Youngsters at a Birmingham school got the chance to quiz darts champion Phil "The Power" Taylor yesterday about his colourful career.
The 12-times world darts champion who is tipped for an award at the BBC Sports Personality of the Year ceremony this weekend, visited St John Wall Catholic School in Handsworth to talk to pupils.
Teenagers questioned the Staffordshire-born star about his colourful life and rise to the top of the tree in his sport.
Taylor, who took questions from the youngsters at a "press conference" organised by the school as part of a media awareness day, said: "They were lovely kids and were very well mannered."
Taylor is among a line-up of ten stars for Sports Personality of the Year on Sunday for his work changing the image of darts and bringing it out of the bar backroom.
The Stoke-on-Trent-based celebrity said he was getting used to his fame.
"I am very pleased about it. All of a sudden I am getting recognition for what I have done over the years."
Taylor, known for eschewing drink and advocating fitness, said the image of darts as hard-drinking men with beer bellies was beginning to shift. "Some people still look down their nose at it, but the image of sport across the board is changing. It is more professional – if you want to stay on top, you have to be."
Taylor’s visit to St John Wall was part of a day-long project organised with the BBC spotlighting the media. It included a live link with Robin Knox Johnson, the first man to sail single-handed around the world in 1968 who is currently at sea.
The school’s head John Hussey said: "We wanted to give the youngsters a better understanding of what the media is about.
"They are living in a 24/7 media society and the skills of journalism are transferable across a variety of professions." A group of four youngsters from the school also visited The Birmingham Post and Mail yesterday as part of the project.