Since the splitting of the famous British Darts Organisation (BDO) into another of its segment known as the Professional Darts Corporation (PDC), there have been numerous controversies surrounding the two. Even though BDO is an older organization, PDC has also been in the limelight since its introduction. While the two share some similarities somewhere they also vary somewhere else.
BDO vs PDC
The difference between BDO and PDC is that BDO was the first and the only original darts organization to be formed whereas PDC was formed many years later with the splitting of BDO. Both BDO and PDC had their own individual tournaments throughout the years.
BDO stands for British Darts Organization. This organization was formed by Olly Craft in 1973 to conduct professional darts competitions in Britain. It recognized professional, semi-professional, and amateur darts competitions as well. BDO also organized the first World Professional Darts Championship in 1978.
PDC stands for Professional Darts Corporation. This organization was formed in 1992 by a group of players. Following the dispute between Olly Craft and the top players of BDO, which caused a split in BDO and thereby forming PDC as a separate organization. PDC was originally known as World Darts Council (WDC).
Comparison Table Between BDO and PDC
|Parameters of Comparison||BDO||PDC|
|Stands for||British Darts Organization.||Professional Darts Corporation.|
|Origin||Formed by Olly Croft in 1973.||Formed in 1992 by a group of players.|
|Tournaments||U.K. Open, Las Vegas Desert Classic, and Sky Poker, etc.||Lakeside World Darts Professional Championship, Winmau World Masters, and Topic International, etc.|
|Quality of Players||Mostly includes rookie players looking for big opportunities.||Highly professional and world-class players.|
|Sponsorship||Sponsored by only a few companies because of less popularity.||Abundant sponsors in every tournament.|
What is BDO?
BDO stands for British Darts Organization. It was officially founded on 7 January 1973 by Olly Craft. BDO replaced the then existing National Darts Association of Great Britain (NDAGB), which had been the governing body of darts since 1954. BDO being the original organization, used to set the rules for professional darts which were globally recognized by organizations including PDC.
By the year 1984, darts had lost much of their popularity which caused a decline in TV coverage. As a result, many core sponsors stopped sponsoring the game. There was a lack of opportunity for even world-class players and darts as a full-time profession was being questioned. This caused a dispute between Olly Craft and a group of 19 darts players and hence, this group created World Darts Council (WDC).
The BDO organized the first-ever professional World Professional Darts Championship in 1978. This championship continued for the next 26 years till 2003. In 2004, the championship was recognized as Lakeside World Professional Darts Championship and it continued till 2019.
Over the years, the overall quality of BDO championships substantially degraded, and therefore, professional players prefer PDC over BDO. In December 2019, the World Darts Federation (WDF) announced that it would no longer recognize the BDO as the ruling body of darts in Britain.
What is PDC?
PDC stands for Professional Darts Championship. It was officially launched in 1992 when a group of 19 players split from the BDO to form a new organization. The organization they formed was initially named as World Darts Council (WDC) before it was later renamed.
Immediately after the formation of PDC, the emerging players also recognized BDO as inferior to PDC because of unhealthy and unprofessional practices that BDO had been following. Due to this, the best dart players grouped against BDO and formed PDC which included better players since day one. This trend continued to follow and with a decline in the popularity of BDO, sponsors shifted their investment towards PDC. Better sponsorships meant better opportunities and better incomes for professional dart players. As a result, all the new emerging stars of the game wanted to play in PDC.
PDC tournaments are now one of the most hyped and telecasted darts tournaments throughout the world. In 1992, PDC started telecasting only on Sky Sports in the UK. But with the growing popularity every year, PDC is now telecasted all over the world through many TV channels including Sky Sports, BBC, and One World Sports, etc. Sky Sports itself telecasts a total of six tournaments of PDC.
Main Differences Between BDO and PDC
- BDO had been setting the rules for professional darts till 2019 whereas PDC never had this authority.
- BDO is not nearly as popular as PDC due to a lack of opportunities for professionals.
- The quality of players in BDO is also not comparable to PDC players. PDC players are simply better than BDO’s.
- BDO matches are streamed on YouTube live whereas PDC does not live telecast on YouTube but only on subscribed TV channels.
- BDO liquidated in the first quarter of 2020. On the other hand, PDC is at its all-time highest popularity.
Ever since BDO and PDC were two separate organizations, various displays of rivalry also followed. There were people from PDO seen making fun of BDO and vice-versa. When BDO was the only organization in Britain, it was immensely popular among the people.
Since it started following unhealthy practices such as alcohol, smoking, disputes on national television, it turned into an unprofessional ethic. As a result, top professional players rose their voices against such incidents causing the dispute. Not only players, but sponsors also started withdrawing from the organization.
The splitting of BDO resulted in immense misfortune for the organization. With years passing, popularity and the level of the game degraded vastly. PDC offered better opportunities, more sponsorships, and professional ethics. It became an obvious choice for the top players to compete in PDC. While it made a huge difference to players, fans however got to see matches from both BDO and PDC. There were even demands for BDO Champions and PDC Champions to compete in matches so that only one undisputed champion can be recognized.
BDO has now also become a platform for new players. As the new players need to showcase their talent somewhere, BDO is the right place. Because all top-class players compete only in PDC, BDO gives the new players an opportunity to shine on national television.