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21 July 1945 |
New Tupton, Derbyshire, England
|Home town||Chesterfield, Derbyshire
|Playing darts since||1966|
|Darts||21g Unicorn World Champion Golden John Lowe|
|Walk-on music||Rock and Roll by Led Zeppelin|
|Organisation (see split in darts)|
|PDC||1993–2007 (Founding Member)|
|BDO majors - best performances|
|World Ch'ship||Winner 1979, 1987, 1993|
|World Masters||Winner 1976, 1980|
|PDC premier events - best performances|
|World Ch'ship||Semi-Final: 1995, 1996|
|World Matchplay||Semi-Final: 1995, 2002|
|World Grand Prix||Semi-Final: 2001|
|UK Open||Last 16: 2005|
|Other tournament wins|
|Australian Grand Masters
Autumn Gold Cider Masters
British Gold Cup
Dry Blackthorn Cider Masters
MFI World Pairs
North American Open
WDF Europe Cup Pairs
WDF World Cup Pairs
1978, 1979, 1982
1976, 1978, 1979, 1980, 1982, 1983, 1984, 1985, 1986, 1987
1979, 1980, 1982, 1983, 1984
1978, 1979, 1982
1984 – First televised nine-dart finish
|Updated on 11 February 2008.|
John Lowe (born 21 July 1945) is a former English professional darts player who was one of the most skilled and best known darts players during the 1970s and 1980s, particularly in the United Kingdom. Lowe is one of only six players to have won the World Championship three times, having done so in 1979, 1987, and 1993. The first player to win the World Championship in three separate decades, Lowe's titles and achievements span a career of almost forty years, but he is also most well known for being the first player to hit a televised nine dart finish (in 1984).
Lowe won the World Championship title in three different decades – 1979, 1987 and 1993. Although regarded as the gentleman of the game, he was in the shadow of Eric Bristow in the early days of darts' rise to prominence – in terms of results and charisma. He met Bristow six times in the World Championship in various semi-finals and finals and it was not until his fourth attempt (in the 1987 final) that he managed to overcome his great rival. His record against the "Crafty Cockney" in majors was three wins and six defeats.
Lowe achieved the ultimate feat in darts on 13 October 1984 during the World Matchplay tournament against Keith Deller when he managed a nine dart finish – the sport's equivalent of a hole-in-one in golf or a 147 break in snooker. This was the first time this had ever been accomplished by any darts player while being televised. For this, Lowe won £102,000. He went on to clinch the tournament.
In addition to his three world titles, Lowe has also won two World Masters titles, two British Open titles, two British Matchplay championships, two World Cup Singles and three European Cup Singles Titles, as well as countless other titles around the world in a hugely successful career. He played for England over 100 times and was captain for seven years, during which time his team were unbeaten.
He also gained credit for his decorum and sportsmanship at the oche, often in notable contrast to the gifted but arrogant Bristow. He was also probably unique in darts in that he looked after his health, never developing the weight difficulties associated with darts players, though he did consume alcohol onstage with the others when it was still permitted during matches.
Nicknames were all the rage in darts, but Lowe never really had one which caught on. A studious, composed performer, he didn't have anything which stood out in his demeanour or personality – until someone decided to use these very traits to come up with a soubriquet of Old Stoneface. This is also the title of Lowe's autobiography which was published in 2005.
Lowe has enjoyed a longevity at the sport that is currently unmatched. He played in the televised stages of the World Championship for a record 28 consecutive years from the inaugural championship in 1978 to his last appearance in 2005 where he was defeated by the Canadian John Verwey in a last leg tie-break.
He was secretary of the World Professional Dart Players Association (later to become the Professional Dart Players Association (PDPA)) and in 2005 enjoyed a testimonial year in the sport to commemorate his 30th year as a professional. He still attempted to qualify for the World Championship each year until 2008, but fell short in the early qualifying rounds. After joining a short-lived venture, the Setanta Sports televised BetFred League of Legends in 2008, Lowe became ineligible to compete at the PDC World Championship so could not attempt to qualify for the 2009 event.
In May 2009 Lowe released a book entitled The Art of Darts, in which he offered his personal insights into the game to both amateur and aspiring professional dart players. In 2013 The Art of Darts was produced in app form for the Apple iPhone and iPad, it is a 45 minutes master class containing coaching and tips from John.
Lowe planned an exhibition tour of the United States in November and December 2011, with possible stops including Boston, New York and Las Vegas.
In 2014, Lowe was one of several celebrities to take part in ITV new game show Amazing Greys, in which members of the public take on icons of British sport and entertainment.
World Championship Results
- 1978: Runner Up (lost to Leighton Rees 7–11 legs)
- 1979: Winner (beat Leighton Rees 5–0 sets)
- 1980: 2nd Round (lost to Cliff Lazarenko 0–2)
- 1981: Runner Up (lost to Eric Bristow 3–5)
- 1982: Runner Up (lost to Jocky Wilson 3–5)
- 1983: Quarter-Finals (lost to Keith Deller 3–4)
- 1984: Semi-Finals (lost to Eric Bristow 0–6)
- 1985: Runner Up (lost to Eric Bristow 2–6)
- 1986: Quarter-Finals (lost to Bob Anderson 3–4)
- 1987: Winner (beat Eric Bristow 6–4)
- 1988: Runner Up (lost to Bob Anderson 4–6)
- 1989: Semi-Finals (lost to Eric Bristow 1–5)
- 1990: 2nd Round (lost Ronnie Sharp 2–3)
- 1991: 1st Round (lost to Peter Evison 2–3)
- 1992: Semi-Finals (lost to Phil Taylor 4–5)
- 1993: Winner (beat Alan Warriner-Little 6–3)
- 1994: Last 24 Group (beat Tom Kirby 3–2 & (lost to Larry Butler 2–3)
- 1995: Semi-Finals (lost to Phil Taylor 4–5)
- 1996: Semi-Finals (lost to Phil Taylor 1–5)
- 1997: Last 24 Group (lost to Jamie Harvey 2–3) & (beat Paul Lim 3–1)
- 1998: Last 24 Group (lost to Peter Manley 0–3) & (lost to Gary Mawson 0–3)
- 1999: 2nd Round (lost to Phil Taylor 1–3)
- 2000: Quarter-Finals (lost to Dennis Smith 3–5)
- 2001: 2nd Round (lost to Jamie Harvey 0–3)
- 2002: 2nd Round (lost to Peter Manley 5–6)
- 2003: 2nd Round (lost to Les Fitton 1–4)
- 2004: 3rd Round (lost to Alan Warriner-Little 3–4)
- 2005: 2nd Round (lost to John Verwey 2–3)
BDO major finals: 26 (10 titles, 16 runner-ups)
|World Championship (3–5)|
|Winmau World Masters (2–3)|
|British Professional Championship (0–4)|
|World Matchplay (1–1)|
|Grand Masters (1–2)|
|British Matchplay (2–1)|
|News of the World (1–0)|
|Outcome||No.||Year||Championship||Opponent in the final||Score[N 1]|
|Winner||1.||1976||Winmau World Masters (1)||Phil Obbard||3–0 (s)|
|Winner||2.||1977||Butlins Grand Masters (1)||Eric Bristow||5–4 (s)|
|Runner-up||1.||1978||World Darts Championship||Leighton Rees||7–11 (l)|
|Winner||3.||1978||British Matchplay (1)||Tony Brown||2–1 (s)|
|Runner-up||2.||1978||Butlins Grand Masters||Leighton Rees||unknown|
|Winner||4.||1979||World Darts Championship (1)||Leighton Rees||5–0 (s)|
|Winner||5.||1980||Winmau World Masters (2)||Rab Smith||2–0 (s)|
|Runner-up||3.||1981||World Darts Championship (2)||Eric Bristow||3–5 (s)|
|Winner||6.||1981||News of the World Championship (1)||Mick Norris||2–0 (l)|
|Runner-up||4.||1981||Butlins Grand Masters (2)||Eric Bristow||unknown|
|Runner-up||5.||1981||British Professional Championship||Jocky Wilson||5–6 (s)|
|Runner-up||6.||1981||Winmau World Masters||Eric Bristow||1–2 (s)|
|Runner-up||7.||1982||World Darts Championship||Jocky Wilson||3–5 (s)|
|Runner-up||8.||1982||British Professional Championship (2)||Eric Bristow||3–7 (s)|
|Winner||7.||1984||World Matchplay (1)||Cliff Lazarenko||5–3 (s)|
|Runner-up||9.||1984||British Professional Championship (3)||Mike Gregory||5–7 (s)|
|Runner-up||10.||1985||World Darts Championship (4)||Eric Bristow||2–6 (s)|
|Winner||8.||1985||British Matchplay (2)||Cliff Lazarenko||3–0 (s)|
|Runner-up||11.||1985||British Professional Championship (4)||Eric Bristow||4–7 (s)|
|Winner||9.||1987||World Darts Championship (2)||Eric Bristow||6–4 (s)|
|Runner-up||12.||1987||World Matchplay||Bob Anderson||1–5 (s)|
|Runner-up||13.||1987||Winmau World Masters (2)||Bob Anderson||1–3 (s)|
|Runner-up||14.||1988||World Darts Championship (5)||Bob Anderson||4–6 (s)|
|Runner-up||15.||1988||British Matchplay||Bob Anderson||2–3 (s)|
|Runner-up||16.||1988||Winmau World Masters (3)||Bob Anderson||2–3 (s)|
|Winner||10.||1993||World Darts Championship (3)||Alan Warriner-Little||6–3 (s)|
- (l) = score in legs, (s) = score in sets.
WDF major finals: 6 (5 titles, 1 runner-up)
|World Cup (2–0)|
|Europe Cup (3–1)|
|Outcome||No.||Year||Championship||Opponent in the final||Score|
|Winner||1.||1978||Europe Cup Singles (1)||Jocky Wilson||4–1 (s)|
|Winner||2.||1981||World Cup Singles (1)||Jocky Wilson||4–3 (s)|
|Winner||3.||1984||Europe Cup Singles (2)||Leighton Rees||4–0 (s)|
|Winner||4.||1986||Europe Cup Singles (3)||Cliff Lazarenko||4–2 (s)|
|Winner||5.||1991||World Cup Singles (2)||Martin Phillips||6–4 (s)|
|Runner-up||1.||1992||Europe Cup Singles||Phil Taylor||2–4 (s)|
Lowe hit the first ever televised nine dart finish. This nine dart finish was not broadcast live.
|13 October 1984||Keith Deller||World Matchplay||3 x T20; 3 x T20; T17, T18, D18||£102,000|
- "John Lowe V Eric Bristow Head To Head". Dartsdatabase.co.uk. Retrieved 31 May 2015.
- "The Art of Darts". Amazon.co.uk. Retrieved 20 May 2011.
- Lowe, John. "America here I Come". Unicorn-darts.com. Retrieved 20 May 2011.
- [dead link]
- "Legends of Darts". Legendsofdarts.com. 20 June 2014. Retrieved 31 May 2015.
- Interview with John Lowe
- John Lowe's profile and stats on Darts Database
- John Lowe's Blog at Unicorn-Darts.com
- Nine Dart Finish from 1984 on YouTube