Michael van Gerwen will take on Michael Smith on the opening night of the 2019 Unibet Premier League season on February 7 in Newcastle, while Raymond van Barneveld will face Van Gerwen in Rotterdam for the second consecutive campaign.
Darts’ widest-reaching tournament will see 17 nights of action held from February-May, including Judgement Night after nine matches, when the bottom two players in the table are eliminated after the players have faced each other once in the league phase.
This year’s tournament gets underway at Newcastle’s Metro Radio Arena, as Van Gerwen takes on Smith in a repeat of last year’s Premier League final. ‘The Green Machine’ also defeated ‘Bully Boy’ in the recent World Championship showpiece at the Alexandra Palace to clinch his third World Championship crown.
Former Premier League winners James Wade and Raymond van Barneveld will clash in the opening match of the tournament, whilst Gary Anderson and Mensur Suljovic lock horns in a repeat of their epic World Matchplay final in July 2018.
The SSE Hydro in Glasgow hosts Night Two, as two-time world champion Anderson takes on Players Championship Finals winner Daryl Gurney. Anderson’s compatriot Peter Wright takes on Smith on home soil, before Anderson and Wright collide on Night Three at the 3Arena in Dublin.
Van Gerwen will take on 2018 world champion Rob Cross for the second straight year in Dublin, after the pair met on the opening night of last year’s Premier League on Irish soil. Meanwhile, the evening kicks off with a showdown between Grand Slam champion Gerwyn Price and nine-time major winner James Wade.
Price takes on Gary Anderson in an eagerly anticipated tie on Night Four at Exeter’s Westpoint Arena, as ‘The Flying Scotsman’ seeks to avenge his defeat to the Welshman in their controversial Grand Slam final. Elsewhere, Van Gerwen and Wade, who won six televised titles between them in 2018, also do battle in Exeter.
The Premier League roadshow returns to Aberdeen for Night Five, where Van Barneveld – starring in his final Premier League campaign before his impending retirement – will hope to replicate his nine-dart feat of 2010 at The BHGE Arena in his meeting against home favourite Wright. However, the headline act sees Van Gerwen take on Scottish star Anderson.
The world number four faces his protege Smith in a repeat of last year’s Premier League semi-final at Nottingham’s Motorpoint Arena, while Cross and Van Barneveld collide in a battle of the former world champions.
The Premier League makes its second trip to the Mercedes-Benz Arena in Berlin on Night Seven, as Gurney bids to repeat his miraculous Players Championship Finals victory over Van Gerwen. The night concludes with a clash between former Premier League champions Anderson and Van Barneveld, while crowd favourite Suljovic plays Smith.
Wright, who defeated Van Gerwen twice in the 2018 Premier League, will take on the world number one on the first of two nights at Rotterdam Ahoy on Wednesday March 27, while Van Barneveld takes on Gurney on his return to Dutch soil.
The following night will see Van Barneveld make his final Premier League appearance in the Netherlands against Van Gerwen in an enthralling all-Dutch clash. The pair met at the Ahoy Arena in last year’s competition, with the five-time world champion running out a 7-5 winner.
Following the elimination of the bottom two players on Judgement Night, the remaining eight players will then compete for Play-Off places by facing each other once more in the league phase, with fixtures to be finalised after the second night in Rotterdam.
Photo Credit: Lawrence Lustig/PDC
2019 Unibet Premier League
Night One – Thursday February 7
Metro Radio Arena, Newcastle
James Wade v Raymond van Barneveld
Gerwyn Price v Daryl Gurney
Gary Anderson v Mensur Suljovic
Michael van Gerwen v Michael Smith
Peter Wright v Rob Cross
Night Two – Thursday February 14
The SSE Hydro, Glasgow
Peter Wright v Michael Smith
Rob Cross v James Wade
Raymond van Barneveld v Gerwyn Price
Daryl Gurney v Gary Anderson
Mensur Suljovic v Michael van Gerwen
Night Three – Thursday February 21
Gerwyn Price v James Wade
Gary Anderson v Peter Wright
Michael van Gerwen v Rob Cross
Michael Smith v Daryl Gurney
Mensur Suljovic v Raymond van Barneveld
Night Four – Thursday February 28
Gary Anderson v Gerwyn Price
Daryl Gurney v Rob Cross
Mensur Suljovic v Peter Wright
Michael van Gerwen v James Wade
Michael Smith v Raymond van Barneveld
Night Five – Thursday March 7
The BHGE Arena, Aberdeen
Michael Smith v Rob Cross
Daryl Gurney v James Wade
Mensur Suljovic v Gerwyn Price
Raymond van Barneveld v Peter Wright
Michael van Gerwen v Gary Anderson
Night Six – Thursday March 14
Motorpoint Arena, Nottingham
Gary Anderson v Michael Smith
James Wade v Mensur Suljovic
Rob Cross v Raymond van Barneveld
Gerwyn Price v Michael van Gerwen
Peter Wright v Daryl Gurney
Night Seven – Thursday March 21
Mercedes-Benz Arena, Berlin
Gerwyn Price v Rob Cross
James Wade v Peter Wright
Michael van Gerwen v Daryl Gurney
Michael Smith v Mensur Suljovic
Gary Anderson v Raymond van Barneveld
Night Eight – Wednesday March 27
Gerwyn Price v Michael Smith
James Wade v Gary Anderson
Rob Cross v Mensur Suljovic
Peter Wright v Michael van Gerwen
Raymond van Barneveld v Daryl Gurney
Judgement Night – Thursday March 28
Daryl Gurney v Mensur Suljovic
Peter Wright v Gerwyn Price
Rob Cross v Gary Anderson
Raymond van Barneveld v Michael van Gerwen
James Wade v Michael Smith