Darts: Gary Anderson forced to withdraw from 'Home Tour' due to bad Wi-Fi

Scottish darts star Gary Anderson's dodgy internet connection has put paid to his chances of competing in the Professional Darts Corporation's (PDC) inaugural 'Home Tour'. 

The competition was set up to entertain darts fans stuck at home due to the COVID-19 pandemic and was launched on Saturday (NZ time), featuring 128 top players squaring off against each other from their homes using video calls.

In the absence of most other live sport, the concept has captured the public imagination.

Two-times PDC world champion Anderson will not be at the oche, however.

"I was up for it but when we did tests of my WiFi, it's just not reliable enough," the 'Flying Scotsman' told The Sun.

"It doesn't surprise me. I struggle to pay bills online in my house, it's really frustrating."

The 49-year-old was injured for part of the 2019 season and was looking forward to making a strong return this year before the coronavirus brought the global sporting calendar to a standstill.

"It's unbelievable," he added.

"Two years on the trot I've missed the opening few months."

Former World Grand Prix champion Daryl Gurney also pulled out of the event for the same issue.

He tweeted: "Sorry to everyone but I won't be participating in the fantastic PDC Innovation Darts at Home.

"My internet WiFi is not up to scratch and the set-up I use for practice wouldn't be sufficient. Good luck to everyone."

World No.1 Michael van Gerwen will be another big absentee, the Dutchman telling RTL7 television that his home life made it impossible.

"It has to be quiet but with a newborn baby, a child of two and a half years and three dogs, it really won't work," he explained.

On the inaugural night of the newly devised tournament, world champion Peter 'Snakebite' Wright missed out on winning the opening group of the PDC Home Tour as Wales' Jamie Lewis claimed top spot to seal a spot in the last 32.

Lewis claimed victories over Wright, Peter Jacques and Niels Zonneveld to advance. 

PDC boss Matt Porter said they are looking at ways to improve the viewer experience.

"We will work on technical improvements daily but please remember there are 90+ players in the event from multiple countries and normal supply chains aren't all working so we can't just 'send them all a camera' and we are reliant on local internet," he tweeted. 

Gerwyn Price, Rowby-John Rodriguez, Ted Evetts and Luke Woodhouse are in action on Sunday.