08:54AM, Sunday 19 May 2013
A dad-of-two from Maidenhead has been crowned world champion in the obscure sport of Toad in the Hole - which is only played in the pubs and bars of Sussex.
Brian Walker, from Boyn Hill Avenue, was part of a team that won the annual championships at Lewes Town Hall last month - known among the toad fraternity as the Wembley of the sport.
The 51-year-old played the game in his youth, but only became a serious competitor after facing the world champion while drinking in Lewes on his stag party in 2005 and agreeing to enter that year's competition.
Brian, who has two daughters aged 11 and 12, has won the championships twice with non-league teams.
The game is played with a large brass coin - the toad - which is tossed onto a small wooden table from about 7ft away.
Players score points by pitching the coin - about three times the width of a £2 coin - onto the table, and double points by slotting it through a hole in the table.
The winning team is the first to reach 31 points with the fewest throws.
"I played the game growing up in Worthing," said Brian, an IT services manager who moved to Maidenhead with his family 11 years ago.
"It is taken quite seriously in Sussex.
"More than 40 teams entered the championships."
Brian's team, 'The Old Azurians', featured his brother Dave, from Cardiff, 'Tigger' Stewart from Worthing, and former champion Ben Aquilina, from Lewes.
They defeated a side that included Brian's other brother Tim en route to the final where they beat the hot favourites and five-time champions 'The Laughing Fish' to win the trophy and lots of free beer.
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