Belfast Telegraph

Sunday 21 September 2014

Billy on the Box: There’s just not enough name calling at the darts

I am a darter of a certain vintage, brought up in an era when lumbering giants ruled the earth and the nickname was the preserve of only the special few.

This was a time when the doors opened and the smoke dissipated a rotund man would have emerged and said ‘tonight Matthew, I’m Big such and such’ and no-one’s eyelids would have batted an inch.

It’s all change now, that pesky Barry Hearn up to no good again, and as the World Championships swung into action this week, the decision to open the event up to chuckers from across the globe has thrown up a problem.

With your travel visa, black Farahs and a garish top does not come a snazzy new moniker, thus why visitors from increasingly far-flung shores need to be taken to one side and given a proper nickname.

Christian Perez |(not pictured) from the Philippines arrived to take on Austria’s Dietmar Burger, only to reveal his nickname was ‘Ian’. Look, this is a serious business, if you’re not even going to try

Then again our Austrian chum didn’t come on as Dietmar ‘quarter pound’ Burger (with cheese, no pickle) and even near neighbour Kevin Munch wasn’t playing the game properly either.

Surely if your surname is Munch, then his new name should be ‘Monster’, not ‘Dragon’ as he turned up with. Those zany Germans.

But the English are culpable too, as James Richardson stole the headlines by beating Raymond van Barneveld (he was a Transit owner, I believe) but hadn’t room on his shirt for ‘and on this week’s Gazzetta Football Italia we catch up with Gazza in Rome.’

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