Striking Perfection: The Legacy of Televised Nine-Dart Finishes

Updated: 219 Darts

Rediscover darts' most electrifying moments with our deep dive into the 84 historic televised nine-dart finishes. From John Lowe to Fallon Sherrock, witness the pinnacle of precision.

Striking Perfection: The Legacy of Televised Nine-Dart Finishes
In this article: Every 9 Darter on TV
Matthew Edgar Darts Editor and WDF Professional

Former PDC Darts Professional, SkySports Darts Commentator and YouTuber with 6 tournament wins under his belt including the Iceland Open in 2023

Step into the exhilarating realm of darts where televised nine-dart finishes stand as a testament to supreme skill and nerve. Through this article, explore each unforgettable moment that resonates through the sport's history, learn about the legends who've achieved this rare feat, and understand its significance in the ever-growing popularity of darts betting. Prepare for a journey celebrating precision at its finest.

Darting Heroes: Reliving the Televised Nine-Dart Milestones 🌟

🎯 Precision at its peak! Dive into the excitement of 84 iconic televised nine-dart finishes across darts history. From legendary throws to unforgettable victories, we've got it all covered. Name your favourite darting hero! 🔝

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9 Dart Finish in Darts

If someone were to ask you to name the great feats in sport, what would first spring to mind?
A hat-trick in the FA Cup final, a hole-in-one at the Ryder Cup, a 147 at the Crucible Theatre would certainly be on the list and rightly so.

However, this list has room for more additions and one of those must surely be a nine-dart finish at the oche. Whether it's at Alexandra Palace, Frimley Green or anywhere in between, hitting 501 in less than 10 throws is nothing short of remarkable.

While it is remarkable due to how difficult it is to achieve. If every darts player down The Dog and Duck was finishing up a leg in nine-darts, it would be no different to someone scoring a tap in on the football pitch.

That difficulty makes such a spectacle rather rare. Rare but not extinct and with the sport of darts increasingly in popularity over the years, the television cameras are showing more and more arrows being thrown.

Primetime: Televised Nine-Dart Wonders 🏆📺

Rare as a comet, a televised nine-dart finish is the pinnacle of darts! 🎯✨ On the big screen, we've seen 84 darting legends make history. Who's your favourite?

The more cameras and eyes on the sport, the greater chance that such a display of darting prowess is shown on television and although everybody has a mate who hit a nine-darter down their local, we are now going to look at those who have had this achievement captured on the box. 

At the time of writing, there have been 84 televised instances of a nine-dart finish being captured on TV. From John Lowe almost 40 years ago in 1984 to Fallon Sherlock in August 2023, these have been some of the sport’s most memorable moments.

All the 9 Darts Finishes seen on TV

If you need your memory jogged, here is the list in full: 

No. Date Year Player
1 13 October 1984 1984 John Lowe
2 9 January 1990 1990 Paul Lim
3 3 February 2002 2002 Shaun Greatbatch
4 1 August 2002 2002 Phil Taylor
5 5 June 2004 2004 Phil Taylor
6 12 June 2005 2005 Phil Taylor
7 23 March 2006 2006 Raymond van Barneveld
8 17 February 2007 2007 Michael van Gerwen
9 8 May 2007 2007 Phil Taylor

An impressive list of names, but ultimately nothing more than a list at the same time. However, the first dive into the data allows us to rank these players by number of nine-dart finishes: 

Criteria – Must have made at least two in their career for entry.

Rank Player Nine-darters Last
1 Phil Taylor 11 2015
2 Michael van Gerwen 8 2022
3 Raymond van Barneveld 5 2010
Adrian Lewis 2017
5 James Wade 4 2022
Gerwyn Price 2022
7 Gary Anderson 3 2018
Michael Smith 2023
Conor Heneghan 2023

All Phil Taylors Nine Darts on TV

As we can see, it is Phil Taylor who currently holds the record for the most televised nine-darters. He also holds the record for most World Championship titles. Two within the governance of the BDO, 14 when it comes to their former rivals, the PDC. 

14 World Championships, 11 televised nine-darters by comparison. A figure that should not be sniffed at and is three more than the player who finds himself second in our list – the man in question being Michael Van Gerwen.

Michael van Gerwen - Sven Mandel, CC BY-SA 4.0 , via Wikimedia Commons

Not quite as powerful as Taylor when it comes to landing nine-darters but the three-time World Champion is no stranger when it comes to landing this particular feat. The Dutchman has managed it on eight separate occasions, the last of those coming back in 2022.

While his compatriot Raymond van Barneveld shares third place with Adrian Lewis. The two former World Champions have managed five televised nine-darters, the former has to go back to 2010 for the last time he achieved it.

Sven Mandel, CC BY-SA 4.0 , via Wikimedia Commons

How Often are 9 Dart Finishes Seen on TV?

Now that we have a greater idea as to who is landing them, we can also breakdown when:

Year Count
1984 1
1990 1
2002 2
2004 1
2005 1
2006 1
2007 5
2008 2
2009 4

We know that John Lowe hit the first nine-darter in 1984, and it would take another six years before Paul Lim would do the same. From there, the 1990s would be something of a wilderness and the turn of the millennium as well.

It would not be until 2002 when the cameras would next spot a nine-darter and after waiting 12 years for one, this year would be the first year that produced at least two. Step forward Shaun Greatbatch and Phil Taylor, as they become players three and four to join the list. 

Another two years would be required for Taylor to be the first person to ever land a second and from 2004 onwards there was nothing in the way of a pattern, no clean upward curve but a definite uptick from that point forward.

Something that goes back to the increase in popularity of the sport as a whole. The more popular darts gets, the more it is televised. The more it is televised, the more opportunities there are to catch a nine-darter.

Televised Triumphs: The Rise of Nine-Darters in Modern Darts 🚀🎯

As darts soars in popularity 📈, TV coverage increases 📺, presenting us with more thrilling nine-darters 🎯 than ever! From 2020-2023, we've seen 31 perfect legs, making up 36.9% of all televised nine-darters!

For example, if we take the period from 2020 to 2023, there have been 31 nine-darters in just four years. That is 36.9% of the whole data sample. One tenth of the years available, almost four in ten when it comes to nine-darter history.

Because it is not just Sky that show the World Championships each year, the likes of ITV now have a stable portfolio of darts coverage and this not only means a bigger payday for the players but more opportunities to show just how good they are. 

Where did the 9 Darters Happen?

This also means we can look at what tournaments these nine-darters are being landed at: 

Tournament Total Org.
PDC World Darts Championship 14 PDC
Premier League Darts 14 PDC
MODUS Super Series 12 MSS
UK Open 11 PDC
PDC World Matchplay 8 PDC
Grand Slam of Darts 5 PDC
European Championship 4 PDC
World Grand Prix 3 PDC
International Darts League 2 BDO

Sharing top spot is the PDC World Darts Championship and the Premier League Darts and there is a logical explanation to this. The former is the pinnacle of the sport and only the very best make it here, the latter has more in the way of frequency.

Both are contested annually but the Premier League has weekly competition in the regular season phase and the more games that are played and subsequently shown on television, the more nine-darters are likely to be captured.

These two tournaments are the crown jewels of the PDC and the Barry Hearn-led governing body has long since seen off the BDO in terms of competition. However, there is something of a new kid on the block emerging.

The MODUS Super Series is a weekly tournament featuring twelve players who play in a series of group matches from Monday to Friday. Saturday sees six of those twelve advance to the finals evening in a bid for ultimate glory.

Rising Stars at the Oche: MODUS Super Series Shines 🚀🎯

🎯🌟 A new arena for darting prowess! The MODUS Super Series brings intense matches & stunning nine-darters weekly. Tune in to Sky Channel 427 for all the action!

With such regularity to the competition, this is quickly becoming a proving ground for darts talent and at the time of writing it has captured 11 nine-darters. Admittedly the competition may be hidden away on the unknown channel of but as it is on Sky Channel 427, it is no less televised.

It was also the home of the last televised nine-darter to have been televised. Fallon Sherlock has the honour bestowed to her and this comes courtesy of her impressive checkout at the expense of Adam Lispcombe.

Fallon Sherrocks Nine Darter

Sherlock is number 84 but the question is who will be entry number 85 on the list? With a proliferation in televised darts, you get the feeling that it will not be far away. Give it another couple of years and we can soon start talking about number 100 and beyond.

Source and Contributor Information

The 9-dart finish is the ultimate challenge outside of winning a top competition in darts and doing it in front of the world on TV makes it even sweeter. We set our data scientist Dan Tracey on a mission to find every televised 9-dart finish over the years and provide some commentary around the numbers. Dan Edgar, a professional WDF darts player and OLBG-sponsored professional added his thoughts and opinion to complete the piece.

Dan Tracey

Data and Words

Dan Tracey is a multi-talented writer, data analyst and podcaster whose six-year career in the sports data sphere has seen incredible successes. From helping UEFA create their annual technical reports to writing articles for Sports Betting Websites including sites like TheLinesUS and Goal - there's no shortage of areas where his expertise shines through! In addition, he can be heard on podcasts lending an insightful voice as well as providing weekly betting angles - all culminating with him teaming up in the present day. Simply put: wherever you find angled data being crunched? You'll also likely find Dan not far behind!

👨‍🏫 Specialist Subjects🔬📚

Dan's specialist area is data; and lots of it! Wherever we need numbers to create our unique deep dive articles, Dan is our go-to. Dan is also a Tottenham Fan and a football commentator for Newcastle Blue Star

- Dan Tracey, Data scientist and football editor

Matthew Edgar

OLBG Sponsored Darts Professional

Matthew Edgar, born on August 28, 1986, is an English professional darts player currently targeting the WDF World championships at Lakeside in December 2024 and commentating on Darts for Sky Sports. Known for his practice sessions with former world championship runner-up Kevin Painter, Edgar began his sports career as a coach for Northampton Town before shifting to darts. Prior to his darts career, he trained in mixed martial arts and was a professional wrestler. Edgar also hosts a dedicated darts YouTube channel, "Edgar TV," where he interacts with followers and shares his professional competition experiences.

Follow Matthew as he targets Lakeside and the WDF World Championships in December 2024.

- Matthew Edgar, Darts editor and wdf professional

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