Champions League of Darts Preview | Peter Manley on ‘Behind The Bar’

On this week’s ‘Behind The Bar with Paul Starr’ on Tungsten Tales Darts Peter ‘One Dart’ Manley previews The Champions League of Darts in Cardiff on September 24-25th which will be televised by the BBC.

Champions League of Darts – Cardiff

MICHAEL VAN GERWEN and Phil Taylor will renew their rivalry in the Unibet Champions League of Darts following the confirmation of the competing players for September’s inaugural BBC2-televised event.

Dutch star van Gerwen has surpassed 16-time World Champion Taylor as the world number one in recent years, and overcame the 55-year-old 18-10 in the recent World Matchplay final in Blackpool.

The rivals will be joined by Scottish duo Peter Wright and Robert Thornton in Group A for the round-robin phase of the BBC2-televised Champions League of Darts next month in a tasty quartet who will face off over the opening three sessions in Cardiff.

Group B will feature reigning World Champion Gary Anderson, two-time World Champion Adrian Lewis, multiple-major winner James Wade and the former World Youth Champion Michael Smith, with the groupings based on the standard seeding pattern for PDC events.

The opening fixtures in the afternoon session of Saturday September 24 will see van Gerwen take on Thornton, in a repeat of the 2015 World Grand Prix final, while Taylor faces Wright, the colourful world number five.

Scottish superstar Anderson will take on St Helens’ emerging ace Smith, while a tasty fixture sees Lewis meet with Wade – with the pair having enjoyed many memorable clashes over the past decade, including the Stoke ace landing a nine-dart finish when they faced off in the Premier League in April.

Saturday’s evening session will see the players compete in their second fixture, as the afternoon’s two winning players in each group then meet and the two losers in each group also face off.

Sunday’s afternoon session will then feature the remaining round-robin fixtures, before the top two players from each group move through to play off for the title in Sunday evening’s semi-finals and final.

“We were already excited by the prospect of the world’s top eight players competing in the Unibet Champions League of Darts, but seeing the groups has given an even greater anticipation for this event,” said PDC Chairman Barry Hearn.

“The rivalry between Michael van Gerwen and Phil Taylor has built over nearly a decade and all eyes will be on them when they meet – but they’ve both got important openers against Robert Thornton and Peter Wright to overcome first.

“Group B will include a rematch of the World Championship final between Gary Anderson and Adrian Lewis, and when they are on top of their games they’re a joy to watch, and with James Wade and Michael Smith in the mix too it’s going to be another tight group.”

Tickets, starting from just £15, are still available for the Unibet Champions League of Darts.

To purchase call the Motorpoint Arena Box Office on 02920 22 44 88 or visit

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