The WDF World Masters cancelled for 2023

After much speculation, the 2023 WDF World Masters will not take palce in a huge blow to the WDF and all of their players.

The 2022 tournament was hosted in Assen, The Netherlands and appeared to be a success, with plenty of positive feedback from players and officials as one of the sport’s oldest major took place outside of the UK for the first time.

However, the WDF have been unable to secure long-term commercial partners and funding for the 2023 event.

Many players have travelled and spent thousands of pounds chasing ranking points to qualify for the WDF’s second biggest major, and this news will come as a bitter pill to swallow.

In a statement that was released on Monday evening to their players and members.

The WDF World Masters cancelled for 2023
The WDF World Masters cancelled for 2023 (Bas van den Berk/NDB)

Nick Rolls, Secretary-General of the WDF, said: “It’s a huge disappointment that we haven’t been able to get everything signed off to make the World Masters a reality in 2023 because we know how much all of our players enjoyed it last year.

“Following the enforced absences throughout the pandemic, our priority in 2022 was making sure that the World Championship and World Masters ran as advertised. However, in order for us to continue delivering tournaments befitting of the heritage, we had to adopt more strategic, long-term planning. One-year deals are all well and good but when they end, the uncertainty returns the following year.

“To give our players the clarity they deserve, we needed to make sure that we had multi-year deals in place for venues, dates and sponsors. Doing this means that our players know what they’re playing for and our member nations know what the ranking events they put on are building towards. We’ve done that with Lakeside and the World Championship by moving it to December, and the next step was doing that with the World Masters.

“We also wanted to improve our communication with players and that meant setting firm decision deadlines and not just living in a world where we’re comfortable continually kicking the can down the road. To that end we informed people in May of our progress and by doing so kept ourselves accountable as those commercial conversations continued.

“While some of the conversations have already reached a positive conclusion, not all were settled before the June deadline we set ourselves. As such, we are now using 2023 as a transition year as we continue to reshape our event schedule. To that effect, our focus switches to continuing these commercial conversations with a view to getting this great, global tournament back on the calendar in 2024 and beyond. We also look ahead to our return to Lakeside this December, tickets for which have been selling incredibly well so far.”