Going Dutch: Summer 2023

Red Dragon Darts

Our favourite Dutchman, Wim Blokpoel, is back with another look at the ups and downs of Dutch darters:

When you look at the biggests events it is fair to say the last few months have been disappointing for the Dutch dartplayers. It started with the first game defeat at the World Cup which Dirk van Duijvenbode and Danny Noppert suffered from after losing in a thrilling last leg to Belgium.

After that, the women’s series was succesful for the Dutch ladies as this time we had not just one but even two Dutch participants in the Women’s World Matchplay in last years finalist Aileen de Graaf and debutant Noa-Lynn van Leuven who made the final of the last event before the cut-off to sneak into the field.

However, Van Leuven got whitewashed by an incredible player and eventual winner Beau Greaves, while De Graaf also lost first round to eventual finalist Mikuru Suzuki. In the men’s World Matchplay thinks did not go much better with an early exit for returning Raymond van Barneveld, and shockingly for Michael van Gerwen against Brendan Dolan.

With both Noppert and Van Duijvenbode suffering a narrow second round defeat we did not even have a Dutch quarter-finalilst. And although Noppert did win his opening game in the World Series Down Under, ‘The Freeze’ could not get over the line in either of his quarterfinal games there after losing to both Gerwyn Price and Rob Cross. However away from the tv the Dutch players have actually performed at a very high level.

Berry van Peer is still leading the Challenge Tour and also won the first ever NDB Masters, a big event which was held after the ranking season ended. Van Peer beat Wessel Nijman in a high quality final where he had 8 perfect darts in the final leg of the match, having also had 7 perfect darts in his semi-final game.

In the ladies event we saw Lerena Rietbergen winning the title, benefitting from the early exits the bigger names had. Rietbergen beat Desiree Geel in the final to win, while the youth titles went to Pim van Bijnen and Fardau de Jong.Over to the WDF, where the Dutch players showed their class in the events in Belgium.

Wesley Plaisier picked up his third ranking WDF title after winning the Antwerp Open, beating an inspired Matthew Edgar in the final. The World Master wasn’t the only Dutch player to win in Belgium that weekend though, as Sydnee de Vries won the Belgian Open for the boys while Noa-Lynn van Leuven won the ladies event, beating Rhian O’Sullivan in the final.

In the MODUS Super Series there was plenty of Dutch success too. Both Berry van Peer and Jeroen Mioch did not only win a week as ADC Europe qualfiers, they also both reached finals night in the Champions Week! Van Peer then also went on to make the semifinals there before losing to Luke Littler (who doesn’t these days). But Van Peer will be back as ADC Europe player in series 5 after his NDB Masters victory. 

After his Antwerp Open title, Plaisier also won his second career Challenge Tour title after a final win over Scott Mitchell, while he also reached a final in the same weekend. In the Development Tour, Wessel Nijman won another title to hold on to his provisional World Championship and Tourcard spot, while Gian van Veen reached three finals in one weekend, of which he won one final too!

In the next months there’s even more to look forward to as a Dutch darts fan or player. We have an incredible team for the WDF World Cup in Denmark while we will also once again see the World Series Finals take place in Amsterdam next month!


Images: PDC

Words: Wim Blokpoel

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