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Barry Hearn, sports promoter

2022-12-18 | 🔗
Barry Hearn is a promoter who has been at the forefront of some of the biggest snooker, boxing and darts events in the last 40 years. He played a central role in turning snooker into a television phenomenon, and as a boxing promoter he represented Chris Eubank and Nigel Benn. He later turned darts players, including Phil 'The Power' Taylor, into household names. Barry was born in Dagenham in East London in 1948 and grew up in a council house. At school, he enjoyed playing cricket and football, but freely admits he wasn’t good enough to become a professional player. Instead, he became an accountant and when one of the companies he worked for asked him to find some investment properties, he bought a chain of snooker halls. Barry took advantage of the snooker boom of the 1970s - which started after the BBC began televising competitions - and signed a young Steve Davis. Steve went on to win the World Snooker Championship in 1981 and Barry formed his company Matchroom the following year. He consolidated his success by moving into boxing and then introduced darts to a mainstream audience. In 2021 Barry was presented with a Lifetime Achievement Award at the Sport Industry Awards, and also handed over the chairmanship of Matchroom to his son Eddie. His daughter Katie also works for the company. Barry is reluctant to retire just yet, and remains company president, where his new role has given him some more free time to enjoy one of his favourite activities – fishing. DISC ONE: The Gambler by Kenny Rogers DISC TWO: Sweet Home Chicago by The Blues Brothers DISC THREE: Sunshine On My Shoulders by John Denver DISC FOUR: The Lonesome Boatman by Finbar & Eddie Furey DISC FIVE: Snooker Loopy by Chas 'n' Dave DISC SIX: The Best by Tina Turner DISC SEVEN: American Pie by Don McLean DISC EIGHT: Forest Lawn by Tom Paxton BOOK CHOICE: The Old Man and the Sea by Ernest Hemingway LUXURY ITEM: A fishing rod and rocking chair CASTAWAY'S FAVOURITE: Sunshine On My Shoulders by John Denver Presenter Lauren Laverne Producer Paula McGinley

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