechts “committed” to Belgium’s World Cup of Darts bid despite ongoing feud

Dimitri Van den Bergh and Kim Huybrechts insist they are “fully committed” to Belgium’s bid to land a maiden World Cup of Darts title, despite their ongoing feud.

The pair are representing their nation at the team event for a sixth successive year, but there was obvious tension during their commanding 4-0 victory over Finland on Thursday.

Indeed, there was no handshake between the players, while they barely looked at each other throughout the contest.

Huybrechts, who previously appeared at the tournament alongside brother Ronny, later admitted: “For me, it is the first time playing a doubles tournament with someone you don’t get along with.”

While Van den Bergh declined to comment on the situation, fellow professional Vincent van der Voort claimed while appearing as a pundit on Viaplay that the pair were not on speaking terms due to the former World Matchplay finalist filing a complaint against his compatriot to the PDC.

The Belgian duo released a joint-statement on Friday, in which they were adamant the issues would not impede their quest for glory.

“Following last night’s win at the My Diesel Claim World Cup of Darts, we have sat down to discuss our recent differences,” the statement read.

“Whilst some issues remain to be resolved in the fullness of time, we are both fully committed to doing our best as a team to win the World Cup of Darts for Belgium, and to represent ourselves, our families and our country in the best light.

“That begins with tonight’s game against China, and our focus is now on preparing for that match as a team.”

Following Finland’s 4-0 rout of China earlier in the day, Belgium require only a single leg against the latter to progress to the second round as Group A winners.

Although, they will not be joined by Jose de Sousa’s Portugal, who crashed out following a humbling 4-1 defeat by a clinical Lithuania – their second in as many games.

Meanwhile, Northern Ireland’s Brendan Dolan and Daryl Gurney kept their qualifications hopes alive with a 4-0 victory over Ukraine, as did Mensur Suljovic’s Austria by defeating USA 4-2.

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Kim Huybrechts ends eight-year PDC title drought at Players Championship Three

Kim Huybrechts ended an eight-year wait for a PDC title by winning Players Championship Three in Barnsley on Saturday with an 8-1 rout of Gabriel Clemens in the final.

The Belgian ace produced a series of dominant displays to scoop the £12,000 top prize at the Barnsley Metrodome and clinch his first PDC title since 2015.

Huybrechts began the day in sensational style, averaging 112 in thrashing Devon Petersen 6-1 in the opening round.

He then saw off last Saturday’s semi-finalist Dylan Slevin 6-4 and posted a 102 average to overcome Premier League star Nathan Aspinall, before easing past German youngster Ricardo Pietreczko 6-2 to reach the Quarter-Finals.

The 37-year-old then defied a valiant fightback from Josh Rock to secure his spot in the Semi-Finals, producing a 13-dart hold in a last-leg decider after Rock came roaring back from 5-1 down to draw level.

This set up a show-down against his old adversary Gerwyn Price, but ‘The Hurricane’ ran out a convincing 7-3 winner after reeling off the last four legs without reply.

Clemens suffered an 8-0 whitewash defeat at the hands of Dirk van Duijvenbode in a ProTour final 12 months ago, and he looked poised to suffer the same fate barring a late consolation.

Huybrechts drew first blood in the final with a 78 checkout before punishing Clemens’ wastefulness on the doubles to race into a 5-0 lead.

The Antwerp ace then converted 70 and 117 finishes in consecutive legs to move to the brink of victory at 7-0, only for Clemens to open his account in leg eight with a 103 checkout.

However, that only provided Clemens with a temporary reprieve as Huybrechts sealed the deal on double eight to return to the winner’s circle.

“This means the world to me. I’m so happy,” reflected Huybrechts, celebrating his fifth PDC title.

“I’ve been working really hard since the World Championship. I lost two games last weekend with a 103 and 98 average and I was thinking this can’t happen all the time, but the level is so high these days.

“When I won my last title, I was on the up. My name was always there and now I wasn’t even in the conversation, so this win means everything.

“I want to be back in that top 16. I want to be qualified for everything. I want to be up there again in the top ten of the world.

“That is my goal and some people will say I won’t reach it, but you have to set goals in your life, and I believe in my own ability.”

Clemens, appearing in his seventh PDC final, was unable to land an elusive first ranking title, but continued his strong start to 2023 to secure the £8,000 runner-up prize.

The World Championship semi-finalist cruised past Jules van Dongen in his opener and followed up with wins over Jose Justicia, Kevin Doets and European Champion Ross Smith.

Clemens continued his progress with a Quarter-Final victory over Latvia’s Madars Razma, before reeling off four consecutive legs from 4-3 down to defeat Canada’s Matt Campbell.

Campbell claimed the scalps of Dutch trio Vincent van der Voort, Niels Zonneveld and Gian van Veen in reaching the Semi-Finals, while also overcoming Bradley Brooks and Mike De Decker.

Price, meanwhile, marked his first ProTour appearance of 2023 with a strong showing in Barnsley, edging out James Hurrell 6-5 with a 104 average in his performance of the day.

The Welshman also saw off Callum Goffin, Scott Williams, Richard Veenstra and Andrew Gilding to reach the Semi-Finals.

Remarkably, there were eight different nationalities represented in Saturday’s Quarter-Finals, with Gilding, Razma and Van Veen succumbing in the Last Eight alongside World Youth Champion Rock.

This weekend’s ProTour action continues on Sunday with Players Championship 4 as 128 players return to action at the Barnsley Metrodome.

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Players Championship Three Results

Saturday February 18

First Round
Luke Humphries 6-1 Rusty-Jake Rodriguez
Brian Raman 6-4 Ronny Huybrechts
Jamie Hughes 6-1 Jimmy Hendriks
Robert Owen 6-1 George Killington
Andrew Gilding 6-3 Chris Landman
Luke Woodhouse 6 -5 Thibault Tricole
Ryan Joyce 6-2 Stephen Bunting
Adam Gawlas 6-5 Mickey Mansell
Gerwyn Price 6-2 Callum Goffin
James Hurrell 6-5 Ian White
Rowby-John Rodriguez 6-3 Graham Usher
Scott Williams 6-1 Nick Fullwell
Ryan Searle 6-3 Florian Hempel
Jermaine Wattimena 6-0 Boris Krcmar
Richard Veenstra 6-5 Adrian Lewis
Andy Boulton 6-3 Owen Roelofs
Nathan Aspinall 6-3 Cameron Menzies
Krzysztof Kciuk 6-4 Damian Mol
Kim Huybrechts 6-1 Devon Petersen
Dylan Slevin 6-5 Graham Hall
Martin Schindler 6-1 Ryan Meikle
Ricardo Pietreczko 6-3 Lee Evans
Chris Dobey 6-1 Keane Barry
Tony Martinez 6-4 Jacques Labre
Dave Chisnall 6-5 Mensur Suljovic
Steve Lennon 6-4 Raymond van Barneveld
Daryl Gurney 6-3 Arron Monk
Adam Warner 6-5 Danny Jansen
Josh Rock 6-4 Gary Anderson
John O’Shea 6-4 Cameron Crabtree
Krzysztof Ratajski 6-4 Richie Burnett
Robbie Knops 6-4 Alan Soutar
Ross Smith 6-3 Damon Heta
Ross Montgomery 6-3 Steve Beaton
Jim Williams 6-1 Adam Smith-Neale
Pascal Rupprecht 6-3 Darren Webster
Jose De Sousa 6-1 James Wilson
Kevin Doets 6-1 Geert Nentjes
Gabriel Clemens 6-1 Jules van Dongen
Jose Justicia 6-5 Nick Kenny
Danny Noppert 6-2 Josh Payne
Ted Evetts 6-4 Danny van Trijp
Jeffrey De Zwaan 6-3 Brendan Dolan
Jeff Smith 6-4 Joe Murnan
Joe Cullen 6-2 Shaun Wilkinson
Scott Waites 6-2 William O’Connor
Madars Razma 6-2 Kevin Burness
Radek Szaganski 6-2 Darius Labanauskas
Rob Cross 6-5 Karel Sedlacek
Lewy Williams 6-5 Christian Kist
Simon Whitlock 6-2 Nathan Rafferty
Niels Zonneveld 6-5 Maik Kuivenhoven
Bradley Brooks 6-4 Dimitri Van den Bergh
Matt Campbell 6-4 Vincent van der Voort
Mike De Decker 6-4 James Wade
Stephen Burton 6-5 Martijn Kleermaker
Connor Scutt 6-4 Dirk van Duijvenbode
Jeffrey Sparidaans 6-2 Jamie Clark
Callan Rydz 6-2 Mervyn King
Gian van Veen 6-2 Ricky Evans
Jonny Clayton 6-1 Keegan Brown
Mario Vandenbogaerde 6-4 Luc Peters
Martin Lukeman 6-3 Ritchie Edhouse
Daniel Klose 6-3 Jurjen van der Velde

Second Round
Luke Humphries 6-1 Brian Raman
Jamie Hughes 6-3 Robert Owen
Andrew Gilding 6-3 Luke Woodhouse
Adam Gawlas 6-0 Ryan Joyce
Gerwyn Price 6-5 James Hurrell
Scott Williams 6-3 Rowby-John Rodriguez
Jermaine Wattimena 6-5 Ryan Searle
Richard Veenstra 6-2 Andy Boulton
Nathan Aspinall 6-0 Krzysztof Kciuk
Kim Huybrechts 6-4 Dylan Slevin
Ricardo Pietreczko 6-4 Martin Schindler
Chris Dobey 6-4 Tony Martinez
Steve Lennon 6-2 Dave Chisnall
Adam Warner 6-5 Daryl Gurney
Josh Rock 6-3 John O’Shea
Krzysztof Ratajski 6-1 Robbie Knops
Ross Smith 6-5 Ross Montgomery
Jim Williams 6-1 Pascal Rupprecht
Kevin Doets 6-2 Jose De Sousa
Gabriel Clemens 6-3 Jose Justicia
Danny Noppert 6-3 Ted Evetts
Jeffrey De Zwaan 6-3 Jeff Smith
Scott Waites 6-4 Joe Cullen
Madars Razma 6-1 Radek Szaganski
Rob Cross 6-1 Lewy Williams
Niels Zonneveld 6-4 Simon Whitlock
Matt Campbell 6-3 Bradley Brooks
Mike De Decker 6-4 Stephen Burton
Jeffrey Sparidaans 6-4 Connor Scutt
Gian van Veen 6-5 Callan Rydz
Jonny Clayton 6-4 Mario Vandenbogaerde
Martin Lukeman 6-5 Daniel Klose
Losers: £750

Last 32
Jamie Hughes 6-5 Luke Humphries
Andrew Gilding 6-5 Adam Gawlas
Gerwyn Price 6-4 Scott Williams
Richard Veenstra 6-4 Jermaine Wattimena
Kim Huybrechts 6-4 Nathan Aspinall
Ricardo Pietreczko 6-4 Chris Dobey
Adam Warner 6-2 Steve Lennon
Josh Rock 6-2 Krzysztof Ratajski
Ross Smith 6-3 Jim Williams
Gabriel Clemens 6-4 Kevin Doets
Danny Noppert 6-5 Jeffrey De Zwaan
Madars Razma 6-2 Scott Waites
Niels Zonneveld 6-4 Rob Cross
Matt Campbell 6-3 Mike De Decker
Gian van Veen 6-5 Jeffrey Sparidaans
Jonny Clayton 6-1 Martin Lukeman
Losers: £1,250

Last 16
Andrew Gilding 6-3 Jamie Hughes
Gerwyn Price 6-2 Richard Veenstra
Kim Huybrechts 6-2 Ricardo Pietreczko
Josh Rock 6-3 Adam Warner
Gabriel Clemens 6-3 Ross Smith
Madars Razma 6-4 Danny Noppert
Matt Campbell 6-2 Niels Zonneveld
Gian van Veen 6-4 Jonny Clayton
Losers: £2,000

Quarter-Finals
Gerwyn Price 6-5 Andrew Gilding
Kim Huybrechts 6-5 Josh Rock
Gabriel Clemens 6-3 Madars Razma
Matt Campbell 6-3 Gian van Veen
Losers: £3,000

Semi-Finals
Kim Huybrechts 7-3 Gerwyn Price
Gabriel Clemens 7-4 Matt Campbell
Losers: £4,000

Final
Kim Huybrechts 8-1 Gabriel Clemens
Winner: £12,000
Runner-up: £8,000