Glasgow will be lucky if it sees Premier League darts again for a while. If I was in charge I would take the extravaganza elsewhere after tonight’s frankly disgraceful scenes. Current World Champion, Adrian Lewis, fully expected a barrage of noise to rain down no him throughout his match with Flying Scotsman Gary Anderson but it was flying coins that decided the outcome.

The noise and booing Lewis could handle, he does most weeks, but his walk on was showered with beer the length of the runway and he was pelted with coins at key stages of the match. I have never witnessed such unsporting behaviour on the oche before. It has been coming and hopefully this is a wake up call to the PDC who are playing with fire in the Premier League.

I’ve attended Premier League nights and they were the least enjoyable nights of darts I’ve had. A tension emanates from the hordes and builds as the night progresses; in Manchester a couple of years ago I saw scuffles as the evening came to a close. Football terraces are often a seething mass of hatred these days and with the size of crowds the Premier League now attracts, it appears those same football-type fans have pervaded one of the last bastions of sportsmanship.

There aren’t too many left – cricket has always had its sledging but is played in the right spirit before a boisterous but decent crowd. Darts has always had its edgy moments and dubious characters (Lewis himself walked off and combusted in the face of some dodgy Peter Manley tactics a few years back) but generally the spirit is sporting and the crowd are considerate.

Let’s get one thing right here as well – the Glasgow crowd lost the match for their man. Gary Anderson was visibly disgusted by the coin throwing and his game was deeply affected. From 3-0 up and cruising he crumbled and lost 8-3. He even deliberately missed double top with 3 darts in the 10th leg after seeing his opponent put off his own double by the Scottish missiles. Anderson deserves the Paolo Di Canio award for sportsmanship for that moment.

It is argued that Adrian Lewis came of age when he won the world championship at the start of the year but tonight he proved he has matured enormously. He refused to rise to the crowd, he endured a soaking, booing and missile throwing, and, most impressively, he won the match, admittedly with some help from a thunder-faced Anderson. It’s perhaps the performance of the year so far, certainly in the Premier League.

Let’s hope this extreme behaviour was a one off and that security is tightened to eject these idiots whenever this kind of nonsense occurs. Tonight it had the reverse effect in losing the match for the man they were supposed to be supporting. It could also see Glasgow taken off the Premier League rota.

I’m not sure whether to feel happy for Lewis or sorry for Anderson but I know I’m disgusted with an appalling Glasgow crowd, many of whom cannot truly be darts fans.

DartsMad Lee

Post Post Note: I’m shocked that the official PDC report of the night makes absolutely no mention of coin throwing and is a complete misrepresentation of what went on. I understand their desire to sweep this under the carpet and not dwell on bad publicity but they risk taking their viewers for mugs. Anderson virtually threw the game and I guarantee the words said off stage were much stronger than those reported. We thought hard about whether to actually publish their round up, such is its inadequacy but it is up on the site so you can judge for yourself.

Stuart Pyke also reviewed the night on his Unicorn blog and in my opinion did not go far enough in condemnation of the Glasgow fans. It was more than a small element and darts is on a slippery slope if people in those positions do not speak out.

Next we’ll have the likes of Eric Bristow coming out saying it has always been like this (he had a pint pot thrown at him in Scotland back in the day). It has not always been like this and last night’s antics should be tolerated.

Darts is one of the few sports where fans can get up close & personal to the top players, it only takes the abused player to react and there could be real trouble. It is not exaggerating the point to say that players’ safety could be at risk if the escalation continues. Imagine if it was Ted Hankey up there last night – there would have been a riot.

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9 Responses

  1. mike cook

    i think tonights darts was a disgrace to the sport scotland should never be a venue for darts ever again if that happened in a football match the club would be fined well done anderson for “throwing” the match serves all the stupid t*ats who threw coins ! you bunch of idiots lost the match for anderson i hope you are all happy

  2. Nicholas

    Couldn’t agree more. I believe Anderson after the coin tossing just couldn’t be bothered. He lost interest and rightly so I too would be embarassed if my home country behaved in such a dispicable manner. Credit to both of them two true professionals of the sport.

    Scotland should be lucky if the pdc ever hosts tournaments again you’ve really let yourself down (I’m fully aware it was a minority)

  3. levi 501

    what a disgrace and a real shame…. I struggle to see any winners but maybe if this sort of thing is eradicated from the sport as a direct result of tonights actions there maybe some salvation for darts which is in a golden renaissance period…. Spare a thought for old Ted Hankey as he tends to his strawberries on his allotment muttering “I told you so”.

  4. Millsie

    I would agree to an extent, the PDC/Barry Hearn have been playing with fire for some time. I went to a Premier League event a few years ago and there was tension in the air once the (very) drunk crowd got going. But Cricket is not without its problems, the Lancashire v Yorkshire 20/20 game last year was the scene of running battles in the stands. Booze is the problem, not the sport itself

  5. Carole

    I was disgusted with last nights darts – they should never hold another event in Glasgow – they aren’t darts or even sports fans.

    I love watching darts on Sky but something needs to be done before something really serious occurs to one of the players. Drink is definately the problem and is totally spoiling everyones enjoyment. I feel really sorry for Lewis and Anderson because it was impossible to concentrate on the game – you were more concerned about the safety of the players.

    .

  6. Gary

    I don’t believe gary Anderson threw the match although i do believe he deliberately missed the double top after Adrian was put off by being hit by coins and that was a fantasti sporting gesture. I felt gary at one point was close to tears because of being so angry and embaressed at the antics of his home crowd. Going back to last weeks show i remember Gary being asked what he thought about the reception he got and he said ” If you think this is bad waite till we go to Scotland”. Adrian said at one point “Bring it on”.
    I feel these comments were a red rag to a bull and players should be a little more aware of what they are saying. Full Credit to both players on the night and i hope we don’t see any retaliation from an English crowd aimed at Gary. The PDC need to get a grip on this incident right away, if they don’t we could see what i believe to be one of the best sporting occasions on TV turned into a circus.

    • admin

      His end average was 87, I’ll bet his average for the last few legs was less than 80. He usually averages over 100 and was talking about hitting 120 last week. He didn’t try after falling behind and I’m sure he will have more to say on the matter.

  7. Jocky wilson

    Where dae ye start,absolute disgrace from me fellow Scots,do wane,and dinny came back to da darts again….