Antony back in charge
Referee called up to World Championships
Darts ref Antony Dundas is set for a magnificent seven at this year’s BDO World Championships – and he couldn’t be happier.
The darts tournament gets underway at the legendary Lakeside venue at the start of January, and for the seventh year in a row King’s Park man Antony will be one of the officials.
He has previously taken charge of three world championship finals at the competition but says that taking charge of any match at the Lakeside is a privilege.
Antony told the Reformer: “I can’t wait because the Lakeside is still the home of world darts and it’s always special to referee there.
“I always say it’s like appearing at Hampden or Wembley for football, because the history makes it special.”
However Antony’s refereering journey was due to a fluke more than anything else.
He admitted: “I used to watch the Lakeside when I was younger because my dad is a big darts fan.
“I fancied playing there sometime, but I didn’t think I’d be there as a ref.
“I ended up refereeing a youth tournament the year after I’d won it as I was too old to play in it again.
“And that’s how it started. I was about 20 and had just started to referee matches around the county. I got a call in 2012 to referee at the Scottish Open and it went from there.”
The 32-year-old believes the BDO tournament, which gets underway January 6, will offer top-notch darts, even if it doesn’t have the financial muscle of the rival PDC organisation.
He added: “There’s always a good quality of play in the BDO, we’re the grassroots of the sport.
“A new board has taken over, we have got new TV deals for the three major tournaments and hopefully it’ll be a new era.”
However Antony reckons there is one problem with the explosion in popularity of darts.
A recent incident at the PDC’s World Championships saw Dutch star Michael Von Gerwin hit with a drink as he made his entrance.
And Antony reckons that fans crossing the line needs to be cracked down on.
He added: “That is the only problem with how big darts has become, that you get crowds that are only wanting to drink there.
“I bet you could ask some of them the scores after they leave and they wouldn’t know.
“There is no place for what happened to Michael Von Gerwin in darts but thankfully it’s only a minority of fans that behave like that.”
The BDO World Championships take place from January 6, and will be aired on Quest and Eurosport.
Man in the middle Ref Antony Dundas