Women have been visible at darts events for over 80 years; however, the success of Englishwoman Fallon Sherrock at the male-dominated Professional Darts Corporation (PDC) events placed the sport into the global spotlight in the early 2020s. Sherrock’s successes have been a catalyst, bringing increased exposure to women players competing in mixed draw professional darts tournaments against their male counterparts. This led to the creation of the PDC Women’s Series and six-figure total prize funds, alongside a variety of increasingly prominent roles for women in media circles within the sport. Theoretically, the paper draws on gender essentialism and Kane’s sports continuum to consider how the sport can challenge notions of men’s ‘natural’ superiority. We argue that more research is needed in areas such as: the rise of women players in professional sports tournaments where physical attributes are not necessarily a barrier to participation; the changing roles of women in media and broadcasting; and strategies to strive for gender equity.
Senior Lecturer in Events Management, Department of Finance, Performance and Marketing, Teesside University, United Kingdom
WOMEN, DARTS, SPORT, GENDER, EQUALITY
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