Phil Taylor and Mikuru Suzuki will collide in a soft-tip charity showdown on the Target Nexus Dartboard on Thursday evening, despite the fact they’ll be 6,000 miles apart.
Taylor locked horns with his old rival Raymond van Barneveld in a soft-tip tussle last month, with the Dutchman running out a 7-6 winner in an epic. More importantly however, they raised £15,000 for the NHS courtesy of bookmakers Paddy Power, who donated £1,000 for every 180 hit.
Once again Paddy Power have pledged to donate £1,000 for every maximum posted, whilst they will also donate £200 for every first-dart finish to the NHS charity Heroes and Peace Winds, in a clash that will be broadcast on Sky Sports and TalkSPORT from 7pm on Thursday.
Taylor has featured in a number of events over recent weeks, having made two cameo appearances in Modus’ online live-streamed league. ‘The Power’ edged out Fallon Sherrock 4-3 last week and now he’ll take on another star of the women’s game in the shape of Suzuki.
‘The Miracle’ has enjoyed a stunning rise to prominence over the last two years, winning back-to-back women’s World Championship titles and competing against the PDC’s elite at the Grand Slam of Darts and the recent PDC World Championship, where she was edged out by James Richardson.
Suzuki possesses plenty of soft-tip experience – largely due to the sport’s growing popularity in Asia – and speaking to The Sun, she admitted she was relishing the prospect of taking on the 16-time world champion.
“Phil is super famous here,” said Suzuki. “In Japan he’s known literally as the God of Darts. I don’t think there is someone in Japan who plays darts and doesn’t know Phil Taylor. Everybody will be super-happy and impressed that I’m playing a charity game against him.
“To beat him would be totally unbelievable. He’s amazing. I can barely describe him with words, but in soft tip darts, I have a lot of experience of playing and then beating men on the Asian Tour.”
Taylor has also competed on the soft-tip circuit since retiring from competitive darts in January 2018 and he was due to feature in another major event in Japan back in March, until the tournament was postponed due to the coronavirus pandemic.
The pair – both of whom represent Target Darts – will be playing from their respective living rooms, with Taylor back home in Stoke-on-Trent, whilst Suzuki will be playing eight hours ahead on the island of Shikoku in lockdown with her family.
As well as being available to watch on Sky Sports, the match can also be viewed via Target Darts’ and Paddy Power’s social media channels.
Image: Paddy Power