Luke Littler gave a big hint that he was going to take the sports world by storm when he was just three years old.
The 16-year-old from Warrington enjoyed a historic run to the semi-finals of the World Cup at Alexandra Palace, becoming the youngest player ever to do so.
Nicknamed 'The Nuke', he is just two wins away from creating one of the greatest sports stories of all time.
He was always a star when videos surfaced of him throwing darts as a toddler and mimicking Raymond Van Barneveld's famous celebration after winning the 2007 world title.
Littler was born just 20 days after that famous fight with Phil Taylor at the Circus Tavern, so few would have expected him to beat the Dutchman on his way to the last four of this year's tournament.
But the way he destroyed his hero in the last 16 years showed that his breakthrough was no fluke.
He qualified for the tournament by winning the World Youth Championship in November after a successful year on the Development Tour and that was another big sign that he is destined for the top.
🗣️ “I could average 70-80, it's just about crossing the line.”
Listen to 16-year-old sensation Luke Littler after securing a place in the 2023/24 World Cup semi-finals here at Ally Pally! pic.twitter.com/bAh4tkrKgB
— PDC Darts (@OfficialPDC) 1 January 2024
In his early years, he loved playing football and is an ardent fan Manchester Unitedbut when his father Anthony recognized his talent on the ocha, he told his son to give up football at the age of nine and the rest is history.
It is hard to imagine Littler – who also enjoys rugby league and supports local club Warrington – returning to the typical 16-year-old he was before the tournament started.
He enjoyed playing on his Xbox, FaceTiming friends and eating kebabs, but after his exploits in North London, a different world awaits him no matter what happens in the next 48 hours.
He has achieved celebrity status and his exploits have already transcended the world of darts.
He had pictures and exchanged messages with a number of top Premier League footballers, while the media were intensely interested in him and what kind of kebabs he liked to eat.
Having secured a £100,000 payout and a PDC travel card for the next two years, it is clear that Littler will now be eating at the top of the darts.
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