Full Name: Raymond van Barneveld
Date of Birth: April 20th, 1967
Place of Birth: The Hague
Photo of Raymond Van Barneveld by Chris Ibbotson
Raymond van Barneveld is a five-time World Darts Champion (four-time BDO World Champion and one-time PDC World Champion), the reigning champion of the William Hill Grand Slam of Darts, twice winner of the UK Open and a former winner of the Las Vegas Desert Classic. He has also won the World Masters and the World Darts Trophy twice, as well as the International Darts League on three occasions. He was the top ranked player in the world in 2008 and is currently ranked number eight.
Van Barneveld made his first World Championship appearance in 1991 and his first tournament semi-final at the Swiss Open in the same season. During the 1993 championship at Lakeside, Van Barneveld
hit a 170 checkout to lead John Lowe by 2 sets to 1 during their second round match, eventually losing 3-2. Van Barneveld reached his first World Final at the 1995 championships, losing to Richie Burnett.
He finally got his hands on the trophy in 1998 by gaining his revenge on Burnett in a thrilling encounter, 4-2 in the final set. He successfully his title the following year by defeating Ronnie Baxter, the first to do so since Eric Bristow.
Van Barneveld was beaten in the quarter-finals in 2001 and 2002 before winning his third World title in 2003 at the expense of Ritchie Davies. He lost in the semi-finals to Andy Fordham the following year but collected a fourth title in 2005, beating Martin Adams in the final. Hopes of equalling Bristow’s five BDO world titles ended with defeat in the final of 2006 by Jelle Klaasen. He won the Winmau World Masters in 2001 and 2005 and is a multiple winner of The World Darts Trophy and The International Darts League.
Van Barneveld announced his move from the BDO to the PDC in 2006 and within 12 months he had become World Champion and reached number 2 in the rankings. He was beaten in the semi-final of the Premier League by his compatriot Roland Scholten. Van Barneveld then won the International Darts League to claim his 11th BDO Grand Slam tournament. He collected his first major PDC title at the UK Open and was later beaten in the final of the 2006 Las Vegas Desert Classic.
Van Barneveld beat Taylor in the final of the 2007 PDC World Championship, fighting back from three sets down to claim a 7-6 victory. He then won the 2007 Masters of Darts tournament by beating Peter Manley 7-0 in sets in the final with a three dart average of 107. He also handed out a crushing 11-4 victory over Taylor in the quarter-final of the 2007 UK Open, successfully defending his title with a win over Van der Voort in the final. He also won the Las Vegas Desert Classic and has picked up eleven non-televised titles on the PDC Pro Tour.
He failed to win a major tournament in 2008 but was back to his best at the 2009 PDC World Championship, throwing a nine dart finish against Klaasen during his quarter-final victory.
Taylor gained handsome revenge for his 2007 thrashing by winning 7-1 in the final. The pair also fought out the final of the 2009 Las Vegas Desert Classic, Phil Taylor winning 13-11. In December 2009, he hit another nine-darter during the PDC World Championship, becoming the first player to hit two nine-dart finishes in the PDC World Championship. He was eventually beaten in the semi-finals by Simon Whitlock.
He made another nine-darter in the first round of the 2010 World Matchplay in Blackpool, eventually losing the final to Taylor 18-12. He was knocked out at the quarter-final stage of the 2011 World Championship and crashed out in the first round in 2012 to James Richardson. Van Barneveld won the UK Open Qualifier 5 by beating Andy Smith 6–3 in the final, hitting yet another nine-dart finish in his third round match against Michael Barnard. He also won Event 6 the following day, this time accounting for Ian White 6–2.
Van Barneveld won the European Tour Event 3 in Düsseldorf and reached the quarter-finals of the World Matchplay before losing to Kim Huybrechts. In November 2012, he won his first major tournament for over five years at the Grand Slam of Darts, beating fellow Dutchman Michael van Gerwen in the final. Van Barneveld reached the semi-finals of the 2013 World Championship and clashed again with Phil Taylor. He fought back from 1–5 down to win the next three sets before Taylor finally sealed the victory.