The inaugural Sydney Darts Exhibition Cup will take place over the weekend of November 14/15 in the Grand Ballroom at 99 On York. The event – organised by Sydney Darts Club – brings together the top players from Sydney’s darts leagues, groups and associations to challenge current PDC world No. 22 Jamie ‘Jabba’ Caven.
The opening night sees ten local players take their turn to line up at the oche and attempt to score an upset win over Caven. At the end of the night the four players with the best results will qualify for the finals to be held the following day.
The top four local qualifiers from day one will then face off with Caven on day two, after which the two players with the best results will go head to head in a semi-final. The winner of that match will take on Caven one last time in the Grand Final.
Jamie Caven is the current PDC world number 22 and a seven-time winner on the Pro-Tour. This is despite losing sight in his right eye at an early age, and the removal of his pancreas at the age of 20 meaning he requires four daily injections of insulin for the rest of his life. The need for these injections gave Jamie his darts nickname ‘Jabba’.
Caven has reached the last 32 at the World Championships on four occasions, including each of the past two years. He has also reached the Quarter Finals three times at other PDC Premier Events, as well as the semi-finals of the 2012 Championship League. He led 4-3 in that semi-final against Australia’s Simon Whitlock before slipping to a 6-4 defeat.
Caven has a habit of taking it all the way with the biggest names in darts. At the last two World Championship’s he has suffered a 3-4 loss to Raymond Van Barneveld, while at the 2014 Austrian Open he defeated Terry Jenkins, Stephen Bunting, Peter Wright and the legendary Phil ‘The Power’ Taylor on his way to the semi-finals.
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In the lead up to the event Jamie Caven spoke exclusively with Sydney Sports Events writer Kevin Moody:-
Jamie, great to hear you will be coming down to Sydney for the Exhibition Cup. How much are you looking forward to visiting the harbour city?
Both myself and Debbie are very much looking forward to it. We’ve both wanted to come to Australia for the last few years, with Sydney being the heart of where we want to visit, so it works out great for us.
Over two nights you will play fifteen matches against local opponents, how much of a challenge will it be to maintain your level over the course of the event?
Well, to be honest I know there are some great players there, including Russell Stewart and Mitch Clegg who have both been World Championship competitors, so they have pedigree. I am prepared for a tough couple of days, and I will try to beat everybody.
During your career you have had some notable victories, including seven wins on the PDC Pro Tour. What would be the highlight of your career so far?
I guess it has to be the double header weekend, where I won both events in Wigan – as there have only been about 10 different players to ever do it. Saying that, in the events I have won, I have beaten Michael van Gerwen in a final in Canada and Adrian Lewis in the final in Derby.
In each of the past two World Championships you have been narrowly beaten by Raymond van Barneveld. How confident are you of being able to make that extra step?
I’m very confident. The last two were defeats both to RVB – both 3-4. However, I’m very optimistic I can have a very good run this time around, although the opposition gets tougher each year.
Over the years you’ve had some great battles with Australia’s top ranked PDC player Simon Whitlock, are you expecting to encounter other fierce competitors when you arrive in Sydney?
Certainly, as I said previously – there seems to be a hot bed of talent down under, and I know how you guys like to get one over us poms!
Sydney darts fans should get to York on 99 for the opportunity to catch a top PDC star in action against the best of our local talent. Tickets will be available on the door, and can also be pre-purchased via the link below.