Sabah Times (3rd September 2014)
Over RM1 million awaits top darter
KOTA KINABALU: It could be a life-changing opportunity for local darters who take part at the upcoming PDC (Professional Darts Corporation) South Asia Qualifier (SAQ2014), which will be held at the Shangri-La Rasa Ria Resort from October 10 to 12.
They stand the chance to have a good go at earning a ticket to thePDC World Darts Championship, which will take place at the Alexandra Palace, London, UK in December this year.
The World Championship is offering a staggering total prize money of £1,050,000 (current rate about RM5,508,980) with the winner taking home £250,000 (RM1,311,660).
However, it is not going to be an easy ride for the local darters to earn that right, as the best darters from around the South Asian region will be here to fight for the sole ticket.
The past two seasons (2012/2013 and 2013/2014) champion, Mohd Latif bin Sapup, a Malaysian, will also be around, as he bids to make his third appearance at the World Championship.
He will be among the 600 darters from 32 countries expected to take part in the three-day championship at Shangri-La Rasa Ria Resort.
The countries are Malaysia, Thailand, Singapore, the Philippines, Vietnam, Laos, Cambodia, Myanmar, Indonesia, Brunei, Bangladesh, Sri Lanka, India, Iran, Nepal, Pakistan, Bhutan, UAE, Afghanistan, Mongolia, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, Oman, Yemen, Iraq, Kuwait, Uzbekistan, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan, South Korea and Bahrain.
“This could be a life-changing opportunity for the darters from the regions, particularly Sabah,” said the legendary Phil Douglas Taylor, nicknamed The Power, at a press conference held at the Shangri-La Rasa Ria Resort here yesterday.
Phil, who is widely regarded as the best darts players of all time, having won more than 200 professional tournaments, including 80 major titles and an unprecedented record of 16 World Championships under his belt, is here to promote and launch the SAQ2014.
“The champion of the qualifier will qualify for the World Championship. And there are good players in Malaysia, the Philippines, Japan as well as Thailand and Korea.
For the record, the SAQ2014 will be organised with the collaboration of four professional bodies namely the PDC UK, Thailand Darts Association, Aristos E Sports and its local associate, Asia Premier Darts Corporation.
Phil’s manager Bob Glenn, Thailand’s Vichai Govindani, a PDC licence holder for Asia, Peter Choe, Radhi Abdul Jalil, both from Aristos E Sports and Dominic Andrew from APDC were also present at the function.
The SAQ2014 will start the team event where it offers RM10,000 prize money for the winners, while on the second day will be the doubles event and the open singles event where winners of each category will receive RM5,000 and RM2,000 respectively.
The winners of the doubles event will also make it into the World Championship.
The third and final day will be the main event, the SAQ singles. It offers USD$1,500 (about RM4,738.64 at current rate). The women’s singles, which offers RM1,000 prize money for the champion will also be played on the third day.