Michael van Gerwen may be the current star of world darts, but he could soon have some competition on his hands; in the shape of four-year-old darting prodigy Mason Foulkes. Mason, from Bridgehall, Stockport, has a board and oche in his bedroom after becoming obsessed with the sport when he saw it on TV for the first time two years ago.
Stockport have produced a number of top-class darters over the years, including BDO veterans Tony O’Shea and Darryl Fitton, as well as former PDC World-Youth finalist Nathan Aspinall. Mason could well be the next emerging star from their decorated darting conveyor belt.
At just three feet tall, Mason requires his target slightly lower than a regular one, but he is able to hit any target given to him. His dad Lee is a darts player and will travel to Malta next month to compete in an exhibition event. He claimed that Mason has a particular affinity for the bullseye, which he hits with unrelenting precision.
Lee also revealed that Mason has been tipped for future glory by an established PDC professional. “Hopefully we have a future Lakeside champion on our hands. The way he plays baffles me – he is amazing. He has got the stance and the throw. Professional player Robbie Green got in contact to say he’s got everything – just keep him on it.”
“He loves sports including football and supports Manchester United, but obviously darts is his favourite. He got new flights for Christmas and he knows who all the players are. Other things he’ll put down after five minutes, but with darts he’ll just play it for hours and hours,” he added.
The four-year-old darting enthusiast was given a board by Paul Mack, the head of Stockport’s Darts Academy, and he even has a board in his garden which enables him to play in the open air. His favourite player is newly crowned world champion Michael van Gerwen, and Mason currently plays with Van Gerwen’s flights.
Lee admits that he is astonished by his son’s ability. “Mason has watched me and wanted a go. We got him some rubber tipped darts but he uses the real thing now. At the moment he loves the bullseye.
“He can also hit any number you give him. I’m not a bad player but in a couple of years he’ll be better than me. It’s fascinating watching him, I could do it all day, I’ve never seen anything like it.”
Photo Credit: Manchester Evening News