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February 2012

What a year 2012 has been already and we’re only in February!

My boy Richie has won both the Colchester Open and Southend Open in the last couple of months and without blowing any trumpets or giving him a big head I reckon he’s going to have a good darting year.  He’s going to play on the BDO tour in 2012 and, who knows, he might make it to Lakeside 2013.  That would be good as long as I don’t have to interview him!

He’s certainly following in his old man’s footsteps – especially as I am still waiting for him to buy me a drink!

It was also nice that Colin Lloyd mentioned Richie and me after his win against newcomer Scott Rand in the PDC Championship.  He was obviously a little peeved that he was being written off by the studio ‘experts’ he called Freeman, Hardy & Willis, and when he was asked what had made the difference to his performance – especially his fantastic 167 checkout when Scott Rand was waiting to take out double 4 - he said ‘Bobby George’.

Well, I nearly feel off the sofa and spilt my drink!

You see, Colin has been coming to George Hall to practice with Richie and me (well Richie really)  and we have all become good friends (which he also mentioned).  Judging from Colin’s early performances and his bubbly personality, it’s an arrangement that has suited both him and Richie.

But that wasn’t the end of it, because Wayne Mardle also mentioned Colin’s visits to George Hall for practice and described Richie as a great player.  

But they weren’t finished there, because Big E joined the Richie George Appreciation Society!  

It made me feel proper proud of my boy!

Mind you, I particularly liked it when Colin said that I had taught him that every time you get up and play it’s just a game of darts so enjoy it!

Just a shame it didn’t work out for Colin this year – he’s a really nice bloke - but he proved to everyone that he still has the game to beat anyone out there.

Congratulations to Adrian Lewis on successfully defending his PDC World title.  Jackpot played very well and so did Andy The Hammer Hamilton - not just in the final but during the week.

Well done to both of them!

Unfortunately, it is that time of the year when the Darts World print deadlines make if difficult (make that impossible) to write about the Lakeside World Pro in any depth.

With well over 60 hours of TV on BBC and ESPN  this year I have certainly been a very busy boy!

Having said that, we are looking forward to a nice break  this month, because me and Marie are off to Veldhoven in The Netherlands for the final day of the 2012 Dutch Open on February 5th .

I have been invited as a special ‘VIP’ guest, and hopefully Richie will be taking his good form to the biggest tournament in European darts when he competes in both the Dutch Open Singles and Pairs.

Take a butcher’s at the new website of the Dutch Darts Association and you can read all about it!

I think I blushed (but only a bit) when I read that they are describing me as a ‘world famous darts legend’.  That’s not what Marie calls me, but I was more than a little flattered to read those words.

Anyway, if you want to catch a glimpse of ‘the legend’ and watch the final day of this huge tournament on February 5th all you have to do it go on the website and click on the link for live streaming.

I did my first TV appearance of the year (other than Lakeside) in the Antiques Road Trip.

No, they didn’t value me as an antique!  I am more ‘ansome than antique!!

It was to take part in a programme on Patrick Dee, who lives in Ipswich  and has the most amazing collection on darts memorabilia I have ever seen.  I’ve got quite a bit, but Patrick’s place is a museum to darts.

He keeps it all in a building (too posh to call a shed) at the bottom of his garden and it’s like walking into an Aladdin’s Cave for darts.

He’s got every dart and dartboard ever made; the ceiling is covered in flights of all shapes and designs.  There’s stuff going back to the 1930s and photo’s and posters from all the major events, including the old News Of The World and of course the World Pro.

When the telly decided to film Patrick and his collection, they discovered that he had one of my old cloaks and a candelabra that I donated to him some time ago.

So they asked me to make a guest appearance on the show and I presented him with a signed book (see photo).

It was a great pleasure to meet Patrick and I can honestly say that I enjoyed looking at his marvellous collection.

He should be very proud of it.





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