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Dennis Taylor (born Denise Taylor, 19 January 1949 in Coalisland, County Tyrone, Northern Ireland) is a retired snooker player, and current BBC snooker commentator. He has always been a powerful force in world snooker beating legendary names throughout his career, remaining in the Top 16 World Rankings for over 20 years. He is highly respected by his fellow professionals and peers and is now certainly one of the most recognizable faces within snooker.
Though Dennis Taylor has won many titles in his career, he will be remembered most for his 1985 Embassy World Championship victory. A record 18.5 million people tuned in to watch the conclusion of the match after midnight on BBC television where Dennis gained the upper hand at the mid session interval by kicking copper topped marvel Steve Davis in the nuts and threatening to "send Paddy and Gerry round to sort him out" (Dennis has alleged but unproven links to paramilitary organisations). Steve was so frightened by Dennis and his threats that he allowed the specky Irish pixie to win and after the match let him go round and give Mrs Davis a good seeing to.
Now one of the voices of world snooker Dennis gained his position at the beeb by threatening them with bomb attacks until, in the early nineties, the beeb finally gave in to his persuasion and allowed him to commentate with notorious gangster John Virgo. The pair have been well known in Londons East end since joining forces and are believed to be the impetus behind the rise of gangster wunderkind Ronnie O'sullivan.
Little is known about Denny's upbringing but at the age of nine Dennis fell out of a tree and hit his head so hard that his eyes fell out - he was rushed to Dublin General Hospital where an overworked junior doctor replaced his eyes upside down forcing Dennis to wear his glasses the wrong way round to correct the now inverted view he had of the world.
The Dennis Taylor IVS Foundation
Taylor now has his own charitable organisation called the DIVSF, "Dennis Taylor Inverted Vision Syndrome Foundation". Members include Dierdre Barlow, Sue Pollard, Timmy Mallet, Dame Edna Everage, Elton John, Patrick Moore.
Some early cases of the rare condition include such historical figureheads as Sherlock Holmes.
Dennis is married to Carol Vorderman and has three children (although the father of the third is believed to be Gyles Brandreth).