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FALLEN DARTS CHAMP VOWS TO BATTLE BACK.

Byline: CRAIG McGILL

FALLEN Scottish darts ace Les Wallace has vowed to make a comeback after coming to terms with personal tragedy.

The former world champion gave up the sport last year when his twin boys died a week after being born prematurely to his partner Carol Dear.

The couple found the pain so hard to bear that soon afterwards they split up.

"I was left shattered and just dropped darts from my life for a long time," said Les, who is originally from Forres, Moray, but now lives in Southampton.

"I have kept a low profile while I came to terms with the tragedy."

But now he is trying to put the heartache behind him and get his life back on track - even though last week he was given a suspended two-week jail term for non-payment of council tax.

Four years ago Les, 40, was the toast of the Scottish darts world when he was crowned world champion, making history as the first left-hander to do so and the second Scot to be the champion, following in the footsteps of Jocky Wilson.

Nicknamed MacDanger, Les wowed audiences by wearing his kilt while playing and having a piper lead him in to games.

"After I won the championship I started picking and choosing what tournaments I should play in and put more effort into settling down with Carol.

"I wanted to make a commitment to Carol and was delighted when she fell pregnant. But when the twins died we found it hard to bear and decided to split up. Everything since, including darts, has taken a second seat in my life."

Now the father of four children with the wife he is separated from, is hoping he can get back his form and has been practising at his local, the Kingsland Tavern.

"I played in the Dutch Open at the end of last month where I reached the second round, and I am hoping to enter the Scottish Open at the end of the month."

As for the council tax, he said: "I see it as a minor setback."

He said he was confident he could pay off the pounds 778.73 debt at pounds 150 a month required by the court.
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Publication:Sunday Mirror (London, England)
Date:Feb 18, 2001
Words:372
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