Published On: Thu, May 9th, 2024
Sports | 2,767 views

Luke Littler caught up in Man Utd and Leeds rivalry as teen makes gesture to fan | Other | Sport

Luke Littler could not resist the opportunity to be the pantomime villain on Night 15 of Premier League Darts. The teenage sensation received a hostile reception from the Leeds crowd, with his love for Manchester United landing him in hot water.

The Nuke has never shied away from speaking out about his love for the Red Devils, having crossed paths with Sir Alex Ferguson at Old Trafford previously and being offered the chance to play with some current United stars.

The 17-year-old cruised to victory in his quarter-final clash with Peter Wright to book his spot in the final four, though his antics in the early stages of the clash meant that he did not receive too much support from those in attendance.

Littler walked out to a chorus of boos on Thursday night, and he only fuelled the fire by gesturing to his ears on several occasions. The heckles showed no signs of slowing during his practice throws either, with the teen having his train of thought drowned out by the home crowd when he stepped up to the oche.

Responding to those boos, Littler again cupped his ear as a response to the jeers before rolling his eyes.

Despite his emphatic 6-1 victory, it was a night to forget for the teen overall as he was dumped out of the competition by Michael Van Gerwen in the next round – meaning that he has been forced to wait to confirm his spot at the top of the Premier League Darts table.

Littler and Van Gerwen have played out some very tight contests in weeks gone by, but it was total domination from the latter on Thursday night. The Dutch star won a 26-dart leg to secure a 6-1 win, though he was ultimately beaten by hometown hero Luke Humphries.

Littler’s performance against Van Gerwen was uncharacteristically underwhelming compared to his high standards, and his recent comments about tiredness could spark some fears of tiredness creeping into his game.

He said: “It’s very tough. We are coming home after whatever Premier League, waking up at stupid o’clock to go to a Euro Tour. If I win on the Friday and Saturday, I can focus then on the Sunday. It’s breathtaking travelling to all these places. I’ve learnt a lot over the first four or five months of the season. I now know what else is coming.”

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