Humphries risks angering Luke Littler as world darts champion agrees with Taylor

Humphries risks angering Luke Littler as world darts champion agrees with Taylor

Luke Humphries has backed to be included in the eight-player Premier League shortlist after his heroics. Phil ‘The Power’ Taylor is also keen for the 16-year-old to be called up, but Littler himself recently suggested that the ‘gruelling’ nature of the competition could be a step too far at this stage of his career.

Humphries ended Littler’s fairytale Alexandra Palace run at the last hurdle, winning five sets in a row to clinch Wednesday’s thrilling final 7-4. ‘Cool Hand’ picked up the first world title of his career and solidified his status as world No. 1 in the process.

Darts fans around the globe were gunning for Littler to go all the way on his debut, having dispatched the likes of Raymond van Barneveld and Rob Cross en route to his meeting with Humphries.

But this may only be the start for the 2007-born prodigy, who has surged from outside the world’s top 150 into the top 32, which is set to grant him more opportunities to shine on the big stage.

The next major event on the 2024 darts calendar is the Premier League – a 17-week marathon which opens in Cardiff on February 1. The eight-player roster, made up of the top-four-ranked players in the world and four wildcards selected jointly by the PDC and Sky Sports, is due to be announced on Thursday.

And 16-time world champion Taylor believes that selecting Littler should be a ‘no-brainer‘ for organisers. Humphries agrees, telling Sky Sports after his World Darts Championship final triumph: “You will never see another 16-year-old kid like him.

Littler was asked about the possibility of fighting for the Premier League‘s £275,000 top prize during his run at the Ally Pally, but he didn’t seem convinced. “I’ve seen what the Premier League does,” he said.

“You’ll have Monday and Tuesday [on the] Pro Tour, Wednesday Euro Tour qualifiers, then Thursday Premier League, weekends Euro Tour so I think the PDC are going to keep me out of it because that would be just gruelling.”