Robert Francis George (born 16 December 1945) is an English darts player and presenter. He is widely recognised as one of the game's biggest personalities, known for his flamboyant entrances in which the "King of Darts" makes his way to the stage bedecked in jewellery, wearing a crown and cloak and holding a candelabra to the sound of Queen's "We Are the Champions".
George won several leading darts tournaments, appeared in two World Championship finals and was the first full-time exhibition player. Since 1998, he has also worked for the BBC as a co-presenter and promoter of the sport during their coverage of various darts tournaments.
George only took up darts at the age of 30, but quickly improved, winning the first tournament he entered, and then making his first appearance at the World Masters less than a year later. He has won several tournaments around the world, including the prestigious News of the World Championship in 1979 and 1986, the Butlins Grand Masters in 1979 and 1980, and the Nations Cup in 1980, as part of an England triples team with Tony Brown and John Lowe. George's News of the World victory in 1979 came without dropping a single leg, the only player to do so.
George has reached the final of the World Professional Darts Championship twice. His first final in 1980 was his first appearance in a World Darts Championship but he lost at the last hurdle to Eric Bristow. George reached his second world final in 1994, despite breaking his back when celebrating winning a set during his quarter final match against Kevin Kenny. George got through that match against Kenny by 4-2 in sets, having damaged his back when celebrating going 3-0 up. In his semi final match against Magnus Caris, George went 2 sets up, but then lost the next 4 sets and the opening 2 legs of the seventh set. When Caris missed a dart at double 18 to win the match, George responded by winning 9 legs in a row to win the match 5-4 in sets. Competing in the final against doctor's advice, George lost 0-6 to John Part.
Since 1998, George has been a co-presenter and pundit on the BBC darts coverage, primarily of the BDO World Championship. He has also made several other television appearances, not all relating to darts. In 2004 he starred in the British comedy film One Man and His Dog and later he followed in the footsteps of fellow professional darts player Andy Fordham by taking part in the ITV programme Celebrity Fit Club. In 2006, he appeared in a regular segment of Brainiac: Science Abuse series 4, in which he played darts in order to explode caravans. He was also a team captain in Showbiz Darts again alongside Fordham. In 2010 Bobby performed Run DMC's 'walk this way' on Lets Dance for Sport Relief with Tony O'Shea, Willie Thorne, and Dennis Taylor.
His colourful character has enabled George to also be successful on the darts exhibition circuit. He became the games first full-time exhibition player when he stopped playing regular tournaments in 1986. In 2009 he teamed up with Bristow and John Lowe to tour theatres around the UK and Ireland, appearing in a show named Legends of the Oche which was presented and hosted by comedian Duncan Norvelle. He also appeared in a 2009 episode of BBC's Cash in the Attic
Essex Masters: 1976,
North American Open: 1978,
News of the World Darts Championship: 1979, 1986,
Butlins Grand Masters: 1979, 1980,
WDF Europe Cup: 1982 (men's singles & team),
World Championship Results:
1980: Runner Up (lost to Eric Bristow 3-5),
1981: Quarter-finals (lost to Cliff Lazarenko 0-4),
1982: Semi-finals (lost to John Lowe 1-4),
1983: First round (lost to Tony Brown 0-2),
1984: First round (lost to Malcolm Davis 1-2),
1985: Second round (lost to Fred McMullan 1-3),
1986: First round (lost to Bob Anderson 0-3),
1987: First round (lost to John Lowe 0-3),
1993: Semi-finals (lost to John Lowe 3-5),
1994: Runner Up (lost to John Part 0-6),
1995: First round (lost to Ronnie Sharp 0-3),
1997: Second round (lost to Roland Scholten 0-3),
1998: Second round (lost to Sean Palfrey 2-3),
2000: Second round (lost to Ronnie Baxter 2-3),
2002: First round (lost to Raymond van Barneveld 1-3),
George was born in Manor Park, London. After leaving school, he had various jobs including as a nightclub bouncer and floor layer before taking up darts.
George lives with his wife and manager Marie (born 1960) and their sons Robert George (born 1987) and Richie George (born 1989), at George Hall, an 18-bedroom self-built mansion he jokingly refers to as "the house that Bobby built". The Hall is located on 12 acres (49,000 m) of land once owned by William the Conqueror in Ardleigh near Colchester on the borders of Essex and Suffolk. The layout of the rooms have been designed to look like a dartboard. George is a keen fisherman, and within the George Hall grounds are well-stocked fishing lakes. George also has two grandsons, Robert Jr (son of Robert) and Edward (son of Richie), who were born with 24 hours of each other in July 2013.
His son Richie is also a professional darts player. He reached the semi-final of the 2013 BDO World Darts Championship, losing to eventual champion Scott Waites.
George has worked as an ambassador for basic arithmetic, touring schools teaching children how darts can help with counting skills.
"Ton-eighties (or scores or trebles) for show and doubles for dough.",
"Throw where you're looking and look where you're throwing.",
"That's the way to do it, Luvverly jubberly.",
"May the darts be with you.",
(after being asked about a player's chances in a match) "It's like a computer, innit. If you press D, you play darts. If you press something else, you play like" (corpsing) "something else..."