Max Hopp is still only 22 years old, but is set to play his fifth World Cup of Darts already. He represents Germany with Martin Schindler and will play in front of his own crowd in Hamburg.
”That is great of course as the whole crowd will support us”, Hopp told Dartsnews in an interview. Germany faces Hungary in the first round and ‘The Maximiser’ says this draw offers a good perspective.
”Hungary is a good draw for us. I saw Pal Szekely [one of the players from Hungary] playing against Raymond van Barneveld [at the Dutch Darts Masters]. He seemed to be a bit nervous, but of course he has not as much experience as Martin and me.”
All-doubles format at the World Cup
Hopp likes playing at the World Cup of Darts. He would like to see that the entire tournament would be played in pairs. With the current format, there will be pairs in the first round and the final. In the second round, quarter-finals and semi-finals the matches will start with two singles matches. If the scores are tied a doubles match will settle the match.
”I like playing pairs. I hope they decide to only play pairs during this tournament in the future. Unfortunately this is only in the first round now, after that we start with singles.”
Barney and Van Gerwen were deadly
While Germany is counted among the outsiders, favorites Netherlands and England both compete with a new player in their team. Jermaine Wattimena replaces Raymond van Barneveld and plays with Michael van Gerwen. Michael Smith is the new teammate of Rob Cross in the English team.
As a result Hopp thinks the World Cup of Darts will be more open then it was before, as only England and the Netherlands have won this nation tournament in the past. ”I think so. Barney has a lot of experience and that was deadly in the combination with Van Gerwen.”
”Jermaine is part of the team now. Less experience, but still a quality darts player. He is the world number 23 now, so he can show nice things as well.”