2014 Ladbrokes World Darts Championships begins on Dec 13th

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The qualifiers are over and the final field is complete for the 2014 Ladbrokes World Darts Championship, with the first-round action getting underway on December 13th at London’s Alexandra Palace.

Some 64 players will be in first-round action, with the 32 players to lead the PDC rankings filling seeded spots, with the other places made up of qualifiers from the ProTour Order of Merit, European Order of Merit and other overseas events.

Matt Smith has claimed the final spot among the definite first-round starters after his victory in a PDPA qualifier event in Barnsley, with runner-up Ian Moss now one of eight players looking to reach the first round through preliminary-round qualifiers at Alexandra Palace.

The draw for the first-round action will be made on December 2nd, with the tournament winner set to scoop £250,000 in prize money.

Phil Taylor is the early 4/5 favourite to win the Ladbrokes World Darts Championship for a 15th time and has already taken the World Matchplay, World Grand Prix, Championship of Darts, Masters and Grand Slam of Darts titles in the last six months.

He will be the obvious one to avoid in the draw for the lesser names, although some potential banana skins lurk among the non-seeded players, including Jelle Klaasen Mark Dudbridge and exciting young pair Joe Cullen and Max Hopp.

With the seeded players already in their draw brackets, the early impression is that Taylor looks to have avoided many of his chief rivals in his half of the draw.

After Taylor in the Ladbrokes World Darts Championships tournament winner betting are Adrian Lewis (5/1), Michael van Gerwen (6/1), James Wade (22/1) and Raymond van Barneveld (25/1), but this quartet are all in the bottom section of the draw.

All Odds and Markets are correct as of the date of publishing.

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Craig Kemp

Craig has written for Ladbrokes since the 2010 World Cup, having previously gained a Media & Sports Journalism degree and contributed to publications including the Racing Post. His main areas of interest are horse racing and UFC, but he is also an avid X Factor gambler and likes nothing more than indulging in a spot of Hip Hop Karaoke.