‘We’ve finally done it!’ Paula relives TV debut

Paula Jacklin at the BDO World Championships
Paula Jacklin at the BDO World Championships

Gainsborough darts star Paula Jacklin captured the imagination of the sport’s fans, with her colourful BDO World Championships debut last week.

The 57-year-old made headlines with her spectacular walk on, which went viral on social media and was picked out as a highlight of the event by the BBC.

The event was televised live, and Jacklin was the subject of an interview piece before her match with the in-form Aileen De Graff, Netherlands’ number one player.

In the event, Jackin was ousted from the tournament at the quarter-final stage by De Graff, but put her name, and her county firmly on the darts map.

The mother of four, who dished out high fives and kisses to most of the fans lining the walkway to the oche and was draped in the Lincolnshire flag, said: “When I stepped out the crowd went absolutely crazy and I thought wow, we’ve finally done it.”

“To see my husband, my sons, my daughter and all our friends in the crowd, I had to fight every emotion in my body to hold it together.”

“At that point I realised I’d done the job, it was absolutely amazing I loved every minute.”

BBC presenter Colin Murray dubbed Jacklin a ‘breath of fresh air’ for the sport, and her walk on – to the tune of DJ Snake and Lil Jon’s single Turn Down for What – was viewed thousands of times on social media sites Vine and Twitter.

And darts fans hoping to see her in action again are in luck.

She explained: “I’ve got to do it all again next month on TV at the World Trophy in Manchester on 26th February.”

“I’ve got to get used to it because that’s where we’re heading.”

Jacklin, who will return to competitive action for her county at the Blues Club in Gainsborough this Sunday at 11am, insists her rise to the top has been a team effort.

“I want to thank my husband, family, friends and supporters, the 100s of them who sent messages and people from this townI dont even know– it means the world.!