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Are you interested in successfully betting at the Grand Slam of Darts? Make sure you know how the tournament is set up, what betting markets there are, and where the odds are. We start at the beginning.
The Grand Slam of Darts once began as a showdown between BDO and PDC. Today it is a major ranking tournament of the PDC.
When betting on darts, you have many tournaments from the PDC calendar to choose from. For instance, you can bet on the Premier League of Darts for months, around the turn of the year on the PDC World Darts Championship, the World Grand Prix and the European Darts Championship. Now we will take a closer look at the set-up, history, betting markets and top matches of the Grand Slam of Darts.
Format – PDC Grand Slam of Darts
As mentioned, the first editions of the Grand Slam of Darts were kind of a mixed tournament of the darts associations BDO and PDC. The first Grand Slam in 2007 was populated by invitation for finalists of major tournaments in 2006 and 2007, and semi-finalists of the World Cups of both federations.
In addition to the World Cups, the tournaments were: World Matchplay, World Grand Prix and World Masters (2006), UK Open, Las Vegas Desert Classic, Premier League, World Series of Darts, International Darts League, and World Darts Trophy. In addition, there were some wildcards and qualifying spots. From 2007 to 2017, the Civic Hall in Wolverhampton was the venue. In 2018 and 2019, and from 2021 onwards at WV Active – Aldersley, Wolverhampton. Once at Coventry’s Ricoh Arena in 2020.
More PDC, less BDO
For that first tournament, Michael van Gerwen, for example, still qualified through the BDO, where he was playing at the time. From 2010, by the way, only the BDO World Cup counted, while all kinds of PDC tournaments along with the PDC World Cup counted for entry positions. From 2015 there were more and more tickets for the PDC entrants and fewer for the BDO, as the association was already weakening by then. In 2020, the BDO went bankrupt, so there were no more BDO participants from 2021. This did make it a bit more manageable when placing bets on the Grand Slam of Darts. After all, you no longer have to compare the performances of darters at different federations, as all players now had a relative record of matches against each other.
The tournament itself is played with 32 darters. They start in a group stage with eight groups of four darters. The draw is done as in sports like football with protected ranking. The best players are in group 1, the next best four are in group 2, and so on. In the group stage it is a best of 9 legs, so 5 legs to win. The best two from each group qualify for the eighth finals. The number 1’s all play against a number 2. In the eighth finals it is a best of 19 legs. All rounds thereafter are best of 31 legs.
History – PDC Grand Slam of Darts
The BDO was, of course, the first major darts federation, from which the PDC had emerged in the early 1990s with Phil Taylor, among others, as one of its founding members. In the 90s and early 00s, the PDC became increasingly stronger and more attractive than the BDO. But who had the best darters now? There were once matches between the world champions of both federations. In 2007 there came a mixed tournament, the Grand Slam of Darts. Interesting encounters and odds were guaranteed of course, to those who were betting on the Grand Slam of Darts.
In February 2007, PDC chairman Barry Hearn announced that the finalists of the 2006 and 2007 PDC and BDO major tournaments would compete in the new tournament. Raymond van Barneveld qualified as the 2007 PDC world champion, Michael van Gerwen as the winner of the 2006 BDO World Masters. Martin Adams was the only one from the BDO to decline his invitation. He did not think it was acceptable for the Winmau World Masters to be played at the same time. The BDO world champion opted for the World Masters, but stranded in the quarter-finals.
Grand Slam of Darts: Phil Taylor naturally dominates
While Phil Taylor was not the 2007 PDC world champion, he was the champ from 1995-2006, with the exception of 2003 (which championed John Part). He won the first tournament in the final over Andy Hamilton. The only BDO player in the semi-finals was Gary Anderson. The 2008 and 2009 editions also went to Taylor, and something of an anomaly occurred in 2010. Scott Waites, losing finalist of 2009, was the only BDO player ever to win the Grand Slam of Darts.
To Michael van Gerwen and Gerwyn Price
In 2011, 2013 and 2014 Phil Taylor won again, and in 2012 he was ‘interrupted’ by an all-Dutch final. Raymond van Barneveld was then narrowly stronger than Michael van Gerwen in a tight match that ended 16-14. From 2015, it was the big Mighty Mike show for three years. And for the past four years, the tournament went to Welshman Gerwyn Price three times (and once to José de Sousa).
Interestingly, Peter Wright has the finalist shakes at the Grand Slam of Darts. He lost the final in 2017, 2019 and 2021. Scotland has never stood on the top step of the podium anyway. After all, Wright’s compatriot Gary Anderson was a losing finalist twice, and Robert Thornton once. Statistics to keep in mind when betting on the Grand Slam of Darts.
Statistics – Grand Slam of Darts
When it comes to the numbers, the first thing we look at, of course, are the winners. Michael van Gerwen still has to keep trying to knock Phil Taylor off the throne. After all, The Power has won six times in his 11 appearances. Michael van Gerwen is tied with Gerwyn Price at three wins each. Scott Waites, Raymond van Barneveld and José de Sousa are one-off winners.
Van Gerwen did attend almost all tournaments. In 2009 he failed to qualify. Two players attended all 15 editions: James Wade and Gary Anderson. Unfortunately, they cannot add a final victory to that. Anderson lost two finals, Wade even lost three: in 2010 to Scott Waites, in 2016 to Michael van Gerwen, and finally in 2020 to José de Sousa.
Grand Slam of Darts: nine-darters and averages
James Wade may boast that he threw the first nine-darter at the Grand Slam of Darts. In 2008, he did so in the second round against Gary Anderson, a game he lost, by the way. Two of the four nine darters came from a Belgian hand: in 2014 from Kim Huybrechts, and in 2018 from Dimitri Van den Bergh. In 2015, Dave Chisnall threw a perfect leg.
Nine of the 10 best averages were in the group stage, where players must win just five legs. Michael van Gerwen holds the record with 115.19, ahead of Dimitri Van den Bergh (114.85) and Phil Taylor (114.65). Geert De Vos and Michael Smith complete the top five. Among the bottom five best averages we find Mighty Mike once again, Gary Anderson twice and Phil Taylor twice. In 2011, The Power threw an average of 112.37 against Wes Newton in a best of 19 (result 10-3).
Michael van Gerwen also has the two best tournament averages, with over 105 in both 2015 and 2017 (when he also won). In total, Mighty Mike threw an average of 100+ 40 times so far, Phil Taylor 45 times and Gary Anderson 30 times. The tournament average is a super interesting betting market to place Grand Slam of Darts bets on.
Betting markets – PDC Grand Slam of Darts
When betting on darts, there are often a number of odds (betting markets) to choose from. We explain some of the ones you can choose from at most, if not all, bookmakers.
Betting on Grand Slam of Darts – group winners
This tournament starts with a group stage, in which very short games are played. The best players have a protected ranking, but could just be surprised by an upstart or a returning rival. Maybe someone from group 2 takes the group win? At several bookmakers, you can of course bet on the group winner.
Betting on Grand Slam of Darts – high checkouts
Darts basically has two phases in a leg. First, you need to score big to go down as quickly as possible. After that, it’s a matter of finishing. Some players master both and some are specialists in one of the two. Michael van Gerwen is obviously a master of both and often throws high checkouts. But Peter Wright, James Wade and Rob Cross are also known for strong finishes. You can bet on who throws the highest checkout in a match, or in the tournament.
Betting on PDC Grand Slam of Darts – outright
There are plenty of matches where you can bet on live darts. Of course, there are always great odds on the outright winner of the PDC Grand Slam of Darts, for example. Can Michael van Gerwen win the tournament once again, or will Gerwyn Price continue his winning streak? In any case, we wouldn’t bet on a Scottish player with all those lost finals!
Historic matches – PDC Grand Slam of Darts
Quarter-finals 2010 – Steve Beaton vs Phil Taylor
One of the nicest darters you can come across is Steve Beaton. ‘The Bronzed Adonis’ has never won a major PDC tournament (he did win the 1996 BDO World Cup), but has played some fantastic matches. This was also the case in the 2010 quarter-finals of the Grand Slam of Darts. Phil Taylor had won the first three editions and was leading 14-11 against Beaton. Beaton did not let himself off the hook and won five legs in a row, and thus the match 16-14.
2012 quarterfinals – Michael van Gerwen vs Scott Waites (Dutch commentary)
In 2013, Michael van Gerwen began his great rise in the PDC. His wins included the Premier League of Darts and Players Championship Finals. Moreover, he was a losing finalist of the PDC World Darts Championship against Phil Taylor. In 2012, he won the World Grand Prix and lost the final of the Grand Slam of Darts against Raymond van Barneveld. The quarter-final against Scott Waites was fantastic, with even two 170 finishes. He would even throw the maximum checkout four times that tournament.
2013 semi-final – Phil Taylor vs Adrian Lewis
In terms of averages, this match is one of the best matches of all time. Phil Taylor and Adrian Lewis threw the triple 20 all over the place in this semi-final. Taylor immediately set the tone with a 180 on his first three darts. In total, the two English darters threw 32 maximums and achieved bizarre averages: Phil Taylor 109.46 and Adrian Lewis 110.99. Despite that score, Lewis lost the match 16-9.
More Darts Events
The PDC World Darts Championship in the Alexandra Palace is hailed by many as the greatest darts tournament. The best darts players in the world will cross darts to decide who is the very best in early January.
One of the most favoured tournaments in darts is the PDC World Series of Darts.
At various locations around the world, players from the top of the PDC Ranking will compete against local players.
The Dutch Open is played according to the knockout system where the winner of each match advances to the next round. For fans of betting on darts, this is definitely not to be missed.
One of the most enjoyable tournaments on the PDC calendar is the PDC World Grand Prix. A different format, lots of excitement and unpredictability.
The Premier League Darts is an annual competition. The Premier League Darts tournament lasts from February to May and has been organised since 2005.
Ten players from the PDC compete for a share of the £1,000,000 prize pool.
At times facing each other, at times side by side. That’s the PDC World Cup of Darts, a Nations Cup featuring the best two darters from each country.
Which country has the best darts duo, and which team forms the best blend?
The Grand Slam of Darts has been an annual tournament since 2007. Qualification for the Grand Slam of Darts is through the other tournaments.
Only the winners of the other darts television tournaments qualify.
Only the best darters can be seen at The PDC Masters darts tournament.
Each year, the best 24 darters compete in this challenging tournament, right after the PDC World Darts Championship has ended.
The Paddy Power Champions League of Darts was an annual non-ranking darts tournament featuring just the top eight players.
Following the COVID cancellation of the 2020 tournament the tournament was quietly shelved by the PDC.
Since 2008, the European Championship Darts has been on the PDC calendar. The ranking tournament in late October guarantees top darts sportsmanship and performance every year.
The UK Open Darts is also known as the FA Cup of darts.
The comparison comes from the specific format of the UK Open Darts. At other tournaments seeded players meet late, but at the UK Open Darts, things are a bit different.
A series of countrywide tournaments taking place over a few months, in between the other championships, that culminate in a stand off of the best darters.
The Grand Slam of Darts is a prestigious tournament that brings together players from both the Professional Darts Corporation (PDC) and the British Darts Organisation (BDO). It holds importance as a unique platform for players from different organizations to compete against each other, showcasing the unity and diversity of the darts community.
The tournament’s diverse player field from both the PDC and the BDO, and intriguing matchups create a dynamic betting landscape, allowing enthusiasts to capitalize on their knowledge and ability to compare competitors from different darts environments.
Phil Taylor scored a 9-dart finish in 2008, Raymond van Barneveld in 2012, James Wade in 2014, Gary Anderson in 2016, and Michael van Gerwen in 2018.
In 2010 Scott Waites claimed a victory for BDO over the runner-up James Wade. This was also the only BDO victory so far.
It is not, and women from both the PDC and the BDO have been invited to participate. A female champion is yet to emerge, however.