Adrian shows why he's tops

A JACKPOT darts champion took on crowds of hopefuls during an exhibition match.

New PDC World Championship Adrian "Jackpot" Lewis showed off his top flight skills in front of hundreds of enthusiasts.

Adrian is still getting to grips with being called the world champion after his stunning performances saw him lift the prestigious title at Alexandra Palace earlier this month.

And the hundreds of darts enthusiasts who went to watch Jackpot in action, at the Swan pub in Billingham last night, saw first-hand why the best players on the planet were humbled by the man from Stoke-on-Trent.

He spent an hour signing autographs and posing for photographs, three hours stood at the oche giving local pubs and club players their chance for a moment of fame, and another half an hour chatting to the knowledgeable crowd.

Adrian said exhibitions like the one last night are part and parcel of the usual schedule for a professional darts player.

After taking to the stage to a standing ovation, it was not long before the 180s were flying and the crowd were roaring.

The 25-year old is classed as a youngster in the world of darts, but he soon became the old head when his first challenger of the night took his place on the oche five-year-old Nathaniel Williams, from Stockton.

Sam Henderson celebrated his 13th birthday in style as he got the chance to take on the world champion as well, and Jonathan Hoyle, Barry

Hunter, Michael McKenna, Carl Prince and Jimmy Dunlop were ecstatic after beating the PDC ace.

Lewis said: "I really enjoy coming out and doing exhibitions like this.

"I have never been to Billingham or Hartlepool before to play but I really enjoyed the experience."

It is not long before another class-act on the world scene makes a visit as Simon The Wizard Whitlock is playing at the Billingham Social Club and Insitute on Friday, March 18.

Tickets, priced at 10 or 15 for VIP can be bought by calling The Darts Angel, who also organised last night's event, on 07955 547721.