JELLE KLAASEN and Kim Huybrechts will return to the Betway Premier League in 2017, with the ten-player field for next year’s £825,000 tournament also featuring former champions Michael van Gerwen, Phil Taylor, Gary Anderson, James Wade and Raymond van Barneveld.
Dutch star Klaasen consolidated his status inside the world’s top ten during 2016, following up a run to the World Championship semi-finals by reaching the last four at the UK Open and the European Championship quarter-finals.
Klaasen previously competed in the 2009 Premier League, and will get a second chance to compete alongside the sport’s elite stars in the forthcoming season, which begins at the Metro Radio Arena in Newcastle on Thursday February 2.
Belgian star Huybrechts also returns to make his second Premier League appearance, having previously competed in the 2015 tournament, having reached three TV quarter-finals during 2016 and the World Cup of Darts semi-finals alongside brother Ronny.
With the world’s top four players – van Gerwen, Anderson, Peter Wright and Adrian Lewis – qualifying by right, Klaasen and Huybrechts are two of the six Wildcard selections.
Six-time Premier League champion Phil Taylor is a Wildcard for the first time after dropping down to sixth in the PDC Order of Merit, with fellow former champions James Wade and Raymond van Barneveld joining Dave Chisnall in completing the ten-player field.
The Betway Premier League season will see the ten players face each other once over the opening nine weeks before the bottom two players are eliminated following Judgement Night on March 30.
The remaining eight players then compete over the remaining six league nights for places in the top four to progress to the Play-Offs at The O2 in London on Thursday May 18, with the semi-finals and final deciding the 2017 champion.
A record £250,000 first prize is on offer for the 2017 Betway Premier League champion, with a £25,000 League Leader’s Bonus also on offer for the player who finishes the regular season at the top of the league table.
Tickets for the league nights in Rotterdam, Cardiff and Aberdeen have sold out, but may still be available for other venues, with box office details listed at www.pdc.tv/tickets.
2017 Betway Premier League
Michael van Gerwen (Netherlands) – reigning Premier League champion
Gary Anderson (Scotland) – 2011 & 2015 Premier League champion
Peter Wright (Scotland) – 2014 World Championship finalist
Adrian Lewis (England) – 2011 Premier League finalist
James Wade (England) – 2009 Premier League champion
Phil Taylor (England) – Six-time Premier League champion
Dave Chisnall (England) – 2015 Premier League semi-finalist
Jelle Klaasen (Netherlands) – 2009 Premier League competitor
Raymond van Barneveld (Netherlands) – 2014 Premier League champion
Kim Huybrechts (Belgium) – 2015 Premier League competitor
Fifth Place £65,000
Sixth Place £55,000
Seventh Place £50,000
Eighth Place £45,000
Ninth Place £30,000
Tenth Place £25,000
League Leader’s Bonus £25,000
Night One – February 2, Metro Radio Arena, Newcastle
Night Two – February 9, Motorpoint Arena, Nottingham
Night Three – February 16, First Direct Arena, Leeds
Night Four – February 23, The Brighton Centre
Night Five – March 2, Westpoint Arena, Exeter
Night Six – March 9, The SSE Hydro, Glasgow
Night Seven – March 16, Rotterdam Ahoy
Night Eight – March 23, The Manchester Arena
Judgement Night – March 30, Motorpoint Arena, Cardiff
Night Ten – April 6, 3Arena, Dublin
Night 11 – April 13, Echo Arena, Liverpool
Night 12 – April 20, The SSE Arena, Belfast
Night 13 – April 27, Barclaycard Arena, Birmingham
Night 14 – May 4, The Sheffield Arena
Night 15 – May 11, GE Oil & Gas Arena, Aberdeen
Play-Offs – May 18, The O2, London
For tickets, see www.pdc.tv/tickets.