It is with great regret that the WDF have to announce that the WDF World Masters, planned to be held for the first time in Assen, the Netherlands in December 2021 is to be postponed for 12 months.
With COVID-19 restrictions still in place for many WDF member nations including our hosts the Netherlands, the decision has been made by the WDF Executive to delay the event for another year.
“During these difficult times, the WDF Promotions team, with the help of the NDB, have made every effort to facilitate this new tournament for the benefit of our nations and their players,” said WDF President Bill Hatter.
“But for an event on the scale of the WDF World Masters to be truly viable, it needs to be accessible to the majority of our 72 member countries. With just three months to go until the event and different restrictions in place for travelling worldwide, and restrictions around events being held in the Netherlands, we have been left with no option but to cancel the World Masters event for 2021.”
The WDF have been working closely with the NDB to provide the best possible tournament experience for every player that qualifies for the World Masters. With the support of the Bonte Wever Hotel in Assen we remain hopeful of being able to host the WDF-ranked World Open and the Lakeside World Championship playoffs on 4-5 December 2021 at the same venue. Finalised plans around these two tournaments will be confirmed in due course.
It is confirmed that the WDF World Masters will take place between Thursday 8 and Sunday 11 December 2022 at the Bonte Wever in Assen, the Netherlands.
“Unfortunately, under the current government guidelines it is not allowable for the Netherlands to host multi-day events,” said NDB Director Paul Engelbertink.
“We hope that restrictions will be eased later in September, but by then it’s too late to expect so many nations from around the world to commit to sending their players to the World Masters. In support of the WDF, we are still looking into the possibility of hosting the World Open and Lakeside qualifiers for any individuals wishing to travel to Assen in December 2021 and we are already looking forward to hosting the World Masters next year and will do everything we can to make it a darts festival that is worth the wait!”
All players that have already qualified, or subsequently qualify for the World Masters in 2021 under the current criteria, will have their invitations deferred to 2022.
The only minor change to the criteria issued for 2021 is that there will be no provisional rankings cut off for World Masters qualification on Monday 4 October, as previously stated.
The World Masters rankings table will be finalised on Monday 29 November and a full list of qualifiers will be published for 2021 (deferred to 2022).
The new WDF world rankings table and any new criteria for the 2022 World Masters will be released in December 2021.
The World Paradarts Masters, which was very much part of our plans in Assen has also been postponed. Please visit https://www.worldparadarts.com/ for further information.
“Having ensured that everything was in place both commercially and logistically for the 2021 World Masters, it is extremely frustrating for all concerned that we are unable to run the event as planned in December due to ongoing restrictions,” said WDF Chief Development Officer Richard Ashdown.
“The support of the WDF member nations has been integral to our progress and our objectives remain for the continued development of the ranking system and the promotion of the major tournaments. We look forward to what is sure to be a spectacular return to Lakeside for the WDF World Championships in January, followed by what we all hope will be a full calendar year of ranking events worldwide, leading up to the new World Masters in December 2022.”