The 16-year-old became the youngest player ever to reach the World Championship final, and although he came up short against Luke Humphries in the showpiece, his run grabbed the attention of the country, and even the world.
The Littler vs Humphries final smashed viewing records for darts on Sky Sports and his performances at Alexandra Palace have earned the teenager a place in the upcoming Premier League, the sport’s big-money invitational event.
Plenty of famous faces have enjoyed the story of the teenage debutant bludgeoning his way to the World Championship final, but none as famous as the former Manchester United and England midfielder.
Littler is a Red Devils fan himself, so it was extra special to receive a message from the iconic football superstar.
Asked what the best message of support he got was, Littler told Sky News: ‘It was before my final from David Beckahm, saying, “Good luck Luke, once a Red always a Red.”
‘I couldn’t believe it, it’s David Beckham! It was on Instagram, I saw it in my request box.
‘Luke Shaw messaged me saying good luck. Got a follow off the youngster Kobbie Mainoo, former player Jesse Lingard. It’s crazy to think about them watching me when I’ve been watching them for many, many years.’
Whether Littler would be included in the Premier League was up for some debate, but was ultimately an obvious decision for the PDC after the viewing figures he attracted at the World Championship.
The tournament is held every Thursday night from 1 February for 16 weeks, travelling the UK and Europe before the Play-Offs on 23 May in London.
There is some concern about the packed schedule Littler will face now on the professional circuit and thrown in at the deep end of the Premier League, but he said it was too good an opportunity to turn down.
‘As soon as I came off the stage, did the media and saw the family, my manager pulled me aside and said, “Do you want to do it?” I said, “Let’s do it, it might not happen again”,’ Littler told Sky of the Premier League offer.
‘I’ll probably have to take a break maybe from a few ProTours but I knew what was coming as soon as I said yes to the Premier League. This is just going to be an incredible experience.’
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