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Column #CM 55 Anastasia Dobromyslova – until now, the only woman to qualify by pub qualifier for the PDC World Championship

Monday, December 24, 2018
Column CM55
Anastasia Dobromsylova – until now, the only woman to qualify by pub qualifier for the PDC World Championship

Yes, that happened once (it was not so long ago). The woman who managed this was Anastasia Dobromyslova and she was again one of the players who stood on the stage of the Alexandra Palace on day five of this year’s tournament.

Dobromyslova entered the pub qualifiers for the UK Open in 2008 after she had won the BDO Women’s World Championship for the first time and managed to qualify. As it sometimes happens with the draw she was drawn against another pub qualifier who was a BDO player at that time – Robert Thornton. Sometimes PDC careers start like this.

Dobromyslova lost a close match and somehow, for some time, didn’t seem to know to which organisation she belonged. First she played the Winmau World Masters but she had an invitation to the Grand Slam of Darts as this year the PDC had decided to invite the BDO Women’s World Champion as well – and she switched to the PDC circuit on which her husband at that time competed.

She was the first woman to take part in the Grand Slam and though she didn’t survive the group phase she almost defeated Wayne Mardle – something he still today doesn’t like to be reminded of. Later the year, she got a wildcard for the PDC World Championship 2009 – supposedly because an Indian qualifier had withdrawn. A lot of fierce discussion followed. Dobromyslova lost her Preliminary Round match against Remco van Eiden.

She qualified again for the UK Open in 2009 by the UK Open rankings and played as a PDPA member in the PDC Women’s World Championship but lost in the semi-finals to the late, great America Stacy Bromberg. In 2010, she again took part in the Grand Slam and this time in the group phase defeated Vincent van der Voort. In the same year, she partnered with Roman Konchikov as Team Russia in the very first PDC World Cup. When she didn’t qualify for the PDC World Championship again she left the PDC and returned to the BDO in 2011. Since then she twice – in 2012 and 2013 – won the BDO World Championship. These days Dobromyslova sometimes plays, as does her husband, in soft-darts events.

Dobromsylove took part in the “Rest of the World” qualifier for this year’s PDC World Championship and thus returned to the Alexandra Palace.

After four long days of darts the fifth day of the World Championship was the first day with only an evening session – again with three first round matches and one Second round match. Despite it being a Monday evening the venue was well filled as was the press room.

As it turned out the strong attendance was not because of Raymond van Barneveld who played the last match of the night but because of Anastasia Dobromyslova. After her match a lot of the journalists and photographers disappeared.

The evening started with the match between Vincent van der Voort and Lourence Ilagan, a high-class and interesting match – and from both players fast match. Ilagan won only one set because he had a lot of trouble finding a double but nevertheless van der Voort couldn’t get rid of him and van der Voort’s 3-1 win was a little bit lucky. Somehow both players seemed to be as strong – it might even be that Ilagan was a little bit better.

The second match between Devon Petersen and Wayne Jones was very close and only decided in the last leg of the fifth set. Jones had six match darts but couldn’t hit a double while Petersen needed some luck and eight attempts to hit the double to win.

After that, the crowd enthusiastically cheered Anastasia Dobromyslova as she came on stage to face debutant Ryan Joyce. Joyce had qualified by the Pro Tour Order of Merit. Until Qualifying School 2018 he played on the BDO Circuit so probably he knows Dobromyslova quite well. It was not really difficult for Joyce to win as Anastasia’s average was almost 15 points lower than his. It looks as though Dobromyslova is not back to her old strength after the birth of her son last year. She lost 0-3.

While the defeat of Anastasia not really an upset the last match of the night – the second round match – brought one… Raymond van Barneveld lost to Darius Labanauskas.

Although van Barneveld recently announced he would retire at end of 2019 he expressed his belief that he could still win another World Championship – but in this World Championship he seemed to lack vigor and fought throughout to find a double. He looked as if he didn’t enjoy playing at all and throughout the course of the match couldn’t find a way to up his game. His opponent Darius Labanauskas on the other hand played as solid as in his first round win over Matthew Edgar which was on this day enough to defeat Raymond van Barneveld 3-0 and to progress into the third round. It was the second big upset of the tournament and the Dutchman will slide down the rankings

It was very late when I finally returned to my room and behind most windows I passed it was already dark. Nevertheless, on a leafless tree beside the street a bird sang full-throated…


  • Charis Mutschler

    Charis Mutschler is from Marbach, near Stuttgart, Germany. Her husband introduced her to the sport by bringing a dartboard into their marriage (or was it to their wedding?), turning her from a librarian by day into a darts fanatic by night. Charis has been writing about the sport for years and is a regular at most PDC majors, from which she provides reports and conducts player interviews. She is bilingual and cultured, with a love for literature, dance, music, cats, and the conservation movement. Charis’ writings about darts and its players often transcend the typical, showcasing her class and distinction, unlike Dartoid and the Old Dart Coach.