DARTS fan Ray Watson was reunited with legend of the game John Lowe more than 30 years after beating the former world champion.
Hartlepool man Ray reminded the three-times world champion of the time he beat Lowe at the oche in a Hartlepool social club when they met up again at a recent charity darts night.
Lowe was delighted to see Ray again, and said he remembered playing at Hartlepool’s former Boilermakers Club where he suffered the defeat.
Lowe had dropped into the club to get in some practice before a local tournament.
Ray, 73, who played in the Boilermaker’s Tuesday night darts league, said: “I was told John would be in the club and to get down there early if I wanted to play him.
“I went down and got a game with John. He missed his double to finish and I needed 76 which I hit with two twenties and a double 18.
“He said ‘is that in?’ and I said yes.”
Ray, a retired plasterer’s labourer, cannot remember the exact date of his victory but thinks it was the late 70s or early 80s after Lowe had become world champion.
He went to watch him play at a charity night at The Swan Hotel in Billingham last month when Lowe and fellow former champion Eric Bristow took on locals.
Ray, who lives in Rift House, Hartlepool, said: “I had a word with him on the night and said ‘you won’t remember me’ but he said he remembered playing in the Boilermakers and we had a laugh about it.”
Ray, married to Kathy, also 73, won a raffle prize to take on Lowe again but declined a rematch.
He added: “I jokingly said I was not going to play him again because I wanted to keep it one nil to me.
“I didn’t want him to get revenge!”
The dad-of-four and granddad of seven does not play darts as often as he used to, but is a member of the town’s Monday night club league.
The charity night was organised by Ian Richardson to raise vital funds for the Jo and Mya Memorial Fund, which supports bereaved families affected by death and terminal illness.
Ian set the charity up in memory of his wife and daughter after they were tragically killed in a car crash in Newcastle in August 2010.