ADC Buttressing Grassroots Women’s Darts

Red Dragon Darts

After a strong start to the Amateur Darts Circuit last year with the introduction of weekly held competitions playing in a competitive environment on a regular basis, the ADC are back with a brand-new concept. 

Claire Stamper head of Women’s development for the organisation, has kick-started 2023 with a new female tour, as players get the opportunity to play matches for ranking points through tournaments organised each week. 

“When I went to an event up in Newcastle with 1 of our players, I spoke to Scott Hunt and I was sort of selling the events to him. The next day he sent me a text asking to set up a tour and give him feedback on it.”

FALLON SHERROCK Pic: Christopher Dean

Fallon Sherrock showed anything is possible after her heroics at the World Championship back in 2020, beating Ted Evetts and former Champions League of Darts winner Mensur Suljovic. The Queen of the Palace also made history this weekend in the Challenge Tours, producing the first 9 dart leg from a female player in Event 9. 

Beau Greaves at the age of just 18 produced the highest average on Finals Day at the recent WDF World Championships, whitewashing Kirsty Hutchinson 4-0 in the Final with a score of 92.05 at Lakeside. 

“Players must start somewhere, and we’ve got the progression from singles leagues to national leagues. We’re bringing in the lady’s tour to develop players and give them the tournament experience to go into events such as the PDC Women’s Series.”

The Women’s Tour has kicked off with multiple leagues playing already, but the aim now is to move out into other areas/ regions over the country and give even more players the opportunity to play. 

“We’ve already started our National LP Singles Tour sponsored by LP Metal Detecting, they started in February with leagues of 8 players and these can be run anywhere in any venue across the UK.”

“We’ve got 8 leagues running, with 4 due to start in the next few weeks. But the aim is to branch out and get more tournaments playing further down South because the support currently is coming from the North, and we want to play in areas such as London, Scotland, and Wales. 

“The leagues last 7 weeks with the top two from each league going to Finals weekend, where a prize fund of £4000 is up for grabs.”

“The Top 24 who earn the most points from the 7 weeks played will also be invited, with Final’s weekend set to take place in Bristol.”

The Ranking Events that the ADC are organising will give players the opportunity to potentially qualify for a special MODUS Super Series, a chance for the top 8 to play in front of a live-streamed audience on YouTube, and a main stage with the Winmau Blade 6 dartboard, which the PDC pros use during their events. 

“The ladies tours don’t start until May with 3 venues staging 12 ranking events. The first will be on the 20th-21st of May at Bridlington Sports Centre which will be 4 events and a separate prize fund for each competition.”

“The 1st-2nd of July will be at Middlesbrough Sports Village before we go into August with our last 4 events at Wellsway Sports Centre in Bristol. The 12 events we play will include a ranking system, and the top 8 on those will head to Portsmouth to play in the Special MODUS Super Series.”

The cost for the lady’s game is always a factor any darts player will look at before committing to competitions, with the expenses for travelling to get to these events a considerable point for many. 

“We’ve aimed for 4 events so when we have our players travelling it’s not just for 1 or 2 events, it’s for 4. For costs we’ve tried to make the entry fee affordable (£11) which should be paid back to any player who makes the Last 16, should we have 32 entries per event.”

The UKDA is another potential avenue that can help to promote the lady’s game, with the organisation playing county matches regularly while also including national singles and pairs leagues. 

“I was a commercial director with the UKDA. I just think at the moment if the organisations sat down and spoke about the development, the game could be in a healthier position. I’m not saying the game isn’t in a good place now, but it would push the players from pillar to post, they don’t know what to do because there are so many options.”

World Champion Beau Greaves was supporting amateur throwers at last year’s ADC Women’s event in Bristol and even pouring a few pints.

The ADC Ladies Tour begins in May, with the concept a perfect idea to get more ladies playing in the game. The likes of Fallon Sherrock, Lisa Ashton and Beau Greaves have shown what is possible and what can be achieved in the future for the sport. 


Images: ADC

(Editors note: Corrections made to names and abbreviations on March 22nd, 2022)

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