WILTSHIRE’S darts players are gearing up for the biggest tournament on the local calendar but help is needed to help continue the growth of the sport in the county.
The Wiltshire Open is being held at the Ferndale Working Men’s Club on April 5, and is set to feature the best players the county has to offer including reigning champion Dennis Smith and his fellow PDC regulars Johnny Haines, Chris Aubrey and Mark Cox.
The event has switched from its former home at the Phoenex Bar in Wootton Bassett to its new Ferndale Road base, and is in desperate need of sponsorship to help not only run the tournament but also to help fund the future of darts in Wiltshire.
“We’re a self-funded organisation although we do get a bit of sponsorship from the clubs we play in,” Wiltshire Darts secretary Keith Little said. “We had played at the Phoenex Bar in Wootton Bassett but we’ve moved to Ferndale, although we’ve not received any money from them yet as they are waiting to see if it’s worth their while us being there.
“We have to raise money ourselves, and we do that with raffles and other things with the Wiltshire Open being our biggest money earner most years. We need the money to pay for the travel and hotels of our players for our players throughout the season, and we also have to pay the BDO to send players to competitions.
“We need this open to bring the revenue in to keep the players happy because, believe it or not, if we didn’t pay for hotels and travel then a lot of players wouldn’t play and that would be bad for the game of darts in Wiltshire.
“That’s why this open is a big thing for us and why we need some sponsors to help us.”