Soham’s Brett Claydon is off to Romania this weekend as he begins his first season playing on the British Darts Organisation (BDO) circuit, writes Alex Moss.
The Burwell Super League player, nicknamed The Shredder, has been at Qualifying School for the last four years trying to win a tour card to play on the rival Professional Darts Corporation (PDC) tour.
However, this year Claydon was not among the record 434 players competing at the Robin Park Tennis Centre, in Wigan, last week, and has instead decided to try out the BDO tour.
“I’m going to do the BDO circuit and also do the Challenge Tour on the PDC side,” he said.
“I’m going to pick and choose the events I want to play in.
“I’m going to try and do one or two (BDO tournaments) a month.
“I’m playing in Romania at the end of this month, which is the first BDO tournament I can enter.”
While Claydon has prior experience of playing under the BDO system, representing Cambridgeshire in the British Inter-Counties Championship, this weekend’s trip to Bucharest will be his first taste of competing in ranking tournaments.
Each tournament offers ranking points and is categorised based on its prestige.
The Romanian Classic, which starts on Saturday, is Category C, while the Romanian Open on Sunday is a Category B event.
The Men’s Singles Classic champion will take home €1,300, while the Men’s Singles Open champion will pocket €2,000.
Recent BDO World Championship semi-finalist Jamie Hughes has won the last two stagings of the Romanian Classic, while Dutchman Fabian Roosenbrand lifted the Romanian Open title 12 months ago.
“I do like the idea of travelling around,” Claydon said. “I’m quite looking forward to seeing what other countries have to offer.
“I want to do a World Championship, whether that’s Lakeside (BDO) or Ally Pally (PDC), I don’t mind.
“I just want to make it once. I’ll see how close I am at the end of the year to qualifying for Lakeside.”