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Lisa Ashton calls for new PDC women’s tour after claiming Tour Card at Q School
Lisa Ashton has booked her place on the PDC main tour, but she is still keen to see a separate ladies’ tour set up by the premier organisation in darts.
The four-time BDO women’s world champion became the first woman ever to win a PDC Tour Card through Q School and will take on the big names over the next two years.
She will be the only woman on tour, battling it out with men on the Pro Tour, European Tour and, she will be hoping, in the major tournaments as well, if she can qualify.
The Lancashire Rose admits that taking on the men brings the best out of female players, encouraging them to raise their game, which is exactly what she plans to do.
‘I know I have to do the hard work now and push my level even higher against these men and see how far I can go,’ the 49-year-old told the Telegraph.
‘No disrespect to any of the ladies, but we do play better against the men. I think its because we know we have to because they are stronger – they are hitting higher scores, so its pushing us.
‘Every step is a new challenge. Thats what I like about it. Im not there just to make up the numbers. Let them worry about me and not me worry about them.’
It has been an historic couple of months for women’s darts after Fallon Sherrock became the first woman to win a match at the PDC World Championship, beating Ted Evetts and then Mensur Suljovic.
With the vast media attention that Sherrock received and Ashton backing that up with another mammoth achievement, the female players are showing they can compete with the men, but Lisa would still like to see a woman-only tour on the PDC.
The BDO have their own female tour, but with significant financial and organisational issues, and now Ashton has jumped ship, she has called on PDC chairman Barry Hearn to create new tournaments.
‘The ladies are coming through, so hopefully with Fallon and me and others having a go, hopefully Barry Hearn might do a little ladies tour,’ continued the six-time World Championship finalist.
‘The opportunity is there. Fallon has shown she can play and shes opened doors to ladies darts to show that we are ready to compete.’
Ashton begins her PDC journey on 8 February in the glamorous setting of Barnsley Metrodome at the first Players Championship event of the season.