Next week will see the return of Players Championship action with the PDC Summer Series beginning the darting restart and according to Chief Executive Matthew Porter, a near full quota will be involved in Milton Keynes in terms of Tour Card Holders.

Talking on the MDA Promotions live stream on Wednesday night, Porter gave an update on current entry numbers and what he expects it to be in the end when the deadline is reached later today.

“We’ve had 108 Tour Card holders enter so far. Some of the guys who haven’t entered have already booked their hotels so they’re obviously going to get round to it. We think it will be tough for the Aussie lads Kyle Anderson and Damon Heta to get back, that might be a step too far,” said Porter.

“Jeff Smith and Kai Fan Leung the other two Tour Card holders who are long haul distance away, they’re expecting to be there. There might be a couple of the European players who may have work commitments or are reluctant to travel.

But if I was to put a figure on it, I’d say 122 of the Tour Card Holders will play and then we will go down the usual route of the Challenge Tour.”

Scott Mitchell who is the leader on the Challenge Tour Order of Merit tweeted on Wednesday that he had received an invite. While Jitse van der Wal has been invited to play in all five, he was swiftly followed by Arjan Konterman so a minimum of eight Challenge Tour players will seemingly be involved.

On the Summer Series – “The hardest event we’ve ever had to arrange”

With all the COVID-19 measures and precautions that especially come with the bubble environment, Porter also discussed the challenges of arranging the Summer Series and making it as safe as possible for all players.

“I was saying to someone the other day we’ve put events on in Shanghai, Tokyo, Johannesburg, Singapore, outposts of Australia but unquestionably the Summer Series has been the hardest event we’ve ever had to arrange,” he added.

“The challenges we’ve faced, the amount of hoops we’ve had to jump through and regulations we’ve had to follow. No issue with doing any of it at all but obviously a lot responsibility on us because the pressure is on us to get it right for the players. As much as they are chomping at the bit to come back and play competitively, they want to do so in a safe environment.”

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Author: Samuel Gill