Darts stars' big warm-up
ANDY 'The Viking' Fordham has squared up to his rival in a darts match just days before entering a world tournament. The publican revealed how he invited Phil 'The Power' Taylor to his pub, the Rose in Overy Street, Dartford, for a few games as he prep
ANDY 'The Viking' Fordham has squared up to his rival in a darts match just days before entering a world tournament. The publican revealed how he invited Phil 'The Power' Taylor to his pub, the Rose in Overy Street, Dartford, for a few games as he prepared to enter the Lakeside BDO World Professional Darts Championshipship. He said he was glad of the challenge from the Ladbrokes.com World Darts champ in advance of his match with Australian Simon Whitlock this Sunday. Andy Fordham said: "I played some good games. The better the player, the better it is for you." Fordham's choice of guest may seem a little strange to some. The Dartford champ was, after all, playing Taylor when he had to pull out of the first round of the BDO championships in November 2004 due to ill health. But the pair remain good friends and the fact he chose to pit himself against the current champion is an indicator that the Viking is ready for battle again. He said: "Since Celebrity Fit Club I feel a lot better in myself. "I've been practising everyday for the last month and I have been playing 150 per cent more than normal. "I'd love to win again. I always said if I won it [the BDO World Championship] once I'd be happy, but now I've had it once I want it again. Winning is quite addictive." The former BDO World Champ lost three stone earlier this year after appearing in ITV 1's Celebrity Fit Club and says he feels healthier. He said: "It's nice to walk around and not get out of breath. I was gasping for breath just walking from the pub to a taxi parked outside, but now I feel a lot better. "I haven't been to the gym as much recently because I've been training for the darts, but after the tournament I'll go back to the gym again." Fordham was also made a qualified consultant nutritionist by the American Association of Nutritional Consultants at the end of 2004 in an experiment for the Tonight with Trevor MacDonald show. The darts champ, who then weighed 30 stone and claimed he had never led a healthy lifestyle, proved how easy it was for someone to claim they were an expert in nutrition by simply filling in a form and sending off 60 dollars. Although he refused to comment on whether he had given up his beloved Chinese food, Fordham did admit he had slipped back into drinking his favourite bottled beer again. "I have gone back on the beer for a little while," he said, "I was drinking wine, but I've gone back on the beer for the tournament." But even Dr Adam Carey or Harvey Waldon from Celebrity Fit Club could not deny the Viking his beer in the run up to the competition. Fordham said: "I've been playing darts a lot more so I am confident, but it's when you get up there that it hits you. "You can stand there and practice all day but when you get on to the stage, who knows. That's where the beer comes in.