DARTS ace Simon Whitlock shows no fear when he stands at the oche.
And now it seems he’s as fearless when walking into a tattoo parlour.
During his incredible run at the Ladbrokes World Championship, he has celebrated each win by getting a tattoo.
The darts player, who hails from Australia and is nicknamed The Wizard of Oz, moved to Waterlooville a year ago to be closer to his agent.
He befriended tattooist Stuart Walker, 28, who runs Tatoo Incorporated at the Westbrook Centre in Cowplain.
The 42-year-old former brick layer celebrated his opening two victories at London’s Alexandra Palace by getting a dartboard and a pile of bricks inked on to his arm.
He returned there on Saturday to get more work done to the dartboard tattoo in preparation for yesterday’s nail-biting semi-final match with Andy Hamilton, which he narrowly lost.
Regarding his tattoo addiction, Simon said: ‘It’s very painful especially when they did the inside of the arm.
‘It hurts a lot. I find it helps my concentration level.
‘It’s like when you are playing, you are blocking out the crowd and just focussing on the dartboard.
‘It all helps.’
Simon beat the odds to storm through the championships.
Against doctor’s advice, he has been playing with a broken left ankle, which is being held together by screws.
He said: ‘I have sort of surprised myself.
‘I was not sure how I was going to do in the first match because I only had a week’s preparation.
‘I was not even supposed to be walking on my leg.’
Tattooist Stuart added: ‘It’s been great fun.
‘He’s a great bloke.
‘It’s just nice to have somebody like him come into the shop. It’s a great privilege.’
He added: ‘He sits and chats away.
‘We have a laugh.
‘It always makes it easier when you can have a conversation with the customer.’
Simon, who boasts seven tattoos, moved into his new house two weeks ago and said he loves the Portsmouth area – and has become a fan of the Blues.
He added: ‘I am a big fan of Pompey. I have met some great people.’
Simon was considering getting a tattoo of a trophy if he won the championship.
Lewis Jones, 27, who helps manage Simon with Waterlooville-based firm Modus Darts, said: ‘He sees it as the pain barrier and it helps him. He’s done it the last two years and it’s a good omen for him.’