Former darts world champion reveals some players are ‘ANNOYED’ at Luke Littler’s rapid rise in the sport… but jokes that his ‘pockets get full’ every time the 17-year-old gets mentioned

  • Darts star Luke Littler has enjoyed a rapid rise to stardom in recent months
  • Littler will face Michael Smith in the semifinals of the play-offs on Thursday
  • Smith has revealed why players should not be upset about the success he is receiving

Luke Littler’s meteoric rise has irritated some of his rivals, according to former world darts champion Luke Littler.

The 17-year-old has made rapid progress in the sport, reaching the final of the World Darts Championship at the age of 16 and sits top of the Premier League Darts leaderboard after recording four victories.

Michael Smith will face Littler in the play-off semi-finals at the 02 Arena on Thursday.

Ahead of their meeting, the 2023 world champion has revealed that some players are annoyed with Littler but insists they should not worry about the chances he is getting.

According to the Independenthe said, “There are some who get upset about it, but listen, my pockets fill up every time he’s mentioned.

Luke Littler has irritated some of his rivals because of his success, according to Michael Smith

Smith joked that his

Smith joked that his “pockets get full” every time Littler is mentioned and says other players shouldn’t worry about his success

‘I think they’re getting irritated. I had it last year (after winning the world championship), Littler gets it all now.”

He added: ‘All the people in their 70s, 80s, 90s have to think about is that their money is going to keep going higher and higher. The more this kid plays we’ll get better sponsors, hopefully Eddie (Hearn) will put the prize money up again, £1,000 to £1,500 on the ProTour.

‘My money keeps increasing because a child does it for me. I’m not annoyed and neither should the other players, the boy is doing nothing wrong.

‘People are annoyed that he got into the Premier League and I can say there are a few guys in the top 16 who are annoyed. But he’s going to pocket so much money for us.”

Littler has become the most recognizable face in the darts world and his immediate success pushed darts into the mainstream.

Smith credited Littler with helping the sport reach a point where only Premier League football in Britain gets ‘better viewing figures’.

Smith, who became world champion in 2023, will face Littler in the semi-finals of the play-offs on Thursday

Smith, who became world champion in 2023, will face Littler in the semi-finals of the play-offs on Thursday

Ahead of their semi-final next week, Littler had the chance to win a record-breaking fifth night of Premier League darts in Sheffield on Thursday.

The evening’s semi-final saw Littler take on Smith, and despite racing into a 4-1 lead, Smith got back into the match and snuck through to the final by winning six legs to five.

Smith would defeat Luke Humphries in the final to earn his place in the play-offs.