Dave Clark steps down from Sky Sports coverage

Dave Clark (Lawrence Lustig, PDC)

Dave Clark has announced that he is stepping down from his role as the presenter of Sky Sports' darts coverage.

The experienced broadcaster has fronted Sky Sports' coverage for almost two decades since succeeding Jeff Stelling in 2002.

Clark was originally a radio broadcaster who covered the Olympics and football's World Cup, before being part of the original Sky Sports News presentation team.

However, his role as Sky Sports' darts anchor has seen Clark oversee some of the sport's most memorable moments, including classic World Championship finals and Phil Taylor's two nine-darters in one game at the 2010 Premier League Play-Offs.

Clark was also inducted into the PDC Hall of Fame in 2018 to recognise his contribution to the sport.

The Yorkshireman was diagnosed with Parkinson's disease in 2011, and since revealing the news two years later has raised over £500,000 for Parkinson's UK and adopted a role as one of their celebrity supporters.

Announcing the news on Sunday evening, Clark said: "When I was diagnosed with Parkinson's a 'specialist' said I'd only be able to present live sport for two or three more years.

"Nearly a decade after that diagnosis, I can still present live television, on stage, in front of 10,000 people. I've decided I want to stop now, still in control, still able to do the job, still able to enjoy it.

"The last thing I want is for someone to throw in the towel for me or for darts fans to feel uncomfortable or sorry for me as my Parkinson's progresses.

"Lockdown has given us all a lot of time to think, on occasions too much time, but it's given me time to sort out my priorities. Family comes first.

"I'm keen to spend more days with my wife and two sons. Time is a real luxury that so many have been denied during this difficult period.

"I'm NOT giving up on life, just stopping doing the darts. I intend to keep busy, writing a book about my time presenting during some of the sport's greatest years.

"I'm hoping to stay involved in broadcasting in some capacity and will continue to raise awareness of Parkinson's and fundraising to find a cure through my chosen charity Parkinson's UK."

He added: "Sky have been very supportive over the years, it's 100% my decision to check out of the darts.

"I'm really proud to have launched Sky Sports News, anchored the darts throughout its meteoric rise and presented the boxing, including Ricky Hatton's biggest fights, some of Carl Froch's memorable nights and Anthony Joshua's pro debut.

"It's been a fabulous journey with some incredible people. It's not the end, just the start of the next chapter in my life."