You Can’t Beat a Bit of Bully!

It’s one of the cornerstones of darts lingo and a healthy Derby crowd found out first hand that it is absolutely spot on. You really can’t beat a bit of Bully.

There’s no Jim Bowen or Tony Green, and (some might say thankfully) there’s no sign of Dave Spikey. What we do get is a trip down memory lane with all the favourites of the popular Sunday evening show, peddled along by comedian and compere extraordinaire Neil Wheatley.

The category round (Faces, Places, Sport, Showbiz, Affairs, History, Books, Words, Britain, Spelling), pounds for points, Bully’s prize board and star prize gamble are all in attendance; the three darts legends throw for the bronze bully; the losers get a Bullseye darts and a bendy bully in a tankard; there’s even a speedboat, albeit a 17 inch long model.

A VIP reception for those who pushed the boat out provided an opportunity to meet the three darts legends and have merchandise signed in time for a good crack at Ebay in the run up to Christmas. A glass of champers and mingling with darting royalty was a nice Sunday treat for the privileged few before the main action on the stage.

After a Wheatley warm up to oil the tonsils and get the crowd going the iconic music got us underway as a mini bendy bully was launched into the crowd to select the three contestants who would have the chance to win £500 in cash. Woooo!

The three legends of darts were introduced who were to partner Ian, Scott and Sammy to help try to win them the cash…

1988 World Champion Bob Anderson who recalled that his favourite Bully moment was going for double top when Linda Lusardi was on the show!

John Lowe, a world champion in three separate decades – the 1920’s, 1930’s and 1940’s.

Five time world champion, Eric Bristow who revealed that he threatened to deck Rod Hull if “that bird comes anywhere near me”. A tactic Michael Parkinson should perhaps have adopted.

By the completion of the category board (where Affairs really meant ‘affairs’ with a question about Ashley Cole’s extra-marital activities, and a life sized Bully came on with his dictionary to check the spelling) and pounds for points (where the contestants struggled to name the current Labour leader!) we were left with one team standing. We had to say goodbye to Ian and Tammy as Scott and Old Stoneface progressed to Bully’s Prize Board.

Before the finale the three legends went head to head for the Bronze Bully (reputed to be worth £30k would you believe?) and it was Bob Anderson who came out on top tonight to take the lead in the mini individual battle.

The challenges were not over as the three legends teamed up to take on a three man team of Derbyshire county players. Two tight games saw the teams tied at one all, Lowe losing miserably and Bristow pulling it out of the fire to level. It was left to the ultra competitive Bob Anderson to turn on the after burners and see the legends home 2-1.

The denouement was upon us and a truly awe inspiring array of prizes were on offer on Bully’s Prize Board. Scott and John were in the black more than the red but avoided two-in-a-bed and came away with a set of pasta bowls (woo!), an electric blanket (wooo!), a bullseye alarm clock (woooo!) and a set of pink luggage (wooooo!). They missed the bull, and hence the speedboat, but this was an impressive haul nonetheless.

Scott was given the time it took the board to revolve to decide whether to gamble for the £500 in cash and I suspect he had decided before the question had been asked. Three darts with the left and three with the right did not score more than 101 and so Scott left with his BFH. And we all know what that is, don’t we?

At the time of writing there are still dates left on the tour, further information can be found here.

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