Premier League Darts: Stephen Bunting, Kim Huybrechts and James Wade included
Last Updated: 05/01/15 11:09am
Stephen Bunting, Kim Huybrechts and James Wade will participate in the 2015 Betway Premier League Darts, it has been confirmed.
The tournament brings together ten superstars of the sport as they compete over 16 weeks for the prestigious title, which was won in 2014 by Raymond van Barneveld.
Lakeside champion Bunting has enjoyed a brilliant first year on the PDC circuit and tested Van Barneveld at the World Championship before the veteran Dutchman lauded the St. Helens thrower’s worthiness.
Belgian ace Huybrechts will compete for the first time after his impressive emergence during 2014, with his achievements including a nine-darter during a win over Michael van Gerwen in the Grand Slam of Darts.
Wade, the 2009 Premier League champion, will return this year after winning The Masters and reaching the World Grand Prix final.
Competition for places
The new trio are joined by the world's top four players who qualified by right alongside six Wildcard selections, who are chosen by the PDC and Sky Sports, the tournament's host broadcaster.
World number one and 2013 Premier League champion Michael van Gerwen and the six-time Premier League winner Phil Taylor head the world's top four, alongside 2011 Premier League champion Gary Anderson and two-time World Champion Adrian Lewis.
Dutch star van Barneveld, a five-time World Champion, heads the list of Wildcards as the defending champion as the tournament celebrates its 11th season. Peter Wright and Dave Chisnall both retain their places for a second season of Premier League Darts, due to begin on February 5.
"The competition for places in the Betway Premier League Darts has been greater than ever this year, and there was a huge amount of deliberation over a host of players for selection," said PDC Chairman Barry Hearn.
Over 80,000 tickets have already been sold for the Betway Premier League Darts season, with full ticket information available at www.pdc.tv/tickets.
Betway Premier League Darts Field
PDC Order of Merit Top Four: Michael van Gerwen (1), Phil Taylor (2), Gary Anderson (3), Adrian Lewis (4)
Wildcard Selections (in ranking order): Peter Wright (5), James Wade (6), Dave Chisnall (9), Raymond van Barneveld (10), Kim Huybrechts (17), Stephen Bunting (24)
NB: The fixtures for the Betway Premier League Darts will be confirmed during January at www.pdc.tv.