30 Years PDC World Championship - 30 years Dutch participants? - Part 2
2000 Roland Scholten - born 1965 in The Hague - appeared as the first Dutchman in the PDC who stayed for many years. Scholten had played some time in the BDO - a real amateur who pursued a profession and beside played darts. He was quite successful in the BDO, won some tournaments and qualified from 1994 to 1999 for every BDO World Championship. Twice he reached the quarterfinals and lost there to Mervyn King and Ronnie Baxter relatively. 1988 - in the very same year Raymond van Barneveld won his first World Champion title - Scholten stood in the semi-finals and lost to Richie Burnett. 1993 Scholten won the Men's singles of the WDF World Cup and in 1977 he won together with Raymond van Barneveld the PDC World Pairs Championship.
After the BDO World Championship 1999 Scholten decided, he wanted to be a professional darts player and earn his living playing darts. That was not possibel in the BDO so Scholten switched to the PDC.
Though the PDC was neither so big nor so popular at that time and many fans only knew the players who played in the BDO - as the BDO events were televised for free from the BBC - the PDC got more and more important in the world of darts. Beside it organised much more tournaments than the BDO and the price money was much higher. In the following years many players followed Scholten's lead. The BDO and its World Championship lost importance. No wonder the BDO reacted sharply and imposed sanctions to which of course the PDC reacted as well - the players were forced to decide for one of the organisations.
His debut Scholten gave in the World Matchplay 2000 but lost there first round as he did in the same year in the World Grand Prix. His World Championship debut he gave in the PDC World Championship 2001 where he lost in the quarterfinals 2:4 to Rod Harrington. But he stood in the same year in the final of the World Grand Prix and lost to Alan Warriner. 2002 Scholten already entered the PDC World Championship as the number 6 seed but lost second round to Dave Askew. 2003 - as number 5 seed - he again met Dave Askew in round two, defeated him this time 5:0 but lost in the next round against Alan Warriner. 2004 Scholten was the number 4 seed and lost first round to Lionel Sams. But 2004 was nevertheless a successful year for Scholten who went on and won the UK Open - his only Major win in the PDC. 2005 he was the number 5 seed again for the World Championship and lost fourth round to Denis Ovens.
2005, 2006 and 2007 Scholten was nominated for the Premier League. He reached the semi-finals in 2005, lost in the final 2006 to Phil Taylor and ended in the last place of the table in 2007.
2006 and 2007 Scholten was elimnated in the third round of the World Championship though he was 2006 the number 4 and 2007 the number 7 seed. Around this time he started to have problems with his neck and shoulder which grew worse. He got surgery but never really managed to come back. Till 2012 he still took part every year in the World Championship. 2010 he had slided down to rank 32 in the PDC Order of Merit, 2011 he qualified by the West Europe Qualifier and in 2012 he somehow managed to qualify by the Pro Tour Order of Merit but never got further then the second round. He was as well not successfull any longer in the other Majors after 2008 - the last good placing he reached in the Las Vegas Desert Classic 2008 where he reached the semi-finals. Scholten slided down the rankings and in 2013 ended his PDC career.
Scholten got not only well-known as a player but as co-commentator on TV in the Netherlands and in Germany as well. As his German is very good he worked some time as co-commentator together with Elmar Paulke for the German TV broadcaster Sport 1 - he was a very popular co-commentator. The Team Paulke/Scholten was iconic and to be sure helped to make the sport more wide spread an popular in Germany. Scholten as well worked some time for the German Darts Organisation DDV as a coach. He didn't stop to play completely, he now takes part in the World Seniors Darts Tour.
2001 and 2002 Scholten was the only Dutch participant in the PDC World Championship.
2003 he was joined by the Dutch qualifier Arjan Moen - born 1977 in Amsterdam - who completey fell into oblivion.
Moen, who got the nickname "The Dutch Destroyer" from the PDC, had been quite successful in his youth and won in 1995 the WDF Europe Cup Youth. From 2000 to 2002 he played in the BDO and took part in the World Masters. It followed his short trip to the PDC World Championship where he lost to Shayne Burgess. Burgess was beaten second round by Scholten.Moen returned to the BDO and played there some more years taking part in a few open events. 2006 - 2010 Moen took part from time to time and without success in PDC Players Championships on the continent. It looks he chucked darts in after that. As he once mention he just couldn't find a sponsor.
Moen was a friend of Vinvent van der Voort and they practiced together. In 2005 he told in an interview how his practice - usually half an hour a day and before events longer - looked: he tried to play fifteen darts legs, praticed finishes from 121 upwards and some rounds of doubles.
His dream to stand on the Lakeside stage never came true. For him - as for many darts players at that time - the PDC World Championship only was number-two choice.