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Klaasen Takes First PDC Title


Andrew Spillane (Destination Killarney ), Jelle Klassen (Winner of the John McEvoy Gold Dart Classic ), John McEvoy (Sponsor ) and Lorraine O’Shea (Gleneagle Hotel)
Photo source: DartsInIreland.com

Jelle Klaasen, Former Lakeside World Champion, won his first PDC title since moving over from the rival darts organisation the BDO. Klaasen defeated fellow contryman Vincent van der Voort 3-2 to take the John McEvoy Gold Dart Classic.

Klaasen became the youngest BDO World Champion in January 2006 by defeating Raymond van Barneveld, but after defecting to the PDC his darts winning began to decline.

The young Dutchman up until this point had not been able to reproduce his winning form, and had struggled to keep up in the PDC circuit.

The Gold Dart Classic this past weekend in Ireland put an end to Klaasen’s bad run of luck though, and now he is a champion in the PDC ranks as well.

Klaasen was down 2-0 to his fellow “young gun” van der Voort, but clawed his way back the the third set. Klaasen took the fourth set with a 76 checkout under pressure to bring the match to two all.

The final set was a tension filled match, but Klaasen finally took the final leg, set, and the match.

“I’m delighted,” said Klaasen. “This means so much to me because I’ve worked so hard this year.

“I’ve had a very bad year-and-a-half but I’m back playing well again now, which is thanks to joining the PDC in January.

“It’s been very hard for me. People in Holland said I couldn’t play darts any more and that I couldn’t get back to the top, but I’ve proven to myself, and hopefully to them, that I’m back again.

“It was hard playing someone I knew so well in the final, and when he went 2-0 up it made it even tougher for me. I didn’t start too well and missed a few doubles but I didn’t let him get any match darts so I’m very happy.”

Klaasen’s win also gives him another advantage: He now has moved up high enough in the Order of Merit to take part in the World Darts championship this December.

“This is the best part about this win,” he admitted. “I was eighth and now I’m probably first, so I’m delighted that I have earned a place at Alexandra Palace.”

Along the way to taking the title of the John McEvoy Gold Dart Classic, Klaasen defeated popular PDC players Kevin Painter, Peter Manley, Ronnie Baxter, and Colin Lloyd, so his entry in the PDC World Darts Championship should make for some exciting matching from the young Dutchman!

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