Can you put “three in a bed” at will? No? Well it seems as if the men who can, will be coming back to weave their magic again.
After a highly successful debut by world darts last year, eight of the world’s top PDC stars have signed up to be at the Auckland Darts Masters being held at The Trusts Arena from Friday 17 June through Sunday 19 June.
The even bigger news, however, is that New Zealand, and hopefully the Arena will be in line to host another round of the World Series Darts this year as well and possibly for several years to come.
Once the sport of pubs played by eagle-eyed, beer bellied men who could put the “arrows” wherever they like in the “pie”, no matter how many “cats had been on the counter”, darts is now a sophisticated, professional, televised global sport followed by millions.
When a round of the World Series Darts came to The Trusts Arena last year, following the world trend, it ignited “darts mania” here. The final saw Englishman Adrian ”Jackpot” Lewis beating Raymond “Barney” van Barneveld (Netherlands) 11-10, in an edge-of-the-seat thriller, played out to a packed house.
This year the top eight Professional Darts Association players will be here at least to contest the Auckland title. They are current PDC world champion Gary Anderson, Michael van Gerwen, Phil Taylor, Adrian Lewis, Peter Wright, James Wade, Raymond van Barneveld and Stephen Bunting. Filling out the contenders will be eight qualifiers for the first round of each tournament.
Meanwhile, New Zealand’s best with the arrows, Rob Szabo, has returned from the world championships in London in the belief that the professional body is set to announce a four year deal for New Zealand to be part of the global tour.
New Zealand officials won’t confirm anything but it is known that the world’s leading professional players are eager to return to Auckland.
And just for the uninitiated, “arrows” are darts, “three in a bed” is three arrows in the same number, a “pie” is the dartboard and “cats on the counter” are the drinks that the losers buy for the winners.