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Article: A Look Back In Time - 1st March 2008

A Look Back In Time - 1st March 2008

Two games within two weeks for the West midlands in division two of the Kaliber BDO Inter Counties Championships and what important games they were. The first of those fixtures was a home tie against top of the table Nottinghamshire. The match got off to a great start as the ladies ‘B’ stormed into an unassailable 4-0lead. Kim Fellows started the ball rolling with a straight 3-0 win over Dawn Speed. Claire Ford had to twice come from behind against Shirley Truman before gaining 3-2 victory to double the advantage. A lady of the match performance from Diane Tolley (18.69) earned her a 3-1 success over Julie Freshney and with a 3-2 win from Sarah Robbins against Barbara McColl the win was guaranteed by the fourth game.

It was the penultimate encounter before Nottinghamshire recorded their first winner and it came in the shape of Margaret Shipley. Margaret was in good form to beat Julie Aston 3-0. The last game went to Lisa Astbury, another three legs win in her tie with Susan Page-Looker to give West Midlands a 5-1 victory, their first win since the curtain raiser in September when they beat Sussex 5-1.

With two wins and two draws the men’s ‘B’ were looking to extend that unbeaten run and that was exactly what they did. West Midlands veteran Jack Routledge was in great form to beat Rob Trownson 3-0 in 18, 19 and 17 darts to record a 27.83 average and at the end of the day take the man of the match award. Martin Angell doubled the lead when he, again in only three legs accounted for John Speed. Chris Jones was made to fight all the way for his win over Tom Allies, twice coming from behind before claiming the 3-2 verdict. Taking the scoreline along to 4-0 was Avtar Singh who beat Mathew Padgett 3-1.

It was game number five that Nottinghamshire got their first winner, Richard Cooper winning 3-1 against Mark Lloyd, who had taken a 2-0 lead. However, the half was ended with a further win for the hosts as Mat Dicken won 3-1 against Darren Breedon to open up a 5-1 advantage.

A 3-1 win from Wes Dean over Robert Carr reduced the arrears slightly for the visitors, but a 3-0 success from Paul Price assured the home team of at least a share of the points. Neil Ward pulled another back for Nottinghamshire when he beat Chris Plumpton 3-1, but Viv Gould’s (West Midlands) similar win over Pete Allsopp was the vital seventh win to extend their unbeaten run to five games.

The last two games both went to Nottinghamshire, Andy Kerr won 3-1 against Stuart Kendrick and Mark Dewsberry won 3-0 in is tie with Eddie Price to give a final score of 7-5 to West Midlands.

Nottinghamshire got the better start in Sunday’s games as Sharon Beastall and Laura Tye in turn defeated Jayne Stubbs and Claire Hobbs. Sara Jukes was the home side’s first winner, accounting for Julie Wilson with a 3-2 win after her opponent had gone 2-0 up. Eleanor Dunn made it an uphill battle for West Midlands when she beat Kath Jenkins 3-2 to give her team a 3-1 lead.

Leanne Jennings (West Midlands) gave what has become her regular performance as she won in three straight legs against Lesley Allick and her 23.48 gave her the match award for the fifth consecutive game of the season. The final encounter was another three legs affair with Chris Banks adding a vital third win to the teams tally with her 3-0 success over Nicola McNamara. The final score three each.

With the men’s ‘A’ requiring just four winners for an overall victory the match was decided in the first half. N.Bache and Chris Hickman both had 3-1 wins over respective opponents Trevor Ellis and Paul Harvey. Chris Cooper pulled one back for Nottinghamshire with a 3-2 win over Mick James only to see Mark Rollinson restore the two legs buffer when he beat Dave Brown 3-1.

Tom Allies was the visitors second winner, a 3-0 success against Dave Arnold, but it was Steve Farmer who got the all important fourth win when he defeated Dave McGarry 3-0 in the last game of the first half.

Three more wins were added at the start of the second half, Richard Foster was first with a 3-0 win over Jay Foreman and was followed by Mark Jones who beat Micky Pitchford, also in three legs. At number nine came Jamie Hughes who turned in a tremendous match award winning performance against Mark Wilson. Hughes recorded winning legs in 13, 16 and 15 darts to chalk up a fantastic 35.79 average taking the score along to an unbeatable 7-2.

Neil Birkin and Barry Bennett made the scoreline a little more respectable when they in turn beat Lol Frazer and Peter Wyse. The final score was 8-4 after anchor man Ian Jones added his 3-2 win over Tim Broadhurst to the tally.

The 23-13 overall win saw West Midlands knock Nottinghamshire off the number one spot and replacing them was Derbyshire, West Mids moving up one place into second.

Game number two was an away tie against Northumberland. Chris Caldow and Lorraine Laidler put the host two up with 3-1 wins over Sarah Robbins and Kim Fellows, but from there on in it was one way traffic all in favour of West Midlands. Claire Ford

(18.33) began the run of four wins with a lady of the match 3-0 win over Diane Hood, then came wins from Lisa Astbury, Julie Aston and Jacqui Simmons at the expense of Lil Frost, Liz Kelly and Caroline Whittle to give the ‘B’ side a 4-2 win.

With both men’s teams having won three and drawn two they were keen to keep that run going. Martin Angell, Paul Price and Mick Noakes gave the West Midlands the perfect start with win over respective opponents Jimmy Blakey, Jamie martin and Paul Hodge. However, the home side wee quick to respond and Simon Dodds, Spencer McGarry and Paul Sinclair levelled the game when they defeated Colin Wood, Viv Gould and Jack Routledge.

The second half was almost a carbon copy of the first. Avtar Singh, Greg Parkes and Mark Lloyd (West Midlands) all won in their games with Paul Webb, Gary Reed and Phil Clements to move the score along to 6-3 to the visitors. It was then the turn of Northumberland as Kev Browne and Darren Bell gave their side a lifeline by beating Chris Plumpton and Mat Dicken.

The last game of the day saw Chris Jones gain a 3-1 win over Steve Shaw to give the Midlanders a 7-5 win.

The ladies ‘A’ team are fast becoming the leagues draw specialists and this game was no different as they made it four draws, one win and one defeat in their six fixtures so far. The first point went to the home team when Ali Murphy won 3-0 against Chris Banks. The response from the away team was immediate Jayne Stubbs beat Joy Wanless 3-2, Claire Hobbs won 3-0 against Cath Groves and what is now becoming the norm Leanne Jennings maintained her 100% lady of the match performance with a 3-1 win over Pam Knott and a 21.28 average.

The last two games both went to Northumberland, Irene Mowbray beat Diane Tolley 3-2 and Angela Best won 3-0 against Kath Jenkins to end the game at three each.

As with the previous match against Nottinghamshire the men’s ‘A’ had sealed an overall win by the midway point. Dave Arnold, Martin Angell and Richie Foster stormed to a 3-0 lead with Darren Gray, Graham Begbie and Steve Wanless on the receiving end. Paul Sinclair pulled one back for the hosts with his 3-1 win over Nick Bache, but with a superb 151 checkout in his final leg against Dave Richardson, Mark Rollinson restored the three games advantage. Rounding off the first half Ian Jones was in tremendous form. He began his game with Simon Dodds with a 15 darts leg, followed that with a 16 darts game and finished off with a fabulous 13 darts leg in which he scored 60, 180, 140, 97 and checked out on double twelve to give him a match award average of 34.16.

Lol Frazer took the score along to 6-1 when he won 3-2 against Alan Davie, but then Northumberland stepped up a gear and forced themselves back into the game. Colin Saunby, Andy Dillon, Dave Mateland and Robbie Parkes chalked up wins against Chris Hickman, Stuart Kendrick, Jamie Hughes and Peter Wyse to give a running tally of 6-5 to the West Midlands and what at one stage appeared to be a run away victory for the away team now had the result hinging on the final game between Ian Gleeson and Steve Farmer. Farmer stuck to his task, a 3-0 win and a 28.36 average giving his team a 7-5 win and an overall 21-15 victory for the fixture.

With Derbyshire beating Berkshire 20-16 west Midlands win put them level on the same 134 points, but with the better average have now taken over the number one spot and with only three remaining fixtures it is now looking a real possibility of promotion to division one next season.

The Pip Club League rounded off their season when division one teams Globe Inn and Dolphin played off their outstanding fixture. The result was a convincing 7-1 win for Dolphin to give them the runners up spot, two points behind champions Glascote Club. Queens Head finished with the same 18 points as Dolphin but lost out on the second place by having just one leg fewer than Dolphin.

The league also played their divisional singles knockouts. In division one the winner was M.Martin with I.Turner the runner up. Losing semi finalists were R.Snaith and P.Sweet.

T.Barrs took the division two title with a final success over R.Baker. Losing out in the last four were T.Beech and A.Duffy.

The recent Tipton Darts Open staged at the Tipton Sports and Social Club turned out to be a battle of the Jones’ as Wayne and Ian fought it out for the first prize of £500. The result was a win for Ian and Wayne as runner up collected £200. Losing semi finalists Steve Farmer and Richard Platt both received £100, while the quarter finalists Matt Dicken, Dave Honey, Kevin Harris and Mark Jones picked up £25 each.

The women’s title and the £40 that went with it was won by Debbie Doonan with Lizzie Arnold collecting £30 as runner up. Michelle Doonan and Nikki Thompson received £10 each for reaching the last four.

Finally I end this month’s column on a depressing note. I have been writing for Darts World for around thirty years and like my column in the Evening Mail have unfortunately had to write quite a number of articles regarding players and officials who have died. Sadly this latest one is very personal, it is of my own father Albert Towe, who passed away suddenly on Sunday 3rd February at Russells Hall Hospital, Dudley, just ten days short of his 87th birthday.

Although never a darts player my dad was a licensee for many years and was always keen to promote darts in both of the pubs he managed, the Fir Tree and the Struggling Man, both in Dudley. He was always very proud of what not only I, my brother Peter and later on my son Clive achieved on the board but also the successful story of the many teams we had during his time in the two pubs.

He will be greatly missed by all his family and his many, many friends.

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