PDC stars sample New York sights as Eddie Hearn plots US darts expansion

Some of the best-known players in darts have been sampling the sights of New York City ahead of this weekend’s US Masters at the legendary Madison Square Garden.

The Masters is the first event in the PDC’s World Series of Darts which takes in locations around the world, including Australia and New Zealand, before culminating in Amsterdam in September. Ahead of the tournament, which takes place on Friday and Saturday, the PDC representatives have out and about in New York and taking part in media engagements.

World champion Peter Wright, bedecked in his gregarious match entire, posed for a picture in front of the Flat Iron Building, while Fallon Sherrock did a spot of filming at Walter’s Bar near Penn Station. Michael Smith tweeted a picture in Times Squares, Jonny Clayton took in the sights from the top of the Empire State Building and James Wade went to watch the Yankees baseball team. Meanwhile, the PDC posted a picture of Michael van Gerwen, Gerwyn Price, Wade and Wright dining together.

The event in the Big Apple is seen as vital as the sports looks to make its mark on the lucrative American market. Speaking recently, PDC chairman Eddie Hearn said he was sure darts is ready to take off in the US.

“This event is the start of the American journey,” said Hearn, reported USA Today Sports. “Not only can everybody play darts, it’s more than that, the live spectacle is so much fun. I really believe it has great potential.”

Having promoted boxing stateside, Hearn is tuned into the American market and is sure sports fans will embrace the characters of the sport.

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“In a world where top sportsmen can be, quite frankly, a little arrogant and a little disjointed from the general public, these guys are our working-class heroes,” he said.

“They are normal people who have played this sport that is predominantly played in pubs and small leagues and have come through the system to start making millions of dollars a year, and they are grateful for it.

“It’s going to take time, but the best thing that’s going to happen is that if the US market just experiences it, they’re going to watch it. They’re going to cheer it and tune in. I feel like bringing it to New York to Madison Square Garden, knowing we’ll have a lot of Brits and ex-pats there as well, that the American audience will watch it and say, ‘This is crazy, we like this’.

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