The World Cup of Darts was supposed to start in mid-June, but the ongoing Coronavirus situation has seemingly halted our dreams of watching what is always one of the year’s most entertaining tournaments.
It’s short format creates the opportunity of massive upsets each and every year, and colourful characters from across the world make for brilliant viewing. The likes of John Norman Jr with his incredibly bullish celebrations or Wenge Xie and his famous 171 against England are some of the most entertaining players I’ve ever seen on Sky Sports, and we only really get to see them at this event.
Away from all the fun of the World Cup, there is serious business to attend to when it comes to lifting the prestigious trophy, and to nobody’s surprise the tournament has been dominated by two nations.
England and The Netherlands have won eight of the nine competitions, while last year Scotland became the third country to get their hands on the trophy.
That isn’t to say their hasn’t been a gluttony of talent coming from across the globe, and today we’re going to look at the most talented nation to never win the World Cup.
A look at the finals over the past nine years would have you believe that Wales are the best team to never win darts’ equivalent of the Jules Rimet trophy, and there certainly is a case to make there.
Mark Webster and Barrie Bates made the final of the first ever competition, losing to Raymond van Barneveld and Co Stompe, while Webster teamed up with Gerwyn Price in a losing effort in the 2017 final.
Unfortunately, Wales have suffered from a bad case of timing, 2009 was much too early for The Iceman to be a PDC player, while Mark Webster was sadly past his best by 2017, failing to get past the fourth round in any major, and even then the only time he made it that far was during the UK Open.
Australia are the team that have come closest to getting their name on the roll of honour, with both Paul Nicholson and Simon Whitlock missing match darts back in 2012.
Whitlock and Nicholson would go on to make another semi-final in 2013, while The Wizard would once again make the semis in 2017 with a new partner in the shape of Kyle Anderson.
Australia have certainly produced some brilliant darting talent over the years, and they came within a whisker of being World Cup winners, so there would be a fair argument to make that they’re the best team to never win this tournament.
However, despite the fact that he did great things for Australian darts, and he deserves great credit for developing the game down under, Paul Nicholson remains one of the most Geordie men I have ever seen in my life, therefore, it’s hard to hand Australia this title.
Away from Wales and Australia, the team of Steve Lennon and Willie O’Connor made the final last year, with a run of fantastic performances, while there are other nations set up for great runs in the future.
The German duo of Max Hopp and Martin Schindler should be able to have a real go at this in a few years time, while Keane Barry could be the man to take Ireland one step further once his game develops.
However, this article was made to commemorate one classic World Cup team, and they are, in our opinion, the best pair to never win this competition.
Kim and Ronny Huybrechts are undoubtedly the best pair of brothers to ever step foot on a PDC stage, and while they have only ever made one final, two semi-final appearances and a string of classic performances earn them this honour.
The Belgians play their best stuff when they’re together, whether that’s due to have the support of a sibling, or wanting to one up your brother doesn’t really matter, the facts are that Kim and Ronny save their best stuff for when they’re wearing their Belgian colours.
The highest average we’ve ever seen in this competition was thrown by the younger Huybrechts as Kim put up a massive 121.97 in 2017 against Paul Lim, and the man he knocked off top spot was his big brother who threw an incredible 115.62 average just a few days earlier in a game against Greece.
Dimitri van den Bergh may be the future of Belgian darts, and they could win a World Cup in the near future if he fulfils his potential, but the Huybrechts brothers are World Cup legends, and surely the best to never stand victorious in this tournament.