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Fallon Sherrock gave us a glimpse into the future of darts on Thursday night
Fallon Sherrock has put women's darts on the map. So would now be the right time to set up a PDC women's tour?
Last Updated: 19/02/20 6:24am
Darts was already an expanding empire, but Fallon Sherrock has given us a glimpse into the future after putting the game onto the global map of which the like has never seen before.
Journalists from around the world arrived in Nottingham with the intention of grabbing the attention of the 25-year-old single mum who has burst onto the scene following her groundbreaking exploits at the PDC world championship in December.
They came from France, Germany, the Netherlands and Canada with media companies such as L'Équipe and Bloomberg turning up to see darts' newest star. You hear of media scrums, but in darts? Never. That was the case until the arrival of Sherrock onto the scene.
Journalist Louise Gerber arrived at the Motorpoint Arena representing French newspaper L'Équipe. There was only one name on her lips.
"For us, Sherrock is a big star," said Gerber. "She is a woman playing in a male-dominated sport. The Fallon Sherrock story is the first one which has made a big impact, it's amazing. It's inspiring for women and hopefully it will help inspire women darts players in France."
Ladies darts is the big winner tonight.
Three-time BDO world champion Glen Durrant looked to still be in shock when he sat down in the press room and he openly admitted that the contest, which ended in a thrilling 6-6 draw, was by far the "toughest" game he has ever had to play in.
He refused the blame the 8,000-strong crowd, who gave Sherrock a vociferous backing, and instead heaped praise on Sherrock's ability to perform on the big stage.
"I've always tried to champion women's darts," said 49-year-old Durrant from Middlesbrough. "Ladies darts is the big winner tonight. You've seen that Lisa has done (by gaining a PDC Tour card).
"I knew that Fallon had only been playing exhibitions since losing to Chris Dobey at the Worlds, while I felt quite fresh. But it just shows you how good she really is."
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Sherrock has shown that she is more than comfortable competing with men, but it's all well and good playing exhibitions for now until she makes appearances at the UK Open and World Series of Darts events later this year.
The need for regular competitive darts must be the next logical step if there is to be progression in the women's game.
With Lisa Ashton, Mikuru Suzuki, Deta Hedman, Lorraine Winstanley, Anastasia Dobromyslova and Beau Greaves all putting the women's game on the map, is now the time for a PDC women's tour?
"If there was a women's tournament, I'd happily support it," said Sherrock. "I mean, us women can compete against men so if we just have more opportunities I'm sure that would be enough but if they put on a tour, then that would be great.
"Women's darts is stronger than it's ever been so hopefully now we get more opportunities to show how strong we can be."
But should a woman competing against a man at darts be such a surprise, though? Should it not be seen as common place. After all, it is 2020.
"I just think if we had more opportunities to prove ourselves then it wouldn't be like so big if that makes sense because you would see it so often and the crowd would see it as a normal game," said Sherrock.
"Getting it to the point of being normal is important."
Sherrock also spoke of how she has helped expand the game, having now become one of the most talked-about sportswomen in the world.
"I'm aware that it's expanding across the world, but I don't think it's hit me yet as to how big it has actually got, so my feet are literally still on the ground now," she said. "I'm trying not to get too overwhelmed by it all, but I'm so proud to have helped make the game of darts so massive and now everyone is talking about it across the world."
Sherrock added how important it was to follow in Lisa Ashton's footsteps by gaining a PDC Tour card before even contemplating making a return to the Premier League as one of the main stars.
But it serves as food for thought for the Milton Keynes star, who has given the game of darts the breath of fresh air it needed as it continues its transition into a new era.
Night Three, February 20: Motorpoint Arena, Cardiff
|Peter Wright||vs||Rob Cross|
|Jonny Clayton||vs||Michael Smith|
|Michael van Gerwen||vs||Nathan Aspinall|
|Daryl Gurney||vs||Gerwyn Price|
|Glen Durrant||vs||Gary Anderson|
Coverage of the Premier League continues on Thursday, February 20 in Cardiff at 7pm on Sky Sports Action & Sky Sports Main Event with Jonny 'The Ferret' Clayton up against Michael Smith. Don't forget, the coverage continues every Thursday through until the Play-Offs in London on May 21.