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PDC Darts rumoured to make return to the United States

Jamie Shaw in Darts 6 Jul 2016
(Photo by Todd Warshaw/Getty Images)

The PDC is poised to stage its first televised tournament on American soil for eight years as part of the 2017 World Series of Darts.

PDC Chairman Barry Hearn is keen for another crack at the lucrative American market in a long-term plan to restore the nation to its former darting glories.

The United States was once a stronghold of darts in the 1980s and 90s, but has not hosted a PDC televised event since the 2009 Las Vegas Desert Classic.

Currently, no player from the USA holds a PDC Tour Card, with only John Part and Ken MacNeil flying the flag for Canada in the world's top 100.

This is in stark contrast to the time of the formation of the PDC (then known as the World Darts Council) when seven players from the United States appeared in the inaugural World Championship at the Circus Tavern in 1994.

In a recent interview with Darts Weekly magazine, Hearn outlined his intentions to add an American leg onto the ever-expanding World Series circuit as of 2017.

"The next big push we're going to do is we're going back to America," revealed Hearn.

"There's slightly different promotional techniques you have to use in America. You have to give them some American winners.

"We'll do a massive qualifier on site, so every player in North America gets a chance, and that will find the guys to compete in the event.

"The top eight are earning great money obviously but they have a responsibility to spread the game, which they are embracing and I'm thankful to them for that," he added.

The World Series of Darts is currently comprised of six events, including stages in Dubai, Australia, New Zealand, Japan and China, featuring eight of the sport's top stars and a series of regional qualifiers and wildcards.

Though a host venue for the proposed American event has yet to be finalised, it is believed Las Vegas is the preferred option, having hosted the popular Desert Classic from 2002-2009.

Larry Butler remains the only American player to have won a major darts tournament in Europe (the 1994 World Matchplay) and emphasised his longevity by reaching the final of the 2015 BDO Winmau World Masters.

The USA has witnessed a considerable transition in participation from steel-tip to soft-tip over the past decade and the PDC are hopeful of reigniting interest in the traditional format as well as attracting healthy crowds and media coverage.


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PDC Darts rumoured to make return to the United States

The PDC is poised to stage its first televised tournament on American soil for eight years as part of the 2017 World Series of Darts.

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