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Brandon darts sensation Lennon ‘The Force’ Wharf, who trains in Stowmarket, signs to Target Darts’ Elite 1 programme





A 10-year-old darts sensation from Suffolk who has already beat world champions has signed to a prestigious programme.

Lennon ‘The Force’ Wharf, of Brandon, has joined the Elite 1 programme at Target Darts following a remarkable journey that began when he hit his first 180 at the age of three.

The youngster embarks on his new chapter with the aim of becoming a world champion and his parents have said they could not be prouder of him.

Lennon 'The Force' Wharf is the youngest player to ever sign to the Elite 1 programme at Target Darts. Pictures: Gary Wharf
Lennon 'The Force' Wharf is the youngest player to ever sign to the Elite 1 programme at Target Darts. Pictures: Gary Wharf

Lennon’s dad Gary Wharf, 40, said: “He’s just obsessed with the sport. We can put an XBOX or a Nintendo Switch in front of him and he won’t use it, he just has no interest in it, but put him in front of a darts board and it's a different story.

“He’s put seven years of hard graft into this and me and my wife Emma could not be prouder and we are just so excited for him.

“When he hit his first 180 when he was three, I just couldn’t believe it. He’s now done something like 450 of them, which is crazy.”

Lennon with his coach Stuart Huggins and his dad Gary at Circus Tavern Entertainment Complex
Lennon with his coach Stuart Huggins and his dad Gary at Circus Tavern Entertainment Complex

Lennon, who is the youngest player to ever sign for Target, got into playing the sport after his dad used to practice at home while he was playing at pub level.

Fast forward seven years later, the young talent has beaten three-time former world champion Glen Durrent, won more than 10 youth tournaments and was selected to play for Suffolk under 18s at the age of 10.

“What he's achieved already at his age is incredible and he wants to go on and be world champion”, Gary said.

Lennon has been compared to 17-year-old Luke Littler who burst on to the scene with a brilliant debut at the PDC World Darts Championship
Lennon has been compared to 17-year-old Luke Littler who burst on to the scene with a brilliant debut at the PDC World Darts Championship

“There’s a long way to go but he's on the right track and doing really well.

“He's not scared of playing the adults and he’s even played some world champions before on stage and beat them.”

Lennon practises four or five hours a day at home and started training at Stowmarket Youth Darts Coach Development School (SYDDS) last year.

Lennon's eye-catching mohican is modelled on former world champion Peter 'Snakebite' Wright
Lennon's eye-catching mohican is modelled on former world champion Peter 'Snakebite' Wright

His coach and also head coach at the school, Stuart Higgins, has praised Lennon’s skill as well as his personality.

He said: “Lennon is very well liked by everyone and extremely well mannered to his teammates and his peers and he is very mature for his age.

“He has gained confidence through playing darts at our youth school along with forming friendships and camaraderie as well as developing his ability in darts.

Keith Deller of Ipswich, who won the 1983 BDO World Darts Championship, with Lennon
Keith Deller of Ipswich, who won the 1983 BDO World Darts Championship, with Lennon

“His focus and passion for the game are incredible at just 10 years old and his determination to succeed mixed with the enjoyment he gets really shows on the dart board with his ability to play at such a good standard.

“I feel extremely proud of Lennon for his achievements so far and being recognised as such a talent. Along with all the team at SYDDS we look forward to supporting him on his darting journey.”

Lorraine Winstanley, head of youth development at Target Darts, said on its website: “Lennon is a remarkable young talent with a bright future ahead of him.

Lennon practices four to five hours a day at his home in Brandon
Lennon practices four to five hours a day at his home in Brandon

“His dedication to the sport at such a young age is truly inspiring, and we are thrilled to welcome him to the Target Darts family.”