PRICE MEETS WHITLOCK IN 2023 NZ DARTS MASTERS OPENER
Gerwyn Price will start his bid to retain his New Zealand Darts Masters title against Simon Whitlock as the 2023 staging of the event starts on Friday August 4.
The first of a double-header of PDC World Series of Darts events Down under sees eight stars of the PDC take on eight Oceanic Representatives at the GLOBOX Arena in Hamilton on August 4-5.
Price, who suffered an early exit in July’s World Matchplay, will be looking to get back to winning ways at the GLOBOX Arena after tasting glory in Hamilton 12 months ago - but faces a tough start against Australian legend Whitlock.
Recently World Matchplay champion Nathan Aspinall faces New Zealand youngster Kayden Milne - who defeated Fallon Sherrock in the 2022 tournament and returns to the big stage ahead of his participation in the Winmau World Youth Championship later this month.
World Champion Michael Smith starts his campaign against DartPlayers Australia number one Darren Penhall, whilst Peter Wright - returning to New Zealand after missing last year’s tournament due to surgery - faces big-stage debutant Jonny Tata.
Australia’s Damon Heta, who was moved into the PDC representatives after Jonny Clayton’s late withdrawal, will face New Zealand's Darren Herewini - whose only previous World Series appearance came in the 2017 Auckland Darts Masters.
Rob Cross, a former Brisbane Darts Masters winner, returns to New Zealand for the first time since 2019, and will take on the experienced Warren Parry in their opener on Friday.
Danny Noppert - a debutant Down Under - faces a tough task in New Zealand’s number one Ben Robb, while Dimitri Van den Bergh takes on the experienced Haupai Puha.
Play in Friday's first round of the NZ Darts Masters gets underway at the GLOBOX Arena at 1900 local time (0800 BST), with the decisive quarter-finals, semi-finals and final to follow on Saturday August 5.
A limited number of tickets for the NZ Darts Masters are still available through Ticketek.
The NZ Darts Masters will be broadcast live on Sky Sport in New Zealand and Fox Sports in Australia, through DAZN in Germany, Austria and Switzerland and on PDCTV in all other global territories.
UK fans can watch live through PDCTV - subscription options include the PDCTV Summer Pass.
Coverage on ITV4 in the UK will be from 1900 BST on Friday and from 1700 BST on Saturday.
Following this weekend's NZ Darts Masters, the sport's stars will cross the Tasman Sea to Australia for the second leg of the World Series' Oceanic double-header.
The PalmerBet NSW Darts Masters will be held at the WIN Entertainment Centre in Wollongong on August 11-12. Tickets are available now through Ticketmaster.
2023 NZ Darts Masters August 4-5, GLOBOX Arena, Hamilton NZ Darts Masters Draw Bracket Gerwyn Price (1 - Wales) v Simon Whitlock (Australia) Danny Noppert (Netherlands) v Ben Robb (New Zealand) Peter Wright (4 - Scotland) v Jonny Tata (New Zealand) Rob Cross (England) v Warren Parry (New Zealand) Michael Smith (2 - England) v Darren Penhall (Australia) Damon Heta (Australia) v Darren Herewini (New Zealand) Dimitri Van den Bergh (3 - Belgium) v Haupai Puha (New Zealand) Nathan Aspinall (England) v Kayden Milne (New Zealand)
Schedule of Play Friday August 4 (1900 local time) First Round Rob Cross v Warren Parry Damon Heta v Darren Herewini Dimitri Van den Bergh v Haupai Puha Peter Wright v Jonny Tata Nathan Aspinall v Kayden Milne Gerwyn Price v Simon Whitlock Michael Smith v Darren Penhall Danny Noppert v Ben Robb
Saturday August 5 (1900 local time) Quarter-Finals Semi-Finals Final
Format First Round - Best of 11 legs Quarter-Finals - Best of 11 legs Semi-Finals - Best of 13 legs Final - Best of 15 legs