Although the hey-day of darts was definitely the 1980s when the pastime's best players such as Eric Bristow, Jocky Wilson and Bobby George were celebrities in their own right, there is still plenty of interest in 'arrow chucking' in the modern age. The two versions of the world championship – the PDC (Professional Darts Corporation) and the BDO (British Darts Organisation) – are still broadcast on national television and attract millions of viewers.
Darts is a popular pastime in all regions of the UK, some areas of Europe and North America. To this end, that means there's usually a darts tournament going on some place on the globe, which is ideal if you've a passion for betting on darts. Step up to the oche and read all you need to know about darts betting.
The first world professional darts championship was held as recently as 1978, and was won by Leighton Rees. The most successful player remains 'The Crafty Cockney' Eric Bristow with five wins. In 1994 a group of players – unhappy with how darts was being run by its organisers – split off to form their own championship. This tournament has been dominated by the greatest darts player of all time – Phil 'The Power' Taylor. Taylor has won the title fourteen times, including a consecutive run of eight between 1995 and 2002. Taylor also appeared in fourteen consecutive finals.
Aside from the two world championships there are several other important tournaments in the annual darts calendar. These include the UK Open, the Darts Premier League, the Players Championship, the World Grand Prix and the Masters. There are a huge number of darts players all around the globe, meaning that for each of the afore-mentioned tournaments there are qualifying tournaments too.
Countries where darts is popular also of course run their own national tournaments. This covers all the home nations, the Netherlands, Germany, Norway, Sweden, Finland, Denmark, the United States and Canada. TV coverage of darts is excellent, with all the leading tournaments receiving coverage on SkySports, BTSport and lesser-known satellite channels.
All the leading sports books will offer darts betting on all major and most minor tournaments, including down to qualifying tournaments.
The easiest way to bet – as with any sport – is outright betting. You can bet on players to win tournaments, and you can bet on players to win individual matches.
As darts is very much a game of numbers (each individual throw can score anything from zero to the magic one hundred and eighty) there are plenty of inventive markets you can bet on when it comes to darts, and you can really make something of a killing if you know your numbers, your darts and your darts players.
For each match and tournament you will find markets where you can wager on which player will hit the most 180s, for example. For each match you will be able to wager upon the correct set score (the number of sets per match in darts varies, but typically a set is made up of five legs, first to three wins – early rounds of tournaments usually only have three sets, but finals can go up to seven), the total sets or legs played and the correct score in any set.
The ultimate performance in darts is the nine-dart-finish – equivalent to snooker's maximum break of 147. This is where a player scores two 180s on his first two visits to the oche, and then 141 on his third (usually treble twenty, treble nineteen and double twelve), although there are actually nearly four thousand possible ways a player can achieve a nine dart finish. You can bet on a player achieving a nine-dart finish during a specific game, or a tournament, or any tournament containing a nine-dart finish.
For any specific darts leg the ultimate 'check out' is one hundred and seventy. This is where a player leaves himself one hundred and seventy for his final step up to the oche, and scores two treble twenties and a bullseye. The most famous 'maxiumum check out' was performed by Ted Hankey to end the 2000 BDO World Championship. Just as you can bet on a player (or any player) achieving a nine-dart finish, you can also bet on the likelihood of a maximum check-out.
For some reason, Stoke-on-Trent in the UK seems to be the hotbed of champion darts players. Phil Taylor, Ted Hankey, Andy Hamilton, Ian White and Adrian Lewis were all born in the town, which probably goes some way to explaining why another Stoke-on-Trent legend – the sports betting site Bet365 - is probably the best in the business for sports betting on darts.
No other site has such comprehensive coverage of darts as Bet365. ALL major and the vast majority of minor tournaments, world-wide, are covered, with plenty of inventive markets available too. Watch out for special promotions around the time of the two big world championships (traditionally held at the end and the beginning of each year).
Ladbrokes is another site with a high regard for the sport of darts – between 2002 and 2014 Ladbrokes sponsored the PDC World Darts Championship, and in 2016 agreed to become the principle sponsors of the PDC World Series of Darts. Their darts coverage is almost as good as Bet365's with all major darts events covered, and occasional exclusive darts-related promotions. Watch out especially for the site's exclusive odds-boosts, which give you the chance of earning more cash if your darting predictions are correct.
Your chances of hitting a maximum are increased when you wager on darts if you stick to only the best online sports betting sites. We here at LatestBettingSites are always available to make sure you're informed about betting on darts, and which sites are likely to offer the best promotions when it comes to the 'Game of Arrows'.
Every week UK bookmakers share unique darts offers to give you the chance to bank more cash on your wagers. Stay up to speed with all the latest deals in our betting offers section.