Alan Towe - A Look Back In Time - 1st December 2003
After a somewhat shaky opening starter away to County Durham, where they went down 23-13, West Midlands were quick to recover as they took on Devon at home at the Gilberts Bar, Willenhall, in the second of their division three fixtures in the BDO Inter Counties Championships.
The ladies ‘B’ were looking for their first win of the campaign following a 5-1 drubbing in the Durham fixture. They responded magnificently. Jenny Aston (West Midlands) lost the first to her namesake Jenny Prout. Durham Jenny opened up a 2-0 lead only to see West Midlands Jenny fight back to level terms. However, in the decider both ladies struggled on their finishing doubles and it was the visitor who eventually came up trumps.
The second encounter was a similar story, but in reverse. Debi Hackett (West Midlands) went 2-0 up, Joyce Wilson squared it at two each and Hackett won the fifth and final leg to level the match. From there on in it was one way traffic all in the West Midlands favour. Sara Jukes beat Susan Frankpitt 3-1, Teresa Johnson (18.41), with her lady of the match performance won by the same margin against Karen Chadd and putting the result beyond doubt was Lynn Reynolds with a straight three legs win over Penny Farrow. The final game also went to the hosts as Teresa Johnston came from one down against Trish Penberthy to win 3-1 and put the final score at 5-1.
The men’s ‘B’ side got their season underway with a 6-6 draw and so they also had room for improvement. The first half did not get off to a good start as Mark Turner (County Durham) won in straight legs against Lee Jones and although Alan Cockayne (West Midlands), with a similar scoreline accounted for Alan Long to erase Durhams lead, James Gregory was quick to restore it once more with his 3-2 victory over Mervyn Field, each leg going with the darts advantage. Gregory’s team mate, Neil Anstead increased the visitors lead to 3-1 when he defeated Bill Hadley 3-1. Nevertheless, by the midway point the running score was levelled at three after Fred Parsons won 3-1 against Simon Bennett and Lol Frazer, with a 3-0 result beat Vince Herd.
West Midlands took the lead for the first time in the game when in the opening tie of the second half Jamie Parsons won 3-0 against Geoffery Morrish. The lead was increased to 5-3 with a 3-2 win from Eddie Price at the expense of Brian Hodge.
Kevin Winter was Durham’s first winner of the second half. In game nine he raced to a 2-0 lead against Avtar Singh and although Singh pulled back to 2-2 it was Winter who got the 3-2 verdict. Adrian Arnold guaranteed his side at least a share of the spoils when he beat Thomas Quinn 3-0, but Frank Johnson was unable to chalk up the all important winning game when he was beaten 3-0 by Wayne Price. However, anchor man Viv Gould did get the necessary win to clinch a 7-5 victory, a 3-1 success against Matthew Dickinson.
So with two wins out of Saturday’s two games and West Midlands leading 12-6, an overall victory was definitely on the cards.
The ladies ‘A’ looked as though they were in for a real thrashing when the first three games all went to County Durham with the West Midlands unable to win a single leg. Winners for the away side were, Diane Carpenter, Merryl Jarman and Sandra Chamberlain, who in turn beat Angie Perry, Ann Jones and Claire Hobbs.
Stopping the rot was Sue Smith. Sue turned in a match award winning performance against Lynette Cottrell, beating her 3-0 and averaging 16.34. Kath Jenkins kept up the momentum with her 3-0 win over another Lynette, this time Paine to keep her team n the hunt at 2-3.
The final encounter could easily have swung either way as Carole Holdsworth (County Durham) won the first leg, then Janet Hubbard the next two. Holdsworth won the penultimate leg to force a deciding leg, which Hubbard won with her counterpart way back on 151. Janet’s win put the result at 3-3 to leave the men’s ‘A’ requiring just four wins for an overall win.
County Durham’s Trevor Perry beat Darren Williams in the opener for the final match of the weekend, the men’s ‘A’. Nevertheless it proved to be only a minor setback as Paddy Johnson, Ian Jones, John Pountney and Martin Tibbetts chalked up wins over their respective opponents Paul Godbeer, Paul Milford, Ian Knight and Colin Greenslade to ensure the overall win for the Midlanders and put them right on course for the ‘A’ teams first win of the campaign.
Rounding off the first session was David Evans (West Midlands) and Christopher Hunt. Evans took the lead twice but finally conceded the fifth leg after failed throws at a finishing double to give his opposite number a 3-2 win.
The visitors drew first blood again in the opening tie of the second half when Terry Hays, in just three legs accounted for Gary Taylor, but Ian Hartland quickly restored the two games cushion with a 3-2 win over Andrew Taylor, after trailing at one stage by 2-1. Peter Wyse (West Midlands) extended the home teams lead to 6-3 beating Martin Bevan 3-1, when Bevan had won the first leg.
With a draw now guaranteed, Richard Foster, at number ten chalked up the all important seventh win to put the reslt beyond Durham’s reach. Playing against Flynn Jones, Foster was twice pegged back to level terms but went on to win the deciding leg and in the process the man of the match award with his 27.36 average.
Andrew Steed (County Durham) won the penultimate game by 3-2 over Mick James, who had stormed into a 2-0 lead only to see Steed bounce back and win the game. The last game went to Midlands Chris Hickman, who defeated William Steve-Lewis 3-2. Chris won the first leg, William the following two and then Hickman in fine style won the fourth with a 114 checkout and the last with a 116 finish giving a result of 8-4 to the hosts and an overall win of 23-13.
The draw for the third round of the ever popular Bedworth Gateway Open Darts Competitions have been made and are as follows, Men’s:- Low Moor WMC ‘A’ (Bradford) v Commercial Hotel (Cheshire) or Brown Horse (Merseyside), Nags Head ‘A’ (Peterborough) v Five All’s ‘A’ (Cambridgeshire), Lincolnshire Nailer (Skegness) v Snooker Social Club (West Midlands), Wheathampstead Social Club v (Hertfordshire) v Nags Head (West Midlands), Wednesbury RBL ‘A’ (West Midlands) or Rock Fountain (Shrewsbury) v White Horse (Walsall) or Glassey Inn (West Midlands), High Street WMC ‘A’ (Swindon) v White Hart (Swindon), Six in Hand (Gwent) v Oak Ivy (West Midlands), Three Horseshoes (Coventry) v Boot Inn (Nuneaton), White Hart (Northampton) v Cricketers Arms (Bedworth), Duple Social Club (Blackpool) v Crown and Cushion (West Midlands), Fosters Arms ’A’ (Shropshire) v Tipton Social Club (West Midlands), Low Moor WMC ’B’ (Bradford) v Cottage Spring (West Midlands), Erwood Inn (Powys) v Dovy Inn (Worcester), Bees Knees (Cirencester) or Bear Rugged Staff (Bristol) v Brewers Arms (Cirencester) or Broadstone (West Midlands), Three Horseshoes (Coventry) v Woodlands WMC (Bedworth), Stirchley United WMC (Birmingham) v Nottingham Oddfellows Social Club (Leicester). Women’s:- Dunstable Town FC (Bedworth) v Black Horse (Worcester) or Rock Fountain (Shrewsbury), Six in Hand (Gwent) v Air Balloon Tavern (Bristol), Lincolnshire Nailer (Skegness) v New Warwick Social Club (Warwick), Newport Pagnall WMC (Milton Keynes) v White Hart (Swindon) or Gorse Hill WMC (Swindon).
On the local league front congratulations go to the Heartlands Club team, who have won the Small Heath Summer League title. Heartlands finished on 28 points, losing just one of their fourteen match season. Custard House and Victoria 301 Club ended their programme with 20 points. Custard House having the superior average took the runners up spot.
Steve Cain (Heartlands Club) lifted the singles crown beating Neil Parsonage, from the Black Horse in the final. Losing semi finalists were Seamus Gallagher (Great Western) and Ian McLean (Custard House). Quarter finalists were Dave Brown, Kevin Maloney (Custard House) and Nigel Ricketts and Dave Carter (Antelope).
Steve Cain was on the mark again in the doubles knockout. Teaming up with Pat Koyce, the duo beat Mark Kane and Brendan Lysaught (Heartlands Club) in the final. Reaching the last four were Chris Stokes and Mick O’Sullivan (Victoria 301 Club) and Neil Parsonage and John Hudson (Black Horse).
Finally I would like to thank everyone who has contributed to this column throughout the past year and take this opportunity to wish everyone, everywhere a very Merry Christmas and a Happy and Prosperous New Year.