Tickets are now on general sale for the 2015 edition of Premier League Darts, which begins on February 5th.
Although the final line-up won’t be confirmed until the end of the season, when the Order of Merit determines who the top four players of 2014 were, the PDC have already confirmed that 16-time World Champion Phil Taylor will be present, joined by current champion Raymond van Barneveld and world number one Michael van Gerwen.
As for the others – it’s all up in the air. In 2014, the top four qualified through the rankings, with a further four given wildcards by the PDC and another two by Sky Sports, the host broadcaster. On current form, this will see Adrian Lewis and Peter Wright join the other three. Wildcards could potentially go to anybody, but it would be hard to overlook Gary Anderson for his fifth straight year having reached the playoffs earlier this year. James Wade may also return after a year out, whilst more left-field options could be Lakeside champion and PDC débutante Stephen Bunting and in-form youngster Michael Smith.
Wes Newton has now finished ninth in both of his appearances and there must someone better out there that could take his place. Robert Thornton may hold on to his place with three Players Championship victories this year and currently ninth in the Order of Merit. His stock is also championed by his part in the historic occasion of scoring a nine-darter in the same match as Wade in last week’s World Grand Prix in Dublin. Dave Chisnall has a decent chance of holding on to his spot despite not reaching a single final in 2014 so far.
There are relatively few tournaments left to affect a change in the Order of Merit. Four Players Championships and the finals in November aside, the calendar now just holds the European Championship (the draw for which was completed yesterday), the Masters and the Grand Slam of Darts, the latter seeing four new entrants announced this week. After all this, the 2015 World Championship begins and the Premier League is soon upon us.
The competition runs from February 5th to the final on May 21st, which also includes the Youth World Championship final. Tickets range from £20 (tiered seating) to £40 in front row tables. Booking fees may apply at all arenas and the event in Dublin has a minimum ticket price of €25.
Feb 5 – First Direct Arena, Leeds
Feb 12 – BIC, Bournemouth
Feb 19 – Echo Arena, Liverpool
Feb 26 – Odyssey Arena, Belfast
Mar 5 – Westpoint Arena, Exeter
Mar 12 – Capital FM Arena, Nottingham
Mar 19 – SSE Hydro, Glasgow
Mar 26 – 3Arena, Dublin
Apr 2 – Phones4U Arena, Manchester (Judgement Night)
Apr 9 – Motorpoint Arena, Sheffield
Apr 16 – GE Oil & Gas Arena, Aberdeen
Apr 23 – Motorpoint Arena, Cardiff
Apr 30 – NIA, Birmingham
May 7 – Metro Radio Arena, Newcastle
May 14 – The Brighton Centre, Brighton
May 21 – The O2, London (play-offs)