Sheffield man meets up with Aussie snooker 'twin'

John Bird and David Jackson met up today
John Bird and David Jackson met up today
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Sheffield man John Bird has met his snooker 'twin', an Australian who has travelled halfway around the world for the past 20 years to watch the World Championships at the Crucible.

John finally met David Jackson after seeing him on the television at the championships, in his front-row seat.

The pair looked that much alike that many customers of John's optician shop commented that they had seen him watching the action.

"I'd say 'no you haven't'," he said.

The pair met when John tracked down David at the Crucible.

He'd read about David in The Star.

"So I knew his name," he said.

"And I knew he looked like me."

The two look more alike on TV than in person, John said.

"Certainly on television, as he sits there watching, I couldn't tell that it wasn't me," he said.

David agreed.

"There's definitely a lot of resemblance," David said.

David has racked up plenty of miles travelling to and from Australia each year. This is his 22nd visit to Sheffield.

He hails from the Sydney suburb of Gladesville, and has been involved in the sport since the 1970s.

David took up refereeing as a hobby.

"A large extent of my life has been involved with snooker," he said.

David has previously found fame in the spectator seat - not that he'd remember the picture being taken.

He was on the back page of a national newspaper more than 10 years ago, asleep, while watching the championships.

He struck a similar pose in five-time World Champion Ronnie O'Sullivan's book Ronnie.

"Ronnie is about to take the shot, and I'm asleep," David said.

John said it was a trait the pair shared.

"Just like me - I go to sleep just the same," he said.

David still rates O'Sullivan as the best player in the sport.

"He's a bit inconsistent, it's as simple as that," David said.

David said that compatriot Neil Robertson is his favourite player.

"I'm Australian, so I would say that," he said.

John and David say they're not the best with cues in their hands.

John's highest break is 21, and David's is 33.