WDF confirms return to Lakeside with new World Championship in 2022

Jamie Shaw in WDF Darts 06 Jun 2021
The famous Lakeside venue hosted the BDO World Championship from 1986-2019 (Credit: Steven Paston/PA Images)

The World Darts Federation (WDF) has announced it will host a new World Championship at Lakeside in January 2022.

The sport will return to its spiritual home at Frimley Green with a revamped amateur World Championship taking place from January 1-9.

The Men’s, Women’s and Youth Lakeside World Championships are set to be televised live via the Eurosport and Discovery+ network.

The iconic venue played host to the BDO World Championship from 1986-2019 before the BDO moved the World Championship to the Indigo O2 in 2020 and were eventually liquidated later that year.

The WDF has implemented a new ranking system that includes regional tables for both men and women, plus ‘Gold’ graded events where winners directly qualify for the World Championship.

The 2022 WDF Lakeside World Championships will feature 48 men and 24 women, while the Semi-Finals and final of the Youth event will also be played on stage.

Wayne Warren, the 2020 Men’s BDO World Champion and reigning Women’s World Champion Mikuru Suzuki have both received invitations to compete at Lakeside in 2022.

They will be joined by 2020 Dutch Open and Scottish Open winners Ross Montgomery, Aileen de Graaf, Jim Williams and Beau Greaves.

The full line-up for the inaugural WDF World Championship will be completed in December following a new World Masters in the Netherlands.

There, the World Championship play-offs will take place, offering players from more than 70 countries the opportunity to qualify.

The WDF was formed in 1974 and is an established governing body for the sport across 73 member countries.

The rankings are based on a cumulative points system on a one-year rolling basis, similar to ATP Rankings in tennis.

When a tournament is played, the previous year’s results are removed from the rankings, with the list used to determine seeds for some of the WDF Opens.

The news of a WDF World Championship comes less than a fortnight after Modern Amateur Darts (MAD) revealed its plans to host a 64-player World Championship in December 2022.

Details of sponsorships and prize funds for both the WDF and MAD World Championships remain unconfirmed.

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