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Andy The Viking Darts Player

Andy The Viking Darts Player
Andy The Viking Darts Player

Andy The Viking Darts Player: Andrew Fordham (February 2, 1962 – July 15, 2021) was an English professional darts player who was better known by his stage name “The Viking.” He took home the BDO World Darts Championship in 2004 and the Winmau World Masters in 1999. “the Viking” Fordham, who died at the age of 59, was one of the world’s most famous darts players, immediately identifiable by his mane of long hair, thick black beard, and 190kg (30 stone) frame. In reality, the 2004 world champion was never the fearsome figure that his outward look implied.

The promoter Barry Hearn described him as “a gentleman of whom I have never heard a bad word” and the former world champion John Lowe said he was “a true friend of everyone.” Fellow players and friends spoke of his unwaveringly gentle and generous nature, with the promoter describing him as “a gentleman of whom I have never heard a bad word.” Although his top-level playing days were gone, he was always well-received at darts tournaments and was widely recognized as a prominent figure in the world of darts after that.

In 1995, he advanced to the semi-finals of the British Darts Organization’s global tournament, where he was defeated by eventual winner Richie Burnett. He repeated the feat the following year, losing to Steve Beaton, who went on to win the championship. Fordham was eliminated in the semi-finals twice more, first in 1999 to Ronnie Baxter and again two years later to Ted Hankey.

Andy The Viking Darts Player
Andy The Viking Darts Player

He had already won various events across Europe, including the 1999 BDO world masters, and had earned the nickname “the Viking” when his fellow player Bobby George coined the term while commentating on a television broadcast. Having established himself as a firm fan favorite, he finally put an end to his nearly-man reputation at the 2004 BDO world championship, when he came from behind to defeat defending champion Raymond van Barneveld in an epic semi-final match, before winning the title to rapturous acclaim by defeating Mervyn King in the final.

Andy Fordham makes a return appearance in the 2015 Grand Slam of Tennis in Las Vegas.
Fordham, on the other hand, was starting to feel the effects of a very unhealthy lifestyle. In his current position as manager of the Rose bar in Dartford, Kent, he has confessed to binge drinking excessively in order to keep his anxieties under control, downing copious quantities of alcohol before matches, and his weight has risen to more than 30 stone in the process.

In retrospect, he admits that he was an alcoholic, but that he couldn’t stop himself from doing so. The feeling of being in command didn’t last long. A typical day might have up to 25 bottles of beer and a half-bottle of spirits in my possession. Also, with takeout and kebabs on the menu, I’d be eating poorly and doing no exercise.”

Andy The Viking Darts Player
Andy The Viking Darts Player

Fordham was the eldest of four children and was raised in the southeast London borough of Erith. His father, Sid, was an electrician, and his mother, Maureen, had a variety of part-time retail jobs, including one with the wholesale firm Makro, before becoming a full-time mother. When the family moved to another London suburb, Charlton, Andy attended Eaglesfield secondary school, where he earned the nickname “whippet” from his classmates because of his thin stature and skill as a quick-footed footballer.

When he was required to make up the numbers in the club’s darts squad while playing football in Greenwich, he was inspired to pursue his future sport of darts. In the beginning, he showed no evidence of his later prodigious abilities, but he loved the game and persevered.

During his time working as an apprentice plumber and later an electrician’s mate alongside his father, Fordham developed a broader interest in darts and developed a strong admiration for five-time world champion Eric Bristow, who was his hero. When his marriage to dental hygienist Jenny Vallely in 2000, he has shown considerable skill at the dart board, particularly since the pair took over operation of Woolwich bar The Queens Arms in 2002.