Devon Petersen outlines his ambition for the development of darts within Africa


2:43 An emotional Petersen admits he’s been missing his family while being on the road touring on the darting circuit

Carolissen received a bye through to the second round before succumbing 3-1 to Danny Noppert, although he has been tipped to eclipse Petersen’s successes by the man himself.

“I think Cameron has the ability to exceed what I have achieved here,” added the reigning German Darts champion.

“Everything else starts with a first step and I think that now with Cameron experiencing this and having that first taste of the stage – I remember when I experienced that.

“It made my hunger even bigger and now it means that he is going to work harder. I know he works hard regardless and that’s a South African trait and just a cultural trait itself.

“I know he will work hard and probably exceed what I have achieved so far. I’m always here for him and I wish him all the best.”

The pair claimed the opening round scalp of fourth seeds Northern Ireland, which sparked euphoric celebrations from youth players in Mitchell’s Plains, with the clip going viral on social media among the darting community.

Petersen’s Last Man Standing competition has already unearthed potential gems, but he believes an African Tour is the next step to cultivate the stars of the future.

The PDC’s commitment to developing the global game has seen the launch of an Asian Tour and a Nordic & Baltic Tour over recent years, which has contributed to unprecedented participation within the respective regions.

‘The African Warrior’ concedes that any immediate prospect of darts becoming a professional sport in South Africa is unlikely, but he has vowed to ‘take that mantle and push forward’.

“Ultimately it’s been in the making and we’re slowly progressing towards it [African Tour],” Petersen continued.

“You can see the grassroots – Cameron Carolissen, we had Vernon Bouwers, we had Warrick Scheffer – all these young players coming through which is fantastic.

“I think that we are now at the point where we can actually push for it [African Tour]. These players have the motivation to actually come over and participate in Q School. That is where we want to be.

“We want to have representation at Q School so we can have players that have the opportunity to actually experience the tour, and then obviously playing and qualifying for big tournaments like the World Championship.

“This will then just grow the sport and make the sport more of a profile sport within the schooling system which obviously bridges the gap between sport that is played in pubs, and sport that is seen as a sport.

“It’s potentially a bridge that can be crossed as a professional sport in South Africa. I think that we are long leaps and steps away from that. We still need to forge forward and I am happy to take that mantle and push forward.”

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