Luke Littler’s stunning Players Championship win ‘takes huge pressure off’

Luke Littler has won another title in a dream start to life in the PDC (Picture: Getty Images)

Luke Littler made the perfect Players Championship debut by winning the first of the season on Monday in Wigan, nailing a 9-darter along the way and taking ‘huge pressure off’ in his bid to make a World Matchplay debut this season.

The 17-year-old was in sparkling form as he won seven matches in the day to claim the title and the £15,000 top prize.

The teenager landed a 9-darter in his last 32 victory over Michele Turetta and narrowly missed a second in his last 16 win over Cameron Menzies as he brushed aside the competition until the latter stages.

Things were tighter in the semi-finals, where he beat Alan Soutar 7-6 and then in an epic final as he downed Ryan Searle 8-7, averaging over 109 while Heavy Metal averaged over 111!

In any player’s first season on tour it is no small task to qualify for the World Matchplay and World Grand Prix through the ProTour Order of Merit, but by winning the first Players Championship of the season, Littler is in very good shape to do so.

‘I know my game is there, I know I can beat anyone, and I’m really happy to have won. The Development Tour really helped me. I can throw really well on the floor as well as on the stage,’ he said.

‘Me and my manager know what I have to do to qualify for the World Matchplay and the World Grand Prix. I’ve got about 13 or 14 ProTours before the World Matchplay, but it’s always good to get off to a good start.

‘I want to try and qualify for everything, I have to play the floor tournaments to try and qualify for everything else.

‘It takes huge pressure off because I don’t want to be going to the last few before the Matchplay having to win one or two of them. This has helped me even more now, I can settle and enjoy it.’

Littler admitted that the long day had drained him, but will be back on Tuesday trying to win Players Championship 2.

‘I’ve not really got any goals for this year, I just want to see where it goes. My game’s there, I know I can win one of these, which I have done on my first attempt,’ he said.

‘Last leg, you’ve just got to give it your all. I’m tired now, I can’t wait to get into bed, but it’s all about that last leg and giving it your all.

‘If I win it tomorrow then happy days but this has boosted me.’


MORE : Luke Littler hits second nine-darter in a month on Players Championship debut


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