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Bullet shoots to top of darts world; Mersey man is crowned BDO champion.

Byline: HELEN HUNT @helen_echo

DARTS champion Stephen Bunting is on top of the world after claiming one of his sport's biggest prizes.

Stephen, nicknamed the Bullet, romped to victory against Alan Norris at the Lakeside Complex in Surrey yesterday, winning the BDO World Championship by seven sets to four.

It is the first time the 28-year-old from Fazakerley has won the tournament.

Norris had won a thrilling last-four clash with Jan Dekker to earn his spot but Stephen was always the tournament favourite after the top seed crushed Robbie Green 6-1.

Liverpool FC fan Stephen, who is based in St Helens, broke into tears as he picked up the trophy and thanked his family. He said he had been working towards the moment since he was just 11 years old.

He added: "This crowd has been absolutely brilliant, fantastic. To finally be crowned champion is absolutely magnificent. Thank you to everyone who has supported me. Thank you to my family, friends and my missus."

Stephen's dad has been sleeping in a camper van all week as he followed his son's success and supported on him on his journey to victory.

online Choked with emotion as he looked at his dad in the crowd, Stephen managed to say "love you too" with tears rolling from his eyes before leaving the stage. Log on to echo.co.uk news, sport His dad, also called Stephen, said he had already received text messages of congratulations.

He lived every arrow thrown by his son during the championship, and said: "It is the proudest day of my life."

Norris had put up a great fight and Stephen's dad said his son and Norris were "great mates" from the European circuit. He also said Norris had been a "brilliant" competitor.

www.liverpool for the latest and more He added: "It's brilliant. I can't explain.

"It's what he's been going for, for years and years, and he's done everything now."

CAPTION(S):

WINNER: Stephen Bunting (left) celebrates winning a crucial leg and, inset below, lifts the BDO World Championship trophy
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Publication:Liverpool Echo (Liverpool, England)
Date:Jan 13, 2014
Words:344
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