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June 2009:

Has Pro Life got no news on the PDC then? I have to ask because his column in last month’s issue was filled with his usual whinging about the BDO, EDO and the usual ‘suspects’!

I wouldn’t normally bother, but the question is why does it trouble him so much?

And what makes me laugh is that he gets it all wrong anyway! Take the World Masters and him saying that he’d ‘heard’ that there are going to be 16 Seeded players at Bridlington this September – well he heard wrong! There will be 8 seeded players in the last 16 of the BBC televised Mens Singles.

Personally I don’t believe there should be any seeds in the World Masters they should only be seeded on their board!

The BBC schedule the World Masters in consultation with the BDO and it goes out on a weekend that gives the best possible live coverage.

As far as England Darts Organisation is concerned, there is no ‘partnership’ with the BDO. The EDO is independent although they should really work together but the BDO don’t want anything to do with them and its nothing to do with Pro Life anyway!

However, I do actually agree that no matter what some might think of Colin Saunders, at least he’s always had a voice and a passion for darts, and tried to make things happen within the EDO but they got rid of him and sent him to Coventry – not a bad place for him to go mind you although he told me he doesn’t like it much! Only joking Col when one door closes another one will open mate!..

On a final note, was it just a coincidence that Fernando Lopez of Portugal chose to show off his impressive grasp of English and his knowledge of the BDO in the Letters section of the same issue, and the only other big letter was once again having a go at The Legends?

I reckon there must be a bit of telepathy going on…..or perhaps it’s a bit of extra mischief making from you know who?

Isn’t it nice to get old and still be popular and working! Three cheers for the Legends Darts Club (LDC).


I am delighted to say that the popularity of The Legends is continuing at such a pace that there are already loads of dates in the diary for next year and me, Eric and Lobo will be entertaining three days every week at Butlin’s Minehead, Bognor Regis and Skegness throughout this summer.

That’s a total of 23 dates at Butlin’s in July and August - which should qualify each of us to call ourselves Redcoats!


Also in July (on the 18th to be precise) we will be at one of the most famous seaside showbiz venues (not easy to say after a couple of pigs ears!) in England – the North Pier in Blackpool (see poster) which is about two miles long! We’ll have to get our roller-skates out!!

And, while on the subject of showbiz venues, me and Eric and Phil had a great night at the Palace Hotel in Manchester, when we were VIP guests at a Variety Club of Great Britain tribute to the legend that is Engelbert Humperdinck.

The Variety Club made an award to him to mark not only his long and successful career as a singer, but also his considerable charitable work. He was also chuffed that he has been given the Freedom of the City of Leicester (his home town) and can now drive his sheep (if he had some) down the main road!

It was a really great and enjoyable night in Manchester with lots of show business stars. Cannon & Ball got on my nerves a bit (no, a lot!) by shouting ‘180’ or ‘Rock on, darts’ every time they saw me, but I was knocked out with the terrific singing talent of Joe Longthorne.

What an artist! And what a shame that TV cameras were not there, because this would have made a fantastic variety show……’An Audience with Engelbert, Joe, Eric, Phil & Bobby’.

Anyway, we were asked to speak, but I did most of the talking and before we got up I told Eric about Engelbert’s visit to George Hall and me calling him by the wrong name.

‘You can’t mention any of that’ Eric said before we got up, but I couldn’t resist!

To explain, Engelbert came to George Hall to play a game of darts for the BBC’s ‘A Leg With Bobby’ (this was seen during the World Pro coverage). He was due to stay for an hour, but 8 hours later, after drinking all my brandy, he was still there!

I didn’t have a problem with that because he’s a genuinely nice bloke, but I misheard him when he told me his nickname. I had been calling him Engelbert and he said: ‘Please call me by my nickname ‘Enge’ – that’s what all my mates know me by’.

Well, I was flattered that he considered me to be his mate, but I misheard him and started calling him by a name that sounded similar (rhyming more with hinge than Enge!) but had a rude meaning (I will have to leave it to your imagination!).

Anyway, when Eric told me not to mention the story I just couldn’t resist!
He kicked the back of my ankle (just like old times on the oche!) and gave me loads of funny looks.

I swear he blushed, but everyone else (including Enge) laughed their heads off so I kept on going. I also told the audience that after losing to me in that ‘Leg With Bobby’ he challenged my boy Richard for a fiver and lost.

Then to completely ruin his day, Robert came in and asked if he was the bloke from our local garden centre before giving him another thrashing on the dartboard!

Like the gentleman he is, he took it all in good fun and gave me an IOU for Richard’s fiver, and he even managed a smile when I told everyone that his darts playing wasn’t too bad, but his singing could do with improving! Blimey I am still covered in bruises from Eric’s ankle tapping!!



Other than that, one of the highlights of the night was when we all joined in with Engelbert as he sang his biggest ever hit ‘Please Release Me’ - but another one quickly followed when Phil Taylor made a winning bid of £5,000 for a special Variety Club watch.

It was a nice gesture by Phil, because the money was all for charity, but by one of those strange coincidences, I just happened to be on the same table as the bloke who actually made the watches for the Variety Club.

We got on very well and I was amazed and flattered when he not only showed me one of his watches, but gave it to me!

But what made me smile was Eric saying that it felt like going to Morrison’s: Buy One, Get One Free!


Just a couple of days after being with Enge in Manchester he appeared on Channel 4’s ‘Paul O’Grady Show’ and not only mentioned me, Eric and Phil, but also said some lovely things about darts.

It was great publicity for our sport, because Paul O’Grady has done loads of things on darts in his shows and I have made a couple of appearances in recent years. Enge also mentioned that he has his own pub in the garden of his Leicester house and in pride of place is his own personal dartboard.

Anyway, in the middle of being interviewed by Paul, Enge mentioned his Variety Club honour and the fact that he’d met three real ‘stars’ – Phil Taylor, Eric Bristow and yours-truly, who he described as a ‘colourful character’.

He also said that he’d had a darts lesson from Phil and another one from me, but nothing from Eric (that’s why they call him ‘Crafty’).

The interview ended with Paul O’Grady saying to Enge: ‘Don’t you think that darts players are lovely people?’ And the legendary singer, who surely modelled his sideburns on Olly Croft, not only agreed with him but also said loads more smashing things about darts.


We had 12 really top businessmen come to The Legends recently. We are talking shipping magnates and captains of industry, and they had the time of their lives.

They organised a slap-up meal for us afterwards in a swanky Indian restaurant, and what they liked most of all by what they saw, was affordable entertainment with huge appeal.

At this rate we’ll be appearing on luxury cruise liners! Watch this space!!


Talking of cruising, when I went to Cardiff the sat-nav was no use at all, because there are so many roadworks in the City Centre that it was impossible to get to the theatre.

It’s where the BBC make ‘Dr.Who’ and I could have been on another planet in the Tardis as I went round and round and got absolutely nowhere! Trouble is, far from being a Time Lord like Dr.Who, I was actually running out of time as I tried to get round what seemed like hundreds of barriers, road closures, ‘temporary’ traffic lights and workmen digging holes everywhere!

In desperation when I spotted a police station I pulled over and went if for some help and directions.

No, they didn’t arrest me! Quite the opposite. The officer on the front desk was so helpful that he came back to the car with me and not only showed me the way, but actually got out and moved barriers so that I could get through.

It was more than a police escort because I had my own personal policeman on board……what you could call a Bobby for Bobby!

Anyway, thanks to him I made it to the theatre on time. For obvious reasons I can’t name him (he might get into trouble) but he restored my faith in the good old British police force.


Allo,. Allo! That’s about it for another month. Don’t forget to come along to a night with The Legends and have a bit of fun!

Hasta la Vista.




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