Toon Greebe claimed a landmark major success on the darts circuit with the Poland Open title.
The 30-year-old beat Sebastian Steyer 6-3 to claim the trophy in Police. Greebe’s Polish triumph is all the more remarkable, given that almost 18 months ago, health complications led to his foot being amputated. The man from Den Bosch has found his way back to the top.
“It is without a doubt my biggest title,” Greebe told Omroep Brabant.
“Very special. Before my amputation, I had never won such a big tournament.
“It now feels as if I have really left the rotten period behind me.”
Greebe has appeared in both PDC and BDO darts, qualifying for the former World Championship on two occasions. But his darting journey suffered a massive setback as he was rushed to hospital in December 2017. Due to a growing infection in his foot, amputation was the only course of action. As a result, the Dutchman relies on prosthesis to walk. It can also be used to help him continue playing darts.
“I just got the final tube for my stump. I have to do this for the rest of my life,” he explained.
“It’s fitted precisely, so I can remain very stable.”
Greebe attempted in January to claim a PDC Tour Card. His Q-School attempt did not work out, but it does mean that he can compete on the PDC and BDO scenes.
“I was hugely disappointed, but I left this behind me a while ago now – I now play as many tournaments as possible at the PDC and BDO.
“I think I set the bar too high, because I wanted too much. Really, I have to build up to it,” the Dutchman admitted.
Having a foot in both camps allowed Greebe to attend a double-header of BDO events in Poland. Along with his Poland Open triumph was a strong run at the Police Masters.
“I reached the final and threw well. Unfortunately, I lost the Police Masters final.
“I showed that weekend that I can throw really well all the time. That’s how it always has to be. But again, I don’t want to get ahead of myself after that victory.
“Stay calm, and just keep going.”
World Championship dream
It has been nine years since Greebe appeared at the World Championship. Two years after his Ally Pally debut ended in defeat to Peter Manley, he exited the 2010 edition at the hands of John Part. Immediately following the amputation, Greebe had made it his goal to return. He would be the first single-legged competitor at a World Championship if he could manage it.
A year and a half on from that, the intention remains the same.
“I still want that. I do everything for it, and am constantly playing darts. If it fails this year, we’ll try again next year.
“But it will happen, I know that for sure,” the ambitious Dutch ace pledged.
Author: Ed McCosh