Van Duijvenbode raises expectations after breakthrough year: "Preferably top 16, but I'll have to do well for that"
Last season Dirk van Duijvenbode experienced his big breakthrough with a final at the World Grand Prix and quarter-finals at the European Championship, Players Championship Finals and the PDC World Darts Championship.
This is after, he had recaptured his Tour Card at Q-School in January of that year and managed to work his way up to the 32nd position in the Order of Merit in one year, a ranking based on performance over two years. Van Duijvenbode has continued to claim good results this season and is therefore still rising on the PDC Order of Merit, in which he now occupies 31st place.
After his rise, Van Duijvenbode is no longer the open-minded dart player who occasionally got a good result on the Pro Tour.
The outside world expects him to do well on the tournaments and also for himself the expectations are higher.
"I go to tournaments in a different way, the bar is set a little higher. In the floor tournaments, I was not always consistent. That was for me a point of improvement. I want to get to the quarter-finals more often and preferably further,'' Van Duijvenbode told Dartsnews in an interview.
Until 2020, the 28-year-old had made only four quarterfinals on the PDC Tour in five years. Since last season he has reached the last eight nine times, including four times in a TV tournament. So Van Duijvenbode is getting closer and closer to winning titles and hopes to have a first PDC title to his name this year.
''A quarterfinal is always a good result, but you want more. You just hope to win a tournament. Whether that is the goal for this season? ''Yes, I do want to win a tournament, or at least reach a final on the Pro Tour.''
With good results on the Pro Tour tournaments, Van Duijvenbode can then qualify for all the TV tournaments.
"I want to participate in all the tournaments that I can qualify for. Those are the World Matchplay, World Grand Prix, Players Championship Finals and the World Darts Championship. The last two are already sure, but for the Matchplay and Grand Prix, I still have to work.
Participation in these tournaments help 'The Titan' to climb even further up the world rankings, especially since Van Duijvenbode does not have to defend any prize money yet in 2021.
''Personally I'm not so concerned with that at all,'' he responds when asked if that is an advantage for him. ''I just want to get as high on the Order of Merit as possible at the end of the year. Preferably top 16, but I'll have to do well for that.''