Australian star Kyle Anderson passes away aged 33

Australian darts star Kyle Anderson has passed away at the age of 33.

Anderson proved a trailblazer for the sport as Australia’s first Aboriginal professional darts player when he progressed through PDC Qualifying School and moved to the UK in 2014.

The Perth ace followed and lived his darting dream, hitting two televised nine-darters and picking up the Auckland Masters title in 2017.

Anderson relinquished his PDC Tour Card in January 2020 and returned to live with his family in Australia.

It was announced on Tuesday morning that he had passed away.

His breakthrough came at the 2012 Oceanic Masters when he claimed the title to qualify for a debut World Championship appearance later that year.

After winning seven events on the DPA circuit the following year to top the Order of Merit, Anderson returned to Alexandra Palace and exploded into life with a sensational nine-dart finish against Ian White.

His Q School mission a month later was completed on the first day as he secured his Tour Card and settled in Nottingham.

After reaching two major televised Quarter-Finals, ‘The Original’ broke into the top 32 on the PDC Order of Merit for the first time in 2016.

A year later, his career-defining moment came at the Auckland Masters on the World Series just a week after winning his first ranking title at Players Championship 17.

Wins over Gary Anderson, Simon Whitlock, James Wade and Corey Cadby saw him clinch glory in front of the TV cameras for the first time.

A second televised nine-darter followed just months later at the European Championship as he reached the Semi-Finals before losing out to Michael van Gerwen in a thrilling last-leg decider.

Anderson continued to compete on the circuit in 2018 and 2019 , reaching the Third Round of the World Championship for the first time in his penultimate appearance.

A proud family man, Anderson returned to Queensland at the start of the Covid-19 pandemic last March and welcomed the birth of his second child.

He relinquished his Tour Card as world number 60 in February 2021 and said: “I have had a great seven years in the PDC but I have a new child on the way next month, so it’s only fair that I give my Tour Card up so that another rising star can try to achieve their dream.”

Anderson was a hugely popular figure among players and fans alike, and tributes have poured in across social media.

 

Kyle Anderson resigns his PDC Tour Card

Kyle Anderson has resigned his PDC Tour Card and will remain in Australia, ending his six-year stint on the professional circuit.

Anderson has been based back in Queensland since returning from the UK last March, recovering from Covid-19.

The 33-year-old had dropped to 60th in the PDC Order of Merit as a result of his absence from competitive action, and with his second child due to be born later this year, has opted to withdraw from the tour.

“After playing in today’s DPA event and with the ongoing pandemic, I had another long chat with my management with the outcome being to relinquish my Tour Card with immediate effect,” said Anderson.

“I have had a great seven years in the PDC but I have a new child on the way next month, so it’s only fair that I give my Tour Card up so that another rising star can try to achieve their dream.

“I would like to thank the PDC for the amazing opportunity that I had been given, and I will hopefully be seeing everyone again in the World Series in Australia.”

Anderson’s manager Mark Elkin added: “Kyle has sacrificed so much over the last seven years, only seeing his family two or three times a year, and this finally took its toll on him.

“We have had numerous talks about his Tour Card and he was determined to come back.

“I think today’s decision has just taken a huge weight off his shoulders, he has our blessing and will always be part of our team. We will be keeping a close eye on him on the DPA Tour.”

Anderson’s withdrawal means that Dutchman Maik Kuivenhoven will retain his Tour Card for 2021 as the highest-ranked player to drop off the circuit following the World Championship.

Anderson came through Qualifying School in 2014, becoming the PDC’s first Aboriginal Australian professional, and secured his first ranking title on the ProTour in 2017

His first televised title came at the Auckland Darts Masters that same year as he defeated fellow Aussie Corey Cadby 11-10 in the final.

The first of The Original’s two televised nine-darters famously came at the 2013/14 World Championship at Alexandra Palace, before striking perfection again in the Semi-Finals of the 2017 European Championship.

Anderson becomes the second player to relinquish their Tour Card ahead of the new season, joining Harry Ward.

Kyle Anderson tests positive for Coronavirus

Kyle Anderson has tested positive for Covid-19 after recently returning home to Australia.

Anderson travelled home from the UK ten days ago alongside his close friend and fellow PDC professional Damon Heta in order to spend time with family during the enforced break in competition.

A statement from Anderson’s management – the Sportsman Management Company – revealed the 32-year-old has contracted Coronavirus and is self-isolating in a farm house.

His manager Mac Elkin said: “I have just had a FaceTime call off Kyle telling me he tested positive for Covid-19, he is in good spirits but is now back in isolation on his own in a farm house in Mount Morgan.

“Tara and Charles both tested negative and are both back in the family home. I will be having regular calls with Kyle so will keep everybody updated.

“It goes without saying that we all wish him a speedy recovery but it also stresses the need to follow the guidelines set out by the government, we need to beat this disease together as one.”

The world number 45 skipped the opening four Players Championship events of the season in favour of an extended spell in his homeland following the end of last season.

He returned to action on February 22 and featured in the UK Open and a further ProTour weekend before making the decision to fly back to Perth.

Permitted social gatherings in Australia have been reduced from ten to two people in bid to slow the spread of Coronavirus.

Australians are also being urged to stay at home with a limited number of exceptions.

Live Darts would like to wish Kyle all the best for his recovery.

Kyle Anderson reveals he has considered quitting darts amid homesickness heartbreak

Kyle Anderson has revealed he contemplated ending his darts career earlier this year after struggling to cope with being away from his family in Australia.

Anderson relocated to the UK in 2014 after securing a PDC Tour Card at Qualifying School and has remained there since, leaving his wife and son behind in Perth.

The 32-year-old has made several visits back to his homeland between tournaments, while also competing in the World Series on home soil, but admits the emotional toll has left him considering his future in the sport, having even distributed his CV.

In a raw interview following his First Round comeback win over Xiaochen Zong at the William Hill World Championship, Anderson opened up on his emotional turmoil and the impact the separation has had on his mental health.

“It’s a struggle for me lately because I want to be home, but at the same time this is my profession, this is my job,” said Anderson.

“When it doesn’t work out, the demons come forward, like Raymond [Van Barneveld] said the other day, when the demons show themselves it’s quite hard not to see them every time you go to the board.

“At 2-0 down [versus Zong] I was thinking of the next flight home, I’ll sit at the back in the cargo if I had to, just get me home.

“I’ve contemplated going home a couple of times, this game has caught up with me being away from home, and the heartfelt emotion I have from inside, trying to be a man and not letting everyone see your emotion, it’s starting to come forward and control everything I do.

“Three weeks is the longest I’ve had at home barring the visa incident, which was a couple of months.

“I even spoke to a mate and put a CV out.

“I’ve got no money, no one to fall back on if my car breaks down, so I can’t get picked up, it’s all of the things you don’t think about when you do it.

“In October when I was coming home, I flew from Rockhampton to Brisbane, walked through customs and went and sat at the gate and text Mac [manager] and said ‘If I wasn’t through customs I’d be handing my resignation in.

“I just wanted to be home, it’s hard.”

Kyle Anderson pulled off a gusty comeback win in Round One at Ally Pally (Photo by Lawrence Lustig/PDC)

Anderson has also been forced to contend with a number of health problems of late, including eyesight issues and being diagnosed with diabetes.

He has consequently struggled for consistency on the oche this season, dropping out of the world’s top 32 after failing to qualify for a number of televised majors and failing to progress beyond the Last 16 stage of a ranked tournament since February.

Anderson hopes the arrival of his childhood friend Damon Heta to the UK in January will help restore some familiarity and re-ignite his career.

He added: “With Damon [Heta] coming across, that might change because I’ve asked him to come stay near me so we can keep in touch because we were best friends at school.

“We’ve already talked about being close together so it will feel like home.

“No one on this tour has done what I’ve done so no one understands what I’m going through.

“All respect for Luke Humphries with his anxiety, I gave him a shoulder to lean on, but what Luke went through has got nothing on what I went through.

“I just keep it to myself because I’ve been brought up that way not to talk about things like that, not that it makes you feel weak but your problems are your problems, not someone else’s.

“There’s always hope, I can’t tell the future but if I could, I’d go back and forth.

“If I won the Worlds I’d just go home and catch up on time. I’m playing catch up not just with my wife but with my son.”