BetMGM Premier League Play-Offs to feature record crowd at London's O2

BetMGM Premier League Play-Offs (Kieran Cleeves/PDC)

The 2024 BetMGM Premier League Play-Offs will feature the PDC's UK record crowd of 14,000 fans at The O2 in London tonight, as the global darts boom continues.
The culmination of the biggest-ever Premier League season sees Luke Littler, Luke Humphries, Michael van Gerwen and Michael Smith competing for the prestigious title in the Play-Offs, to round off 17 weeks of thrilling action.

This year's event, which began in Cardiff on February 1 and has visited arenas across the UK, Ireland, Germany and Netherlands, has attracted over 150,000 fans - a record since the Premier League's inception in 2005.

In addition, Thursday's finale at The O2 will see a Premier League record crowd of 14,000 fans, which is also the PDC's biggest-ever UK attendance.

The Premier League's popularity follows the record-breaking ticket sales encountered for the 2023/24 World Darts Championship and 2024 World Matchplay, which both sold out of standard tickets in just 24 hours.

The sport's global popularity has also soared over the past six months, following a hugely successful World Championship which saw new world number one Humphries deny teenage sensation Littler in the final.

That event drew a record audience of an incredible 4.8 million for Sky Sports – their highest ever non-football audience – and the broadcaster has also seen interest maintained with record Premier League viewing figures this season.

Entries for the opening two Winmau Development Tour weekends of 2024, for players aged 16-23, are up by 39% compared to the same period in 2023, and the Junior Darts Corporation are also experiencing unprecedented interest.

The JDC runs a junior circuit alongside global JDC Academies, with 32 new Academies opening in the past year - a 60% increase - and double the number of registered players amid a surge in youngsters looking to follow in the footsteps of Littler, a two-time JDC Junior World Champion.

"The sport is riding the crest of a wave at the moment and the momentum created by the huge success of the World Darts Championship has been maintained throughout the first five months of 2024," said PDC Chief Executive Matt Porter.

"The BetMGM Premier League season has experienced record interest from fans attending, watching through Sky Sports and our global broadcast partners and media, and we're all excited for Thursday's Play-Offs between four wonderful players.

"We've seen an upward curve in the popularity of darts since emerging from the Covid-19 pandemic, but recent months have been a huge acceleration of interest globally.

"After the Premier League finishes, June will feature World Series of Darts events in New York, Copenhagen and Poland, which have all sold more tickets than last year, ahead of visits to Australia and New Zealand in August as fans across the world clamour to see the top players live in their region.

"The World Championship captured the imagination and has also brought a new generation of fans to the sport - whether that be watching or now taking up the sport.

"With participation levels rising, fans snapping up tickets in record numbers and darts manufacturers such as Winmau reporting record sales - particularly in the UK - the sport has never been as healthy."