History was made at Alexandra Palace last night, as the teenage prodigy became the youngest player ever to reach the final of the World Darts Championship, crushing 2018 winner Rob Cross 6-2.
The Nuke is now on the cusp of producing one of the greatest sporting stories of all time, with only new world number one Luke Humphries standing in his way of collecting the £500,000 first prize.
While the attention on his sporting prowess has been exclusively positive, Littler has been forced to contend with his private life being the focus of unlikely scrutiny and in particular his relationship with his 21-year-old partner.
The pair are said to have been dating for six weeks after they met playing FIFA on the Xbox.
Given the five-year age-gap, the Milburn family, and Eloise in particular, an amateur darts player herself, have been targeted by online trolls accusing them of being money grabbers.
Speaking to MailOnline, Amanda Milburn, 56, Eloise’s mother hit back, saying: ‘There’s been a lot of horrible stuff being posted online about my daughter and my husband Phil and I are very angry about it.
‘Eloise has been accused of all sorts and that she’s only with Luke because of his money and fame. But that’s a total pack of lies and disgusting. She’s not with him for any of these reasons. She doesn’t care about his money or his fame, she’s with him because she likes him. It’s as simple as that.’
She added: ‘It’s really hurtful when we read these comments, many of them from so called darts fans.
‘My daughter is none of these things that these vile people are making out. She’s a lovely young girl who is in a new relationship and people should allow them to get on with things.
‘Eloise has made it clear that she doesn’t want us going because she thinks things are still at an early stage between her and Luke.
‘They’re in a growing relationship, not a very serious one although that might come later.
‘I have asked her for tickets because me and Phil would love to see Luke in action, but Eloise just says: ‘Mum, please, I don’t want you meeting him just yet, it’s too soon.’
‘I’ve never been to the World Darts Championship, and you would have thought that I’d be able to get a ticket now that my daughter is dating Luke, but sadly that’s not the case.’
Luke and Eloise plan to go away on holiday later this week and are also looking forward to spending time with their families.
Ms Milburn, who is yet to meet Luke in person, added: ‘They’ll need a bit of privacy once all this is over but more than anything, I just want people to stop saying horrible things and let them get on with their new relationship.’
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