Five reasons to stop bashing the BDO

It's time to understand, accept, appreciate and enjoy the Lakeside World Championships for what it is.
It's time to understand, accept, appreciate and enjoy the Lakeside World Championships for what it is.

BDO-bashing has become a popular pastime on social media, but much of the criticism is undue according to Jaymes Monte. This is why he thinks we need to cut the organisation some slack...

"Every one of the 2015 PDC World Championship quarter-finalists - Phil Taylor, Gary Anderson, Raymond van Barneveld, Michael van Gerwen, Robert Thornton, Peter Wright, Vincent van der Voort and Stephen Bunting - began their careers in the BDO."

1. Amateur v Professional
Because the BDO World Championships immediately follows the PDC World Championships onlookers inevitably begin comparing the two. This needs to stop, as it is simply unrealistic to do so. The British Darts Organisation (BDO) is an organisation for amateur players who, in most cases, combine playing darts with a full-time job, while the Professional Darts Corporation (PDC), as the name suggests, is for players who dedicate their working life to solely playing the game of darts - or at least the top players do so.

Would you watch, for example, Forest Green take on Eastleigh in the Conference and then compare the quality on show there to a game between Chelsea and Manchester City in the Premier League? Absolutely not. So we shouldn't do it in darts either.


2. It's all in the name
The BDO could certainly help themselves a little help here by renaming the BDO World Championships to something like the 'Lakeside Championships' or the 'BDO Championships'. Having two 'world champions' in any sport doesn't make sense and although the BDO World Championships is the original 'world championships' maybe it's time to swallow some pride for the good of the game.

That said; it's only a name. We've all come to terms with the fact that football's Champions League doesn't consist only of 'champions', and therefore we should also realise that the BDO World Championships is not about crowning a 'world champion', but is instead about celebrating the amateur game.


3. It's really not that bad
Comparing averages in the Preliminary Round of the BDO World Championships with those in the quarter-finals of the PDC World Championship - as one article in a national newspaper did - is a ridiculously pointless exercise; see point 1 above.

Yes, the BDO doesn't have the strength in depth of its PDC counterpart, but those involved in the latter stages at Lakeside often produce darts comparable with those at Ally Pally.

Stephen Bunting's success in his debut year in the PDC is testament to the quality that the BDO can produce, while Scott Waites won the Grand Slam of Darts beating Adrian Lewis, Raymond van Barneveld and James Wade, among others, as recently as 2010.


4. Stars must be born
Although the PDC has now set up a very fruitful and prosperous Youth Tour that will eventually go on to produce future stars of the game, for the last 20 years, and a good few more to come, the BDO has supplied the PDC with almost all of its big names.

Every one of the 2015 PDC World Championship quarter-finalists - Phil Taylor, Gary Anderson, Raymond van Barneveld, Michael van Gerwen, Robert Thornton, Peter Wright, Vincent van der Voort and Stephen Bunting - began their careers in the BDO. As did every PDC World Championship finalist in its 22-year existence.


5. Think you can do better?
BDO-bashing on social media typically comes with an affix along the lines of "I've seen better down my local" or "I could do better myself". The short response is; no you haven't, or, no you can't.

But if you're not happy with that, the beauty of the BDO and its amateur status is that it is not an exclusive club and doesn't require you to make a big life decision to dedicate your life, or at least a significant portion of it, to the sport. So if you think you're good enough to play on the Lakeside stage go and play in the BDO Regional Ranking events, accumulate points, climb up the BDO rankings and get yourself on that Lakeside stage. And if you're not willing to do that, at least respect those that do put in the hard miles.

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