• Darts

Wright and Chisnall get Premier League places

ESPN staff
January 1, 2014 « Marvellous Van Gerwen secures first world title | Chartbeat test »
Peter Wright enjoyed a remarkable run at the PDC World Championsihp © PA Photos
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Peter Wright and Dave Chisnall will both make their Premier League debuts in 2014 after PDC chairman Barry Hearn confirmed the line-up following the conclusion of the World Championship final at Alexandra Palace.

Wright enjoyed a remarkable run at Ally Pally, narrowly losing 7-4 to Michael van Gerwen to claim the runner-up spot.

However, 'Snakebite' has been rewarded for his terrific form throughout 2013 while Chisnall also has the same honour following his rise into the world's top five.

New world champion Van Gerwen, who beat Phil Taylor for the Premier League crown in 2012, will begin the defence of his title at Liverpool's Echo Arena on February 6.

The first of many for Mighty Mike?

Michael van Gerwen beat Peter Wright 7-4 in the PDC World Championship final © PA Photos

Taylor will make his return to the 16-week tournament alongside Adrian Lewis, Simon Whitlock, Raymond van Barneveld, Robert Thornton, Wes Newton and Gary Anderson in the event. James Wade and Andy Hamilton both miss out, having competed last year.

"This is a fantastic line-up for the 2014 Premier League Darts and I congratulate Peter Wright and Dave Chisnall on their selection, which is fully deserved after their brilliant years," Hearn said. "The Premier League Darts has always guaranteed excitement, shocks and world-class darts, and this line-up of ten players is sure to provide that by the bucket-load.

"We'll be welcoming record crowds for the Premier League Darts and also visiting the SSE Hydro in Glasgow and Leeds' First Direct Arena for the first time in what promises to be a memorable four months.

"There is always going to be debate and discussion over which players are included but the wildcards chosen both by ourselves [the PDC] and Sky Sports provide a great mix of quality, experience and personalities.

"Many more players came into consideration due to the incredibly high standard now on the PDC circuit, particularly Andy Hamilton and Kim Huybrechts, as well as James Wade.

"James has enjoyed six great years in Premier League Darts and was a worthy champion in 2009, however this year we believe that he would benefit from a break from the pressures and travel of competing in the tournament to continue his treatment for his well-documented health issues."

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