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PDC Darts World Matchplay Free Bets

The darts World Matchplay - held in July every year - is widely regarded as the second biggest tournament on the PDC calendar after the World Championship and as such provides nearly as much tension, excitement and high-quality darts as the Alexandra Palace event.

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The best ways to maximise your free World Matchplay bet

With the World Matchplay regularly sponsored by bookmakers, most recently Bet Victor, there are always plenty of options for the punter before and during the event. The obvious option is the winner of the tournament and that is always the one that attracts the most money but there is ample opportunity to be more creative with your World Matchplay free bet if you wish.

With very few men ever having lifted the Matchplay trophy there is often an option to bet on whether it will be a first time champion or someone having their name etched on it again. Phil 'The Power' Taylor won this title an amazing 16 times but has retired now but emotionally won the title in 2017, his last year on the circuit.

Winning nationality is also an interesting market as there are actually very few options usually in the big tournaments. The big two are English and Dutch and it is very rare that a major winner comes from a nation that is not one of these two. However Gary Anderson has shown in recent years that he's capable of winning the very biggest tournaments so backing Scotland could also prove fruitful.

Who will hit the most 180s over the tournament is also a popular bet but needs to be carefully chosen. Some players are much better known for hitting maximums than others but if they go out early then it is going to be no good to you at all.

The men that attract most bets in this market tend to be the likes of Michael van Gerwen and Gary Anderson who routinely get to the latter stages of tournaments and bang in plenty of 180s along the way. Phil Taylor, for example, is a player who obviously reaches plenty of finals but is not known for filling up the treble 20 bed and should probably be avoided.

One of the more contentious markets when betting for free on the World Matchplay is whether the fabled 9-darter will be hit during a tournament. The World Matchplay has seen some famous 9-darters hit over the years by the likes of Taylor, van Gerwen, Raymond van Barneveld and Wes Newton but despite this it remains a very rare event. Every year people get excited about the likelihood of a 9-darter but it is usually worth backing against this feat rather than for it.

How do I claim my World Matchplay free bet?

As mentioned the Matchplay is a popular event for bookmakers to sponsor so there is every chance for you to sign up to either the tournament sponsor or another bookie of your choosing. Simply click on the link for a bookmaker on the right of this page which will take you over to their homepage.

Once at the bookmaker’s homepage simply follow the registration process that is set out for you and should only take a couple of minutes.

Once registered and having deposited some funds your free bet will be available to you so find darts in the sportsbook, head to the World Matchplay tab and pick the market of your choice. Clicking on the odds by your preferred market will put the selection into the betting slip and you are good to go.

What other markets can I bet on?

The usual darts betting markets are there when you bet for free on the World Matchplay. Bookies will have a lot of markets open and plenty of in-play options for you to bet on during July.

All the markets you'd expect to see will be there; including overall winner; individual match odds as well as:

  • Most bullseyes
  • Most 180s
  • Highest check-out
  • Nine dart finishes?
  • 170 check-out
  • Winning nationality
  • To reach the final/semi-final
  • Tournament whitewash
  • And more!


Tell me more about World Matchplay darts

Well, the clue is in the name; the event it is played in a matchplay format rather than the set format that is used at the World Championship or the World Grand Prix in Dublin. As the rounds go on the legs required for victory increase until it is a race to 18 in the final. 

The World Matchplay has been held at the Winter Gardens in Blackpool since its inception all the way back in 1994 when the PDC (then known as the WDC) was formed. The format has changed very little since that first event with 32 players entering at the first round and going through a straight knockout competition until a winner is crowned.

Nowadays those 32 men are the top 16 in the PDC Order of Merit joined by the top 32 for that year on the Pro Tour Order of Merit which takes into account all the floor tournaments and the European Tour events.

Part of the added excitement of the Matchplay is that you must win by two clear legs so it is not as simple as a race to the required number, but it can go all the way to a sudden death play-off if a match continues for too long. Twice the Matchplay has gone past its allotted number of legs in the final, in 1998 and 1999 when Rod Harrington triumphed 19-17 over Ronnie Baxter and Peter Manley.

The Blackpool event has been dominated by one man over the years, as have most PDC tournaments, and that is Phil Taylor who between 1994 and 2013 won an incredible 14 Matchplay titles. One of the greatest moments in his illustrious career came in the 2008 final when he beat the then reigning champion James Wade 18-9 averaging a massive 109.47. However in recent years the Power's strangle-hold over the sport has begun to wain and Michael van Gerwen has established himself as the new dominant force.

The Winter Gardens stage has also been the scene of heartache for a number of players with a trio of men have lost multiple finals in the famous competition. Dennis Priestley famously got to the first three finals but lost them all, John Part has twice lost close showpiece events and although Wade has won it once he has been defeated in four other finals.

Recent Winners

  • 2018 - Gary Anderson
  • 2017-  Phil Taylor
  • 2016-  Michael van Gerwen
  • 2015 - Michael van Gerwen
  • 2008-14 Phil Taylor

We've sort of been here before...

The BDO held an unrelated, but similar, event to the World Matchplay in the 1980s - called the MFI World Matchplay Championship. It was sadly short-lived. The tournament stopped being a thing after the 1988 tournament due to ITV announcing that they were pulling out of darts coverage altogether. It ran for just five years - from 1984 to 1989 - and had been broadcast from The Fulcrum Centre in Slough. ITV broadcast the 1988 World Masters before leaving the BBC as the only broadcaster of darts from 1989 to 1991.

The MFI was historic, though, as it featured the first ever televised nine dart finish! On 13 October 1984 John Lowe won £102,000 for the perfect game of darts against Keith Deller. Unsurprisingly, Lowe went on to win the title that year.

Indeed, ITV didn't return to tournament darts coverage until they returned to matchplay coverage, and broadcasted the 4 WDC UK Matchplay tournaments from 1993 to 1996; tournaments which featured a quadro dart board, where each number from 1-20 also had a quadruple slot for 4 times the number.

ITV's regional channels did, however, cover events like the Lada UK Masters (Anglia Television) and the Samson Classic (Tyne-Tees Television).

The channel continued to improve it's darts coverage, though, and in 1999, broadcast the head to head showdown at Wembley between Phil Taylor and Raymond van Barneveld. ITV finally returned to tournament darts coverage with the Grand Slam of Darts tournament in 2007.

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