Darts referee George Noble seemingly took a brief nap on stage at the Czech Open on Friday.

The veteran official, who has been involved in the sport since the early-1990s, appeared to momentarily lose sight of where he was by taking a nap while the PDC event took place. Noble, who is known for his no-nonsense approach, looked as if he had his eyes closed as he somehow maintained his balance and gently swayed.

It took several moments before the “sleepy” referee opened his eyes, before folding his arms. And fans were quick to comment on the hilarious incident involving one of the best referees in the sport.

One fan commented: “He was tired. Poor guy.” while another wrote: “Haha, he’s a good guy.”

Another fan on YouTube pointed out that Noble may have in fact been sorting out some logistical problems but was caught at an unfortunate angle by cameras.

They wrote: “I think he's just adjusting the mic or something or the computer idk.”

The PDC European Tour event in Prague began on Friday as 48 players set their sights on the £140,000 tournament prize. Two-time World Champion Adrian Lewis was in action on the opening day as he overcame reigning World Youth Champion Ted Evetts 6-3 with a clinical display.

Lewis will take on world no.2 Gerwyn Price in Saturday’s second round in his pursuit of a first European Tour title since 2012.

Meanwhile, the opening day also saw three of six Czech players progress to round two. Adam Gawlas finished six doubles from 11 attempts as he defeated Dennie Olde Kalter, while debutant Vitezslav Sedlak secured a dream second round tie against Michael van Gerwen after a 6-4 comeback win against Jon Worsley.

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