The Cologne darts professional Florian Hempel has won the national qualification and will compete for the second time at the World Cup in Alexandra Palace in London. The 32-year-old defeated Niko Springer 10:8 in the final of the Super League and thus prevailed in the qualifying tournament. Hempel turned a 2:6 deficit in the final. While other former World Cup starters such as Max Hopp and Nico Kurz now have to seek their last chance through an international qualification, Hempel can plan firmly for the tournament from December 15th to January 3rd.
From a German point of view, Gabriel Clemens and Martin Schindler had already qualified before Hempel. Last year, the man from Cologne reached the third round on his debut and defeated the Belgian world-class professional Dimitri van den Bergh on the way there. Hempel used to be a handball player and only later switched to darts.
The arrows have been flying in Niedernhausen, Hesse, since Monday. A group stage with ten games, a main round with 14 games, quarter-finals, semi-finals and final. If you wanted to get into the Ally Pally, you had to have staying power in the extensive German Super League. In the end, Hempel presented himself as the most consistent player.
The former German Primus Max Hopp, on the other hand, has experienced a sporting debacle and has to worry more than ever about participating in the World Cup. The 26-year-old Hesse was eliminated in the main round on Thursday and thus before the quarter-finals. In his group of eight, Hopp won only three of his 14 games. Even when he reached the main round, the Hessian had a lot of trouble. Only in the last game of the preliminary round did he secure progress with a 6:2 win against Christian Bunse.
Hopp, who has long since been ousted by Gabriel Clemens as the best German darts player, is threatened with the second World Cup in a row. Hopp still has one last minimal chance to qualify for the important tournament (December 15 to January 3, 2023) at the end of November via an international preliminary round. If Hopp misses the qualification, he will also lose his tour card and would have to compete at the Q-School at the beginning of next year. Hopp is currently only 73rd in the world rankings, only the top 64 get a ticket through the ranking.
Nico Kurz, who took part in the World Cup twice (2020 and 2021), also missed qualifying in the main round. Fabian Schmutzler, who was the youngest German World Cup starter of all time last year at the age of 16, didn’t even make it past the first group phase.
Florian Hempel – Dragutin Horvat 7:5
René Eidams – Daniel Klose 5:7
Lukas Little – Franz Rötsch 7:3
Ricardo Pietreczko – Niko Springer 6:7
Florian Hempel – Daniel Klose 8:7
Niko Springer- Lukas Little 8:6
Florian Hempel – Niko Springer 10:8