A FORMER darts champion now stacks shelves for £9-an-hour – and he insists he absolutely “loves” his new career.
The 61-year-old John 'John Boy' Walton was crowned the BDO World Darts Championship back in 2001.
However, the Sheffield-born star suffered a neck injury and was eventually forced to retire from the oche several years ago.
That led to Walton embarking on a new venture stacking shelves at a Co-op in his hometown in 2019.
Despite the change career-wise, he is adamant that he enjoys every second of it.
He told the Sunday Mirror: “It’s a complete 180, but I love it.
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“I couldn’t play in tournaments because I wasn’t cutting it.
“I work part-time, one or two days a week. It’s not a financial thing, it’s just… to keep me occupied.
“I’ve struck up a load of friendships, and it’s nice to give something back to the community.”
Walton has also still managed to mingle with the stars as he previously revealed how he was recognised while working by TV presenter Dan Walker.
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He said: “We looked at each other, we both recognised each other – it was quite surreal.
“I couldn’t remember his name at the time but he knew mine.
“He asked me where the ice cream cones were but we had sold out.”
Walton is best remembered for his 2001 BDO World Darts Championship triumph, which earned him £46,000 in prize money, as he recorded a 6-2 win over Ted Hankey at the Lakeside Country Club.
The ace also lifted both the British Classic and British Open that same year.
Those successes came after ‘John Boy’ had been victorious at the 2000 World Masters event, beating Mervyn King 3-2 in the final.
Unfortunately for Walton he was unable to replicate that form for the remainder of his career, although he did reach several quarter-finals and a semi-final.
However, he returned to our TV screens last year to play in the Inaugural World Seniors Darts Championship.
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Walton beat fellow ex-world champs Les Wallace 3-2 and John Part 3-1 on his run to the quarter final, where he lost 3-1 to Terry Jenkins.
Walton then also competed in the Modus Super Series and Live League.
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