LONDON (AFP) – Two-time world darts champion Gary Anderson (pic below) has been forced to pull out of the PDC Home Tour competition due to his WiFi connection not being “reliable enough”.
The Professional Darts Corporation (PDC) announced earlier this week that players would compete in a new series from their homes over 32 consecutive days, with usual competitions postponed due to the coronavirus pandemic.
But Anderson, the 2015 and 2016 world champion, has withdrawn in unlikely circumstances.
“I was up for it but when we did tests of my WiFi, it’s just not reliable enough,” the 49-year-old Scot told The Sun.
“It doesn’t surprise me. I struggle to pay bills online in my house, it’s really frustrating.
“I did want to take part. It would have been something different to try and win.”
PDC chairman Barry Hearn announced the new ‘Tour’ earlier this week, which will be livestreamed online, with players going head-to-head via video link.
“Maybe that will just put a little smile and give us something to look forward to,” Hearn told Talksport radio, with reigning world champion Peter Wright set to play in the inaugural match later on Friday.
The PDC boss added that all hope was not lost for Anderson yet.
“We’ve got a couple like that, we are trying to help, we are talking about boosters. There are technical things we can do,” he said.
“(World number one) Michael van Gerwen has just had a new baby so his house is in turmoil too.”
Northern Ireland’s world number six Daryl Gurney is also having to sit out of the tournament, saying he “doesn’t have the room”.
“I wouldn’t have minded playing to get my arm going again, but I haven’t got the room for it,” he told the BBC.
“Most of the leading players have a proper room kitted out for the job with fancy lighting…
“My dartboard is on the back of my bedroom door. I stand in the hall at the top of the stairs and I have one foot in the bathroom and one in the hall, so if someone needs to go to the bathroom I can’t throw.”