Monday 5 December 2016

Darts star Bristow says sorry for branding abused footballers 'wimps'

Dean Gray

Published 01/12/2016 | 02:30

Eric Bristow
Eric Bristow

Former world darts champion Eric Bristow has apologised for calling footballers "wimps" in relation to the sport's abuse scandal.

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He was angrily confronted on television by Marilyn Hawes, mother of three sexually abused children and charity founder, who told Bristow: "If I had a set of darts I would stick them where the sun don't shine."

Bristow was also berated by 'Good Morning Britain' host Piers Morgan, who called on the 'Crafty Cockney' to apologise for writing on Twitter: "Might be a looney but if some football coach was touching me when i was a kid as i got older i would have went back and sorted that poof out." He added: "Dart players tough guys footballers wimps."

Bristow told 'Good Morning Britain': "It was worded wrong. I apologise, it was a miswording. They're not wimps."

He said he wanted young children to speak out if they were being abused.

"I want youngsters now to go out and complain straight away. There's no point complaining 30 years later," he said.

Bristow was dropped by Sky Sports as a pundit after making the comments on social media.

It also emerged yesterday that his manager had asked the BBC for £5,000 to do an interview - a request that the broadcaster declined.

Ms Hawes founded the charity Enough Abuse UK, which gives training and education on grooming.

Its website said she was a music teacher whose sons were sexually groomed and assaulted.

She called Bristow "a bully" in the heated exchange on 'Good Morning Britain', saying: "I find you to be the most deeply offensive man to breathe oxygen."

When questioned by Morgan's co-host Susanna Reid, the former darts champion said of child abuse: "It's rife, darling."

Morgan defended her, saying: "Don't call Susanna darling. She's not your darling."

Irish Independent

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