The double-start event gets under way on Sunday, October 6, live on Daily Week Sports
Last Updated: 17/09/19 4:44pm
Michael van Gerwen won his first PDC televised title at the World Grand Prix in 2012
Michael van Gerwen will begin his bid for a fifth World Grand Prix title at the Citywest Convention Centre in Dublin next month, with the field set to be confirmed following this weekend’s Players Championship double-header.
The unique double-start event will signal the beginning of an action-packed climax to the darting season on Daily Week Sports, which also includes the Grand Slam of Darts and the 2020 World Championship at Alexandra Palace.
Van Gerwen defeated Peter Wright to scoop his fourth Grand Prix crown 12 months ago, although ‘The Green Machine’ has been nowhere near his vintage best since clinching a fifth Premier League title in May.
Second-seed Rob Cross is aiming to win his first match at this tournament, having suffered opening-round exits against Steve Beaton in each of the last two years.
The players need to both begin and end each leg with a double.
First Round: Best of 3 sets
Second Round: Best of 5 sets
Quarter-Finals: Best of 5 sets
Semi-Finals: Best of 7 sets
Final: Best of 9 sets
Daryl Gurney will be hoping to replicate his stunning 2017 success and the world No 3 is set to be one of three former champions in the field – alongside Van Gerwen and two-time winner James Wade.
‘The Machine’ has secured a career-equalling five PDC ranking titles in 2019 thus far, yet the nine-time major winner has suffered four consecutive first-round defeats on Irish soil since reaching the final in 2015.
Gary Anderson continues his return from injury, while World Matchplay finalist Michael Smith, last year’s finalist Wright and Grand Slam champion Gerwyn Price complete the eight seeds.
The top 16 players from the PDC Order of Merit will be joined in Dublin by 16 qualifiers from the one-year ProTour Order of Merit, with just two events remaining before the cut-off.
Phil Taylor – 11-time champion (1998, 1999, 2000, 2002, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2008, 2009, 2011, 2013)
Michael van Gerwen – Four-time champion (2012, 2014, 2016, 2018)
James Wade – Two-time champion (2007, 2010)
Alan Warriner-Little – 2001 winner
Colin Lloyd – 2004 winner
Robert Thornton – 2015 winner
Daryl Gurney – 2017 winner
Three-time BDO world champion Glen Durrant will headline the list of debutants in 2019, which also includes former World Masters champion Krzysztof Ratajski and Czech Darts Open winner Jamie Hughes.
Two-time World Youth champion Dimitri Van den Bergh is also in line to make his Dublin bow as one of the 16 provisional Pro Tour qualifiers, although the Belgian’s qualification is not yet secure.
It’s not long to wait until darts is back on Daily Week Sports, the World Grand Prix gets under way on Sunday, October 6 at Dublin’s Citywest Arena and seven days of coverage continues until the final on Saturday, October 12.