Daryl Gurney: NI world number six sitting out PDC Home Tour series

Daryl Gurney
Gurney's best World Championship performance is a quarter-final appearance in 2017

Northern Ireland's Daryl Gurney is sitting out the PDC's innovative Home Tour series as the facilities at his house do not meet the regulations and rules laid down for the competition.

The event allows players with a tour card the chance to compete from their own homes with matches each evening.

"I wouldn't have minded playing to get my arm going again but I haven't got the room for it," explained Gurney.

"With people walking about the house it wouldn't be ideal," he added.

World-ranked number six Gurney continued: "You need to have a video going and it has to be quiet. With my sister working from home in the next room it just wouldn't comply with the rules the PDC put out.

"If I had nobody else in the house I would probably do it but I won't be watching - when I'm on a break from darts I take a total break from it.

"They are fortunate that darts is a one-man sport and that allows them to do this.

"The only thing that beats darts in terms of television viewing figures is Premier League football so they are trying to keep darts in the public eye."

'One foot in the bathroom, one foot in the hall'

The 34-year-old admits that he has not thrown a dart since competing in the most recent round of the Premier League on 12 March - an event which came just days after the Londonderry man reached the semi-finals of the UK Open in Minehead.

"I'll start practicing a month before we return to compete in the next tournament on the PDC Tour but for the moment I'm just enjoying life and spending time with my family and two-year-old son Daryl Jnr.

"I generally practice about two hours every night but my dart throw is the same as it was when I was 12, it has been the same since the day and hour I threw my first dart.

"I probably have the worst throw of all the top players. I just play at the top of the stairs with just the standard house light on.

"Most of the leading players have a proper room kitted out for the job with fancy lighting, a proper surround, a proper dart board and a proper oche.

"My dartboard is on the back of my bedroom door. I stand in the hall at the top of the stairs and I have one foot in the bathroom and one in the hall so if someone needs to go the bathroom I can't throw. There is definitely nothing fancy about it."

'Playing in front of big crowds what it is all about'

Gurney, winner of two major PDC titles to date - the 2017 World Grand Prix and 2018 Players Championship Finals - is pleased that the governing organisation opted not to hold tournaments behind closed doors.

"To be playing in front of the big crowds is what makes it good for us - whenever we throw the 180s, hit the big finishes, that's what it is all about.

"It wouldn't be the same playing in a massive arena with 10,000 people missing so for me I'm glad they have cancelled. For me if there was no crowd I wouldn't play.

"We need the crowd, that's what gets you practicing and motivated. That's why we put in the dedication and hard work to show we can play darts.

"I love playing in front of the big crowds. You can hear the reaction if someone is on for a nine-darter. They are really in tune with the games."

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