Raymond van Barneveld issues statement on retirement rumours!


Five-time world champion Raymond van Barneveld has issued a statement to reject rumours of his retirement, after a number of articles surfaced in the German media which suggested that he was set to quit the game.

Van Barneveld was denied a third UK Open title after losing 10-8 to Peter Wright in Sunday’s quarter-finals, in one of the greatest games in the competition’s history. Barney performed superbly and averaged 108.10, but Snakebite fought back from 8-7 behind to prevail after averaging 110.88 and landing thirteen maximums.

The five-time world champion was understandably disconsolate after not being rewarded for another magnificent display. However, he took to Facebook this morning to clarify comments he made on Sunday evening, after certain media outlets reported that Barney was poised to quit the game.

He said: “Just to come back to my message on Facebook yesterday. I didn’t say I was going to stop, but I will try to explain what I meant. For 30 years, darts has come in first place, then family then friends. I’ll do anything to get to the best version of myself to be in the hope of winning titles.

I don’t want to play darts to be just one of the players, I play to win. I realise I can’t always win, but sometimes you just have too much and then I think leave it, don’t sweat it. So what I want to say with my post- I want to enjoy more time with my family and friends.

“Of course I will do anything to win titles, but sometimes the sacrifices are too big; I need more balance.  I’m going to try and get myself straight. With the support of the people around me and my loyal fans, I hope to be able to achieve this,” Van Barneveld added.

At the beginning of the year, Van Barneveld confirmed that he would compete more regularly on the Pro Tour in a bid to climb the rankings, and that remains the case. However, RvB may scale down his exhibition commitments in order to enjoy more family time and remain fresh for ranking competition.

Barney has arguably been playing some of the best darts of his career over the last six or seven months. The Dutchman has reached the quarter-finals or better in his last five consecutive TV ranking majors- dating back to the World Grand Prix in October, where he reached the semi-finals.

Van Barneveld also recorded the third highest average in World Championship history in his semi-final defeat to Michael van Gerwen at the Alexandra Palace on New Years Day, having defeated Robbie Green, Alan Norris, Adrian Lewis & Phil Taylor earlier in the tournament.

Only Van Gerwen and Peter Wright have matched Barney’s consistency over recent months, and that’s seen the Den Haag ace climb back inside the world’s top eight on the PDC Order of Merit- his highest ranking position for over three years.

Next up for the legendary Dutchman is a clash with his compatriot Jelle Klaasen in Thursday’s Premier League at the SSE Hydro. Barney is adored by the Scottish darting public and has won a record eight matches in Glasgow; he’ll be hoping to improve upon that incredible record this week.

Photo Credit: Lawrence Lustig/PDC



One thought on “Raymond van Barneveld issues statement on retirement rumours!

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  1. Barney is as fierce a competitor as you will find, not only in darts, but in any sport. Now, he’s also one of the nicest, classiest, PROFESSIONALS you’ll find in the sport. If you’re looking for the right way to conduct yourself as a sportsmen and champion, I can think of no better example or role model than Raymond van Barneveld. As a result, it may be a little more difficult for some people to recognize that Barney takes a backseat to nobody in terms of his fierce desire to win. Don’t let Barney’s kindness and professionalism fool you. There is no disputing the fact that Barney is one of the greatest dart players in the history of the game. His five World Championships illustrate that, but those World Championships, along with all his other titles and accomplishments, also illustrate that Barney long ago demonstrated that he has no need to prove anything to anyone.

    As Barney said in his statement, he plays to win. His fierce desire to compete and win is what motivates him. He’s won and done everything there is to win and do in the game of darts. If it wasn’t for his fierce desire to compete and win, along with his belief that he remains very capable of continuing to compete and win, what else would there be to motivate him? If it was anything other than his desire to win, he most likely would have retired two or three years ago when he wasn’t playing quite as well as he had in the past or as well as he is playing now. Barney has not only played very well in the last several months, all indications are that he will be playing even better in the coming months.
    The standard of play in professional darts has seen a sharp rise in recent years. Barney’s game has returned and risen to the level where he can compete, and is competing, with the best at the current standard.
    Barney is going to spend more time with his family and probably much of it spent playing with his new grandbaby. Who could blame him? In the same position, we’d all probably do the same.
    However, Barney still has the eye of the tiger. He’ll always have the heart of a Champion. There’s no way Barney’s walking away now because he’s not finished winning titles. I look forward to seeing him win his next title.
    It has been a benefit to professional darts to have Raymond van Barneveld as a player, a Champion, and Ambassador for the sport. His continued presence will also benefit the future of darts because the younger players can observe him as a role model for the right way to conduct yourself as a Professional, a Champion, and perhaps most importantly, one of the good guys.

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