INTERVIEW - Long awaited Ladies Qualifier finally around the corner for Hammond: 'It's a massive opportunity'
The first of two Ladies Qualifiers for the PDC World Darts Championship will be played on Saturday in Düsseldorf. Corrine Hammond is one of the familiar names who is trying to win one of the two spots.
The PDC announced a field expansion for the World Championship in June this year. They increased the field to 96 competitors, with additional professionals joining an expanded group of international qualifiers which included two female contenders.
''I’m definitely looking forward to it! It seems like it’s taken forever to finally come around'', Hammond said in an Interview with Dartsnews.com ahead of the Ladies Qualifier in Germany.
''It’s a massive opportunity that the PDC have provided to the ladies - and, in my opinion, anyone who doesn’t take it on is crazy.''
''I expect the UK qualifier in Milton Keynes next week will have a larger turnout though - just because it’s more ‘local’, being in the United Kingdom for UK players.''
The 36-year-old Australian is tipped as one of the favourites for the Rest of the World Qualifier in Düsseldorf. There are no specific rivals for her, as she underestimate none of her competitors.
Every other player in the room is my rival! The only other player I know for certain that has entered is Anastasia (Dobromyslova), and of course, she’s one to watch.''
Despite the unique circumstances around the Ladies Qualifier, Hammond has not made any adjustments to her preparation. This is the same as preparing for a BDO tournament.
''I haven’t really approached it any differently to how I approach any other tournament. There’s a fine line between preparation and overthinking the situation, and I’m conscious of that. What will be, will be.''
Hype around ladies darts
Since the PDC's announcement, the attention for the female side of the sport has increased slightly. The former Lakeside finalist thinks the hype for ladies darts will rise again soon.
''When it was first announced, there was a lot of attention surrounding it, particularly on social media. It has quietened a little since then. Although I’m sure it will ramp up again once the qualifiers are decided.''