World Darts Championship: What happens should a player receive a positive Covid-19 test beforehand?
With the prestigious World Darts Championship swiftly approaching, and the current coronavirus pandemic still in full swing, what happens should a player test positive for Covid-19 ahead of the tournament?
Both two-time world champion Adrian Lewis and Stephen Bunting were obliged to withdraw from the World Grand Prix two months ago after fielding positive coronavirus tests.
Newly-crowned Premier League champion Glen Durrant and Dutch youngster Niels Zonneveld have also contracted the virus in recent months, forcing them to miss multiple tournaments.
Lewis and Bunting were replaced by the next highest ranked players in line on the necessary listings at the double-start event, with similar rules in place for the World Championship.
Following last month’s respective last chance qualifying events, reserve lists were formed through those who narrowly missed out in the final round at Coventry’s Ricoh Arena.
Matthew Edgar and Jamie Lewis were amongst those to come through the two PDPA Qualifiers for UK and Ireland and Rest of the World players separately, with an additional six players making up the reserves.
Two-time ranking event winner Josh Payne stands first in line should anyone withdraw through a positive Covid-19 result, closely followed by James Wilson.
Jan Dekker, Martin Schindler, Robert Thornton and Joe Murnan are slightly lower down the pecking order, with all four currently set to lose their professional status.
Players will be tested in the days leading up to their opening match of the tournament, and various other safety measures will be performed throughout the two-and-a-half weeks in north London.
Those who surpass the second round and decide to return home during the Christmas break will be retested, and their opponents will receive a bye should they test positive.
2021 WORLD DARTS CHAMPIONSHIP
Alexandra Palace, London
December 15-January 3
(Featured Image: Lawrence Lustig/PDC)