Darts is now a game that is recognised as a professional and competitive sport. This sport has a rich history that spans several centuries. Darts began as a simple pub game. Over time, it evolved into a global phenomenon with organised leagues, international competitions, and professional players revered for their skill and precision.
Due to the growing popularity of this sport, you may be unaware that darts are a popular sport when it comes to gambling. This is because online platforms like Limitless casino allow you to wager on the LIVE event and will provide you with a wide range of markets to gamble on. Nevertheless, in this article, we will explore the history of darts and their competitiveness.
The origins of darts come from France Darts, known in France as 'Fléchettes' (meaning 'small arrow'), consisted of a short dart thrown into a target with concentric rings. The original darts were made from wood. They had a metal point, and the flights were made from bird feathers, mainly turkey feathers.
Darts, as a game, made their way to England via the fairground, where punters would pay a small wager and try and hit a targeted area. It proved that so popular dartboard variations made their way into English pubs nationwide.
The early darts were made from cross-sections of softwood tree trunks or log ends, such as elm, to throw small darts at a circular target.
The game of darts gained popularity rapidly in the early 20th century, and although they were many regional dartboard variations, the board used in main competitions became standardised, known as the London Clock Dartboard, which consisted of a single, double, treble rings and inner and outer bullseye. Dartboards also became more durable with the introduction and use of compressed sisal. Unlike wooden dartboards, this plant fibre didn't require soaking in water. The boards lasted longer, and the introduction of colour variation could also be applied, unlike the wooden boards that were mainly died black.
Although controversy still surrounds who invented the numbering order on the London / Standard dartboard, as it is sometimes called, the numbers were undoubtingly arranged to award the good and penalise the poor throwers. To this day, the same number order is used with the highest score, 20, and the lowest, 1.
In the 1920s, organised darts competitions began to emerge with the formation of the National Darts Association in the United Kingdom. However, it was not until the 1930s that darts started to be played competitively on a larger scale. The News of the World (UK Newspaper) sponsored one of the first darts championships in 1927, and the game continued to gain popularity among players and spectators alike.
In the 1970s, darts received a significant boost when the BBC approached the then governing body, the British Darts Organisation (BDO), to organise and stage a World Darts Championships. Televised tournaments began to be broadcast from then regularly. Legendary players such as Eric Bristow, John Lowe and Phil Taylor became household names, and darts gained a loyal following of fans. The prize money for darts tournaments also increased, attracting more skilled players and elevating the game's status as a competitive sport.
Today, darts are a highly competitive sport, with professional players worldwide competing in various tournaments and championships. Numerous governing bodies, including the Professional Darts Corporation (PDC) and the World Darts Federation (WDC), regulate the sport along with the Darts Regulation Authority (DRA) and establish rules and standards.
In recent years, darts have gained recognition as a legitimate sport, with players competing for substantial prize money, endorsements, and sponsorships. Major darts tournaments, such as the PDC World Darts Championship and the WDF World Darts Championship, attract top players from across the globe, and the skill and competitiveness displayed are awe-inspiring.