Raymond van Barneveld is set to play his last PDC ranking event in the Netherlands this weekend. ‘Barney’ is among the 48 competitors at the Dutch Darts Masters, one of the European Tour events.
Van Barneveld makes his first appearance at the Dutch Darts Masters since 2013. In the past few years the former postman didn’t qualify or the tournament simply did not fit in his schedule.
The Dutchman is happy with qualifying for the European Tour event in Zwolle. The 52-year-old thinks this will be his last real chance to qualify for the World Matchplay, which will be played in July, he told Dutch newspaper De Stentor.
”This is one of the European Tour event. It’s very difficult to understand how our ranking system works, but basicly this is my last real chance to qualify for the World Matchplay, one of the nicest tournaments in the world”, Van Barneveld explained.
‘At least a final’
Van Barneveld needs a very deep run at the Dutch Darts Masters to qualify for the World Matchplay. ”At least a final and that will be difficult enough”, he said.
”I need to start on Friday. I don’t know my opponent yet, as the draw is on Thursday. If I reach the second round, then I face one of the seeded players which could be Rob Cross or Michael van Gerwen.”
It’s not the first time Van Barneveld will bring a visit to host city Zwolle. ”I have been there a very long time ago, because my former brother in law lives there. But I have no longer contact with him. I wanted to play in Zwolle last year, but didn’t came through the qualifier. I did this year and I’m very happy with that.”
Darts fans can follow livescores during the Dutch Darts Masters this weekend (May 24-26) here.