The Check Out (Darts World May 2020 Issue 569) this month featured a heartfelt piece from the magazine’s editorial team, dartsworld.com thought it deserved a wider audience!
The Covid-19 Outbreak cannot be said to have very many positives. Yet, those involved in the game of darts, and its many related groupings, have shown remarkable adaptability and resilience during the Corona crisis. From players forming ad hoc leagues through to the major brands retaining staff and attempting to carry-on regardless (where safe and possible to do so). Much of the darts ecosystem has responded strongly and the sport has been shown in a very positive light.
Early on, there were various social media delights to enjoy, the three bulls game and even the loo roll challenge provided some light relief and a place to come together in a spirit of making the best of hard times.
Many channels offered increased practice content for those with more time on their hands. winmau.com re-boosted their practice zone and those with a web presence such as GoDartsPro.com and even dartsworld.com got very creative with new games and tips for structure and enjoyment.
Several brands concentrated on the community element of darts with remote tournaments, and virtual competitions, of various sorts. The dartsplanet.tv boys offered a combination of darts, banter, giveaways and fun competitions to keep their audience entertained and focused.
As always, many in our wider darts family began to raise funds for deserving causes, particularly the NHS, who needed the help more than ever, Chris Mason led the way raising thousands through memorabilia auctions and competitions.
As time moved on several brands have launched live darts events to satisfy our craving for competitive sporting action with Modus leading the way. Their Icons of Darts events allowed players of such stature Paul Nicholson and Mark Webster to mix it with up and coming stars such as Red Dragon’s David Evans. The Remote Darts League joined the fray and gave the opportunity to more players. Tony O Shea, Daryl Fitton are battling it out with Andy Jenkins and James Richardson and many more.
The PDC, who had shown themselves to be professional and proportionate in their management of the situation, then announced the Unibet Home Tour! Offering every Pro Tour cardholder the chance to compete in a month-long, nightly competition. So far it has proven a great success. Shocks and great moments have abounded, Peter Wright and Gerwyn price were heavily defeated and Lisa Ashton claimed a strong win over Mickey Mansell. But perhaps the best moment of the rapidly assembled league was Luke Woodhouse’s 9-darter from his Bewdley kitchen!
Here at Darts World we rushed to provide more practise tips, and get our Freemium magazine archive operational, to provide entertainment and information whilst people where in relative isolation.
It is possible that even the BDO have managed to salvage something from such bad times. Their remote meeting, on April 19th, has enabled the troubled organisation to assemble a competent looking board and begin to plan on protecting the BICC county darts structure for the future.
We suspect that many other sports will be looking at darts with envious eyes right now. Within a couple of weeks, the professional and amateur branches of the game have re-booted their systems and managed to serve their respective communities very impressively. There is even a scheduled Drive-In Darts Gala!
In addition, the media and commercial ecosystem, that surrounds our sport, have adapted swiftly and efficiently to ensure that they should be able to see out these troubled times and rebound with momentum when we are released from the COVID climate.
Darts has shown itself to be resilient, determined, and remarkably flexible at the same time as being sensible and compassionate.
All at Darts World feel that it’s worth tipping our hat to all those involved, at any level, who have gone above and beyond in unprecedented times.
Thankyou all and well done indeed!
Original article appears in the latest issue of Darts World Magazine (569)
Over 50 Issues including the most recent are available Free (during these times) here: https://www.dartsworld.com/freemium-registration/