The WDF tour made its first of four scheduled stops in Hungary in 2024 this past weekend, with Sybren Gijbels and Jitka Císařová winning the top titles at the inaugural WDF Lakitelek Masters.
Gijbels downs Rucska to claim maiden WDF title
Sybren Gijbels has been growing into WDF competition in recent months, reaching a final in Serbia in November 2023 and then reaching the Dutch Open quarter-finals at the start of February.
In Budapest, Gijbels converted those promising results into a first WDF title and 45 key ranking points that have moved him into a provisional 2024 WDF World Championship place.
The Belgian was third seed and that set up a quarter-final meeting with 2023 Lakeside qualifier Gabor Takacs. Gijbels won that 4-2 and followed up that victory by winning four legs on the spin to defeat Czechia’s Michal Smejda 4-1 in the semi-finals with a 90.12 average.
Facing Gijbels in the final was Jozsef Rucska, a Pairs Bronze medallist at last year’s WDF World Cup. The title decider was a low-quality affair, with both players really struggling on the outer ring, but it was Gijbels that was marginally more effective, eventually winning 5-1.
Císařová moves closer to Lakeside contention with fifth WDF title
Jitka Císařová and Veronika Ihasz have been in fierce competition over recent years for top spot in the WDF Eastern Europe rankings, with Hungary’s Ihasz coming out on top to qualify for Lakeside in 2022 and 2023.
Ihasz currently leads in the way in 2024 but Císařová slashed her lead by claiming her fifth WDF ranking title in the Lakitelek Masters.
Císařová faced Hungarian international Alexandra Bogar in the final. Bogar started off strong, taking the opening leg in 17 darts before Císařová levelled the scores with a 19-darter.
The standard dipped a bit from there but two breaks of throw proved crucial for Císařová, the first helping her establish a 3-1 lead and then the second sealing her a 5-2 victory with a 68.45 average.
Double joy for Hungary in Youth events
Although they didn’t win either of the senior Lakitelek Masters titles, Hungary did have some success to celebrate in the Boys and Girls events.
In the Boys Masters, Daniel Csoka threw two 180s in a narrow 4-3 final victory over Gergo Petracs. The Girls Masters title went the way of Krisztina Turai, the 2023 WDF Girls World Championship runner-up taking top honours courtesy of a brace of 3-1 wins.