Darts Loses a Legend – Eric Bristow 1957-2018

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RIP ‘Crafty Cockney’ 1957-2018

Darts Legend Eric Bristow MBE has died at age 60.   Five time World Champion between 1980 and 1986, Eric also won five World Masters titles and was a founder player of the PDC when it was formed in 1993.

PDC chairman Barry Hearn said he would “always be a legend in the world of darts and British sport.  It’s just unbelievable. He was working as normal in hospitality, started feeling ill and collapsed and died. Our thoughts go out to his wife and family because this has come as a massive shock to the whole sport of darts.”

Matthew Porter, the PDC’s chief executive, had been with Bristow before he collapsed: “Awful evening here in Liverpool. Was with Eric earlier and he was in great spirits. A massive character. There are tears for a legend backstage here tonight.”

Born in Hackney, Bristow shot to fame as a 23-year-old when he beat Bobby George in the final of the 1980 British Darts Organisation world championships, beating John Lowe the following year to retain his title.

His success coincided with increased television coverage of the sport and his lightning quick action and supreme ability ensured he became a household name.

Five time World Champion between 1980 and 1986, Eric also won five World Masters titles and was a founder player of the PDC when it was formed in 1993.

Bristow also played a key role in mentoring 16-time world champion Phil Taylor and moved into broadcasting with Sky Sports after retiring from the sport in 2000.

Eric was never afraid of controversy, but he spoke as he found and was honest and straightforward, which is what people admired about him,” said Hearn. “The PDC, and the sport of darts, will miss him.”

Eric always a character will be missed by many a darting fan.