Five-time world champion Raymond Van Barneveld is set to end his brief retirement after announcing plans to attend next year’s PDC Qualifying School in a bid to win back his tour card.
The 53-year-old Dutchman, winner of 29 PDC titles, brought the curtain down on his glittering career at the end of 2019 after he suffered a first-round World Championship defeat to Darin Young at Alexandra Palace. He had initially announced his intention to retire after suffering elimination from the Premier League in Rotterdam last March before reversing his decision the following day.
But Van Barneveld is ready to end 12 months away from the oche and return in early 2021 after linking up with former manager Ben De Kok.
“It’s very simple. I miss it. I miss it terribly,” Van Barneveld explained to RTL News.
“I think the decision (to retire) was the right one, but I have now had a lot of time to think about it. Then I realised I miss it terribly. “I now have a unique opportunity to realise my dream and to work in a team. I think that is the solution for me.Raymond Van Barneveld waved goodbye to darts at the end of 2019 (Bradley Collyer/PA)
“Because I haven’t been myself for the past two or three years, you don’t always make the right decisions.
“Your head is haunted and you’re a nightmare for everyone. But that’s different now. I’m looking forward to it.“I signed for three years, so we have the chance to at least get a tour card for three years. If I want to get my tour card, I will have to do my best.”
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