Preview European Championship 2023: Will an outsider strike again, or will a top favourite take victory?

From October 26 to 29, the sixteenth edition of the European Championship is on the program. The best 32 players of the European Tour 2023 will be in action during this tournament.

The European Championship, will once again take place at the Westfalenhallen in Dortmund. This venue also hosted this tournament in 2018 and 2022. This tournament has already worn out its fair share of venues, as the European Darts Championship was previously held in Frankfurt (2008), Hoofddorp (2009), Dinslaken (2010), Düsseldorf (2011), Mülheim (2012-2014), Hasselt (2015-2017), Göttingen (2019), Oberhausen (2020) and Salzburg (2021).

Honours List

The tournament has also seen quite a few different winners. The previous eight editions produced eight different winners. Phil Taylor dominated the tournament from 2008 through 2011, but final victories followed for Simon Whitlock (2012) and Adrian Lewis (2013).

Then came the era of Michael van Gerwen. 'Mighty Mike' grabbed four titles in a row from 2014 to 2017. The past five years have provided four different ones. James Wade was the best in 2018, while Rob Cross triumphed in 2019 and 2021. Peter Wright prevailed in 2020, while the biggest surprise winner came in 2022. Ross Smith stunned then by defeating Michael Smith in the final and capturing his first major title.

Nine darters sparse

During previous years, four players managed to throw a nine-darter at the European Championship. Adrian Lewis, Michael van Gerwen, Kyle Anderson and Jose de Sousa managed to achieve this feat.

Those nine darters fell during the 2011, 2014, 2017 and 2020 editions. Perhaps that bodes well for a perfect lay during the 2023 European Darts Championship in Dortmund this week.

Top favourites and outsiders

Among bookmakers, Michael van Gerwen is narrowly the top favorite. The four-time European Championship winner has had little fun at this tournament over the past five years. He lost the final in 2021, but in 2018, 2019, 2020 and 2022, Van Gerwen was invariably eliminated before the quarter-finals.

Behind Van Gerwen, Gerwyn Price and Luke Humphries follow as the biggest favourites for the title. The two were most recently in the final of the World Grand Prix, with Humphries finally winning his first major title.

Dave Chisnall is seeded first at the European Darts Championship as he managed to win three Euro Tour tournaments this year. However, 'Chizzy' meets Chris Dobey in the first round, and also has Stephen Bunting, Michael Smith and Peter Wright in his quarter. So a quarter with many contenders to at least make it to the last four...

Where to watch the European Darts Championship?

In the UK, the tournament in full will be shown on ITV, with other territories being shown on a variety of platforms including Viaplay in the Netherlands, DAZN in Germany and PDCTV in those without TV coverage

Thursday's first round begins at 5:45pm and finishes at 10pm on ITV4. As ever due to football coverage, it will then shift onto ITV3 for Friday and also Saturday's evening session with a slightly later start time of 6pm on the latter. The afternoon session returns to ITV4 for 12pm start time.

For the Quarter-Finals (12pm) and Semi-Finals and Final (6pm), it will solely be on ITV4 until its conclusion.

How much prize money is up for grabs at the European Darts Championship?

The PDC has provided £500,000 in prize money for this event. All 32 participants are guaranteed a £6,000 starting premium.

With a win in the first round, the proceeds rise to £10,000. This eventually rises further to £120,000 in prize money for the winner of the European Darts Championship.

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