I'm former darts world champion… now I earn £9-an-hour stacking shelves at Co-op | The Sun

I'm former darts world champion… now I earn £9-an-hour stacking shelves at Co-op | The Sun

February 28, 2023

A FORMER world darts champion has traded in his sporting career to stack shelves at his local Co-op.

After a neck injury forced him to quit the sport, the champ took up a £9-per-hour job in Sheffield.

Retired "John Boy" Walton, 58, was previously known for winning the 2001 BDO World Darts Championship.

He made the unlikely career move in 2018, saying: “It’s a complete 180, but I love it.”

BBC host Dan Walker revealed the champ’s new life on Twitter as he recognised him while shopping at the store.

Walton told the Sunday Mirror: “We looked at each other, we both recognised each other – it was quite surreal.

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“I couldn’t remember his name at the time but he knew mine.

“He asked me where the ice cream cones were but we had sold out.”

The dad-of-five, known for using Rednex hit Cotton Eye Joe as his entrance music, won the 2001 title at the Lakeside Country Club in Surrey.

He took home the £46,000 prize despite the odds – stacked against him as a 50-1 outsider.

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He beat former world darts champion Ted Hankey.

But his darts career came to an abrupt end.

He said: “I couldn’t play in tournaments because I wasn’t cutting it. I’ve been at the Co-op for two years now.

"I work part-time, one or two days a week. It’s not a financial thing, it’s just… to keep me occupied.

“I’ve struck up a load of friendships, and it’s nice to give something back to the community.”

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