A TEENAGER from Plymouth has his eyes on becoming a professional darts player after enjoying a successful debut for England.
Plymouth Studio School’s Keelan Kay won both his matches and was voted player of the tournament in Bradford as he helped the England boys’ team to victory against Wales and Scotland.
The 15-year-old has only been playing darts competitively for two seasons but already tops the under-18 England rankings on county averages. He has only lost one game in two years playing for Devon.
The Eggbuckland youngster admitted it was a great feeling representing his country for the first time.
“It was amazing – one of the best experiences of my life,” said the teenager.
“I was a little bit nervous, but once I started throwing I was fine.”
Kay hopes he can continue to progress and make it all the way to the top.
When asked what his ultimate ambition was in the sport, he said: “I would like to try and become world champion.”
The 15-year-old does not come from a darts family and it was only by chance he got into the sport.
“Keelan just asked if we could get a dart board so we can have a mess around at home and it just went from there,” said his dad, Marc.
“After only a couple of days just messing around I realised he could throw a dart better than any of us already. That was when he was 12.
“He has only been playing darts for about three years, and only competitively for two.
“We can’t believe the progress he’s made within two years. It’s absolutely unbelievable.
“None of our family have played darts, so where the ability has come from we are not sure.”
When his family realised he had a talent they looked for ways to try and develop it.
He initially went down to Porters Bar on the Barbican who were running a youth league but that ended, which is when he got involved with Devon County Youth.
“He only lost one game for Devon last season and this season, which started in September 2016, he is currently unbeaten and is ranked number one under-18 player in England on the ranking tables,” added his dad.
Kay will compete overseas for the first time in July when he travels with the England team to the European Cup. There is also the chance, if England can get financial backing, that they will send a team to the World Cup in Japan in October.
The city teenager is in his first year at the Plymouth Studio School, who are helping him with his sport.
“They are phenomenal,” said his dad. “They just support and encourage all children who have a lot of ability in a chosen sport. It is massively helping him.”