Jacqui Oatley forced to leave ITV’s darts coverage of Masters mid-broadcast

Jacqui Oatley was forced to pull out of ITV's coverage for the Masters mid-broadcast on Sunday after coming down sick.

The 48-year-old has been the leading face for the action this week and started as presenter of the final show of the tournament in Milton Keynes, which was airing live footage from the evening session of the semi-finals and final. However, poor Oatley had to reluctantly accept defeat after the second semi-final as she was replaced by Ned Boulting.

He came on and said: "Jacqui has been battling illness over the weekend and has finally succumbed, hence why I'm here."

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Oatley had been in the hot-seat as Chris Dobey sealed his path to a first televised final of his career, beating world No.1 Michael Smith 11-7. Rob Cross then ensured he would be battling it out with Dobey for the Masters crown as he saw off Peter Wright in a close-run 11-10 contest.

Boulting then had to take over the mic for the final as Dobey and Cross went head-to-head for the £65,000 prize fund.

Fans were quick to send their well wishes to Oatley following the news. One wrote on Twitter: "Sorry to hear that you're unwell! Get better soon." Another had just tuned in to see Boulting on screen, and tagged Oatley in a message which read: "Hope you're well just seen that you're not on the darts."

Another caring fan did their best to put Oatley's mind at ease with some reassurance. "Get well soon Jacqui," they wrote. "Ned Boulting will brilliantly look after everything so your health comes first. See you in Minehead for Cazoo UK Open Darts."

Oatley has been highly praised for her coverage across the tournament, with one fan writing after Saturday's show: "Superb coverage by you and the team as always."


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