Mike van Duivenbode has announced he will be taking an indefinite break from PDC darts due to an arm injury.
Van Duivenbode, 21, is one of the youngest players on the PDC circuit, having won his Tour Card at European Qualifying School in January 2019.
The Dutchman previously enjoyed success on the Development Tour, claiming two titles in 2017, with victories over Dimitri van den Bergh and Adam Hunt in the respective finals.
He found the transition tough in his first few months as a professional, picking up no prize money in his first nine Players Championship events.
Van Duivenbode began to find his feet at the back end of 2019 and has now reached the Last 32 on the ProTour on five occasions to date.
However, he has been struggling with a persistent arm injury which has hampered his progress, and after managing just one win in the five recent Summer Series events, the youngster has decided to step away from the sport for the time being.
Van Duivenbode announced the decision on Facebook, posting: ‘Unfortunately I will have to leave the arrows for a longer period. I’m so sorry and it hurts me a lot but there is no other choice right now.
‘Long story short it takes a lot of pain effort and energy to darts full time. The arm just hasn’t cooperated for a while, and then you have to start thinking and make the decision.
‘Had a lot of beautiful years with lots of ups and lots of downs as well.
‘For my feeling I need to take some rest now to get my body restored and come back stronger and fitter.
‘All in all, this is no loss. This is not giving up. This is a conscious choice with a lot of thought behind it.
‘I don’t know how long it will take. Could be months, could be years. But someday I will be back, the Pigeon will be back.’
Van Duivenbode’s place in the PDC Autumn Series, which takes place in Hildesheim from September 12-16, is likely to be taken by a top-up from the Challenge Tour Order of Merit.