Teen from Nunavut takes aim at world championships in darts, the 'most random sport ever'

Caidynce Rever first caught the bug for playing competitive darts around February last year.

The 15-year-old from Cambridge Bay, Nunavut, was asked by her mom if she wanted to join her at a provincial competition in Alberta.

Rever said yes — but then almost slept in before the tournament.

"[My mother] tried to wake me up. I was like, 'I'm not going'…. And then she's like, 'whatever.' They were in the car about to leave and I got up. I yelled out my window, I was like, 'wait for me, I'm coming,'" Rever said.

Lucky she did, because it was that competition that got her hooked on the sport. Before, Rever had only thrown darts for fun.

Now some 16 months later, Rever is preparing for the World Darts Federation (WDF) World Masters, in Hungary in October.

Caidynce Rever qualified for the World Masters about placing third in youth female division of the darts nationals in May 2024, held in Saint-Hyacinthe, Que. She was playing alongside athletes on Team Alberta.
Rever qualified for the World Masters after placing 3rd in the youth female division of the darts nationals, held in Saint-Hyacinthe, Que., last May. She was playing alongside athletes on Team Alberta. (Submitted by Viki Rever)

She's currently ranked first in the junior females division in Canada, and will become the first Inuk youth to represent Canada on the world stage in darts.

"I still think it's all a dream and I'm just waiting to wake up," she said.

It's the people that make it worthwhile

Rever said she's got some jitters about playing in the international tournament, but by her side will be her trusty coach, Bud Boland.

During the season, they train twice a week at the Jasper Place Legion in Edmonton, where Rever now lives.

"She was so shy when I first met her. If we didn't approach her, you probably wouldn't get any conversation from her at all," Boland said.

"But Caidynce, to my wife and I, is just like one of our granddaughters. That's how close she is now."

Rever said it's people like Boland who encourage her to keep going with the sport.

"I feel like darts is the most random sport ever. But if you give it a shot, you'll love it… And you'll love the people around you too," Rever said.

Bud Boland (middle) says he, and his wife Virginia Boland (left) see Caidynce Rever just like one of their granddaughters.
Rever, at right, with her darts coach Bud Boland and Boland's wife Virginia, after Rever's 1st tournament win in Fort McMurray, Alta., in April 2023. (Submitted by Viki Rever)

Growing the sport among the next generation

As a coach of 14 young dart players in Edmonton, Boland said he's seeing interest in the sport grow among the younger generation.

But in order to carry the sport even further, he said clubs need to provide more opportunities for youth to get involved.

"I think I'm one of the only [people] in the Edmonton area that coaches kids. I'm hoping more people will do that," he said.

He believes it's an accessible sport for people of all ages and abilities to enjoy.

And if you're in need of any tips, take it from one of the country's top players.

"You just gotta go out on a board and throw a few yards until you're comfortable with it," Rever said.

"And if you feel nervous, take a step back, breathe and just throw your darts. Play your own game."