2024 PDC World Darts Championship: Michael Smith to begin title defence against Kevin Doets or Stowe Buntz

Michael Smith celebrates with PDC World Championship trophy
Michael Smith hit a nine-dart finish during the 2023 final against Michael van Gerwen

World champion Michael Smith will start his PDC title defence against either Kevin Doets or Stowe Buntz.

Second seed Van Gerwen will face Keane Barry or Reynaldo Rivera, while Wales’ former champion Gerwyn Price will play Connor Scutt or Krzysztof Kciuk.

The final takes place on Wednesday, 3 January 2024.

Two-time world champion Peter Wright of Scotland will face either Wales’ Jim Williams or Norman Madhoo of Guyana in his second-round match.

Five-time finalist and twice winner Gary Anderson could face 2010 runner-up Simon Whitlock in the second round if the Australian can beat Paolo Nebrida in their opener.

Radek Szaganski and Marko Kantele meet in the first round for the chance to face 2007 world champion Raymond van Barneveld in round two.

And Rob Cross – the only other former winner in this year’s field – will play Mario Vandenbogaerde or Thibault Tricole in the second round.

In-form Luke Humphries, who beat Van Gerwen to win the Players Championship Finals in November, will start his campaign against either Lee Evans or Sandro Eric Sosing.

First-round matches will take place 15-20 December, with each day also featuring at least one second-round tie.

All second-round matches will be completed before Christmas Day, with the third round beginning 27 December.

The quarter-finals are on New Year’s Day, with the semi-finals a day later and the final on 3 January.

The winner will claim darts’ biggest prize of £500,000, with the runner-up taking home £200,000.

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