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Article: Alan Towe's The Line

Alan Towe's The Line

West Midlands finished their first season in the Premier Division of the BDO Inter County Championships just above the relegation zone with 149 points, nine more than Cambridgeshire who finished bottom and just four to the good on Devon who were relegated with Cambridgeshire as they were next to bottom of the league table, they will begin their second season in the Premier Division with a home tie against newly promoted Northamptonshire. Northamptonshire with 197 points gained promotion from division one last season with divisional champions Essex who ended their campaign with 210 points, thirteen more than Cambridgeshire who were closely followed by third placed Oxfordshire who narrowly missed out on promotion as they had 193 points four short of Cambridgeshire. After their first season in the top flight West Midlands will be hoping the experience will lead them to better things this season although they began their last campaign with some good results as in the opening four games they won two, drew one and only lost one and that was to neighbouring Warwickshire, however from there on in it was to say the least a little disappointing as they lost all of their final five fixtures.
The Crown at Olton hosts the Dunky’s Double Top League and the 22 strong league has completed its season with Bob Nixon donning the winners crown after amassing a total of 74 points five more than runner up Andy Hutchings who in turn was two to the good on John Sidwell who finished third. [caption id="attachment_35315" align="aligncenter" width="640"] Dunky's Double Top League Sue Kingdon (Organiser), Bob Nixon (Champion) and Andy Hutchings (Runner Up)[/caption] The league’s doubles knockout was made up of a player from the top half being paired with a player from the bottom half and once again it was Bob Nixon who collected the winners prize and yet again Andy Hutchings runner up as Nixon and his partner Darren Wilson won the final 3-1 against Hutchings and Phil Henderson. [caption id="attachment_35316" align="aligncenter" width="640"] Dunky's Double Top League Doubles Knockout Sue Kingdon (Organiser), Darren Wilson and Bob Nixon (Winners) plus Andy Hutchings[/caption]
The West Midlands Men’s Super League have got their new season underway and after the opening seven fixtures only three of the starting line-up of eighteen teams remain undefeated and they are Allen’s Sports Bar ‘A’, Yeltz Bar and Woodside Inn. Allen’s Sports Bar ‘A’ top the table with 46 points and have a slender lead of just two points over second placed Yeltz Bar while Woodside Inn are placed fourth in the table with 35 points from six games and have a game in hand on the to two teams. At the other end of the table there are three teams still seeking their first win Victoria, Allens Sports Bar ‘B’ and Horse and Jockey.
The Netherton Thursday Night League staged the finals of their doubles knockout which was well supported and produced some first class darts. Winning the title were R.Carr and D.Brown (Dudley Ex Serviceman’s Club) who in the final had a straight 3-0 victory over A.Cowley and C.Hadlington (White Horse). In the last four games Carr and Brown beat A.Dubberley and D.Ferney (Riddins Tavern) 2-0 while Cowley and Hadlington also won 2-0 against M.Ferney and A.Ghaley again from Riddins Tavern.
Dudley Ex Serviceman’s Club staged a Bank Holiday Monday Knockout which attracted an encouraging 40 entries. The quarter finals saw 3-0 wins for Lee Stevens and Josh Pickett who in turn defeated Alex Nicholls and Andy Bennett. The other two last eight games had very close 3-2 results with Martin Rowley beating Tom Bissell and Neil Steventon winning against Rob Powers. Both semi-finals went to a deciding leg with Martin Rowley and Lee Stevens just getting the 4-3 edge against respective opponents Neil Steventon and Josh Pickett. The final also went to the wire with Lee Stevens getting the 5-4 verdict against Martin Rowley to take the top prize of £165 with Rowley picking up £80. Losing semi-finalists Steventon and Pickett received £35 each and there was £10 for Tom Bissell, Rob Powers, Alex Nicholls and Andy Bennett for reaching the quarter finals.
As the new C’s Club Double Top League nears the halfway point of its inaugural season Neil Parsonage with 29 wins from 30 games leads the field with a total of 81 points. After missing a few games through work commitments Luis Barberan has now caught up with his outstanding fixtures, however a 3-0 defeat to fourth placed Tom White in week fifteen, Barberan’s third loss in 30 games, could prove to be very costly as he now trails Parsonage by some seven points. Jake Webster is third in the table and although he is just one point behind Barberan he has played one game more than him and Parsonage. Tom White is placed fourth with 70 points, he has a game in hand on the top two and two in hand on Webster.
The top two players in the Shirley Premier League are Steve Sidwell and Phil Thomas, both have played 28 games with Sidwell on 88 points and Thomas 86. Week fourteen saw Sidwel have his lead cut to just two points when he kicked off the evening with a 2-2 draw with Ken Hopton followed by a 3-1 win over Chris Thomas while second in the table Phil Thomas added a 4-0 win over Chris Thomas snr and a 3-1 win against Ken Hopton to his account to reduce the arrears. Mark Henderson held on to third place with a 4-0 win over Ryan Brogan plus a 2-2 draw with Mark Gwalchmai to take his points tally to 83 from 29 games and give him a six points buffer between him and fourth in the table Tom Bent who has played 28 games.
I end this month’s column on a sad note as I report the passing of Alan Wale as he finally lost his battle with cancer. Alan played for many years in the Small Heath, Sheldon and Camp Hill leagues representing the Devil’s Club, Sheldon Marlborough Club and Small Heath Amateur Gardeners. One of Alan’s darts colleagues Paul Brown summed Alan up saying “An absolute legend of a man, always full of life and laughing he will be missed by everyone who knew him”. Condolences go to Alan’s family and friends
ECC Sports and Social Club, Wolverhampton by Alan Towe The ECC Sports and Social Club, Wolverhampton is fast becoming a major venue for darts throughout the area, the latest “Free” to enter knockout attracted international, county, super league and local league players in what was a superb day of darts. The eventual finalists were former BDO world champion Stephen Bunting and world ranked Jim Williams, Bunting made his way through to the final from group two with wins over Paul Dicken, Mathew Moore and Richard Hosey. In the last sixteen he won 4-2 against Dave Pallett. He then defeated Chris Dale 5-3 in the quarter finals and with a 6-3 success against James Richardson booked his place in the final. [caption id="attachment_35391" align="aligncenter" width="448"]Stephen Bunting, Red Dragon Darts, Prostate Cancer, Tracey Edgecombe ECC Knockout Winner Stephen Bunting with Tracey Edgecombe (Teamdarts)[/caption] Jim Williams was winner of group four and began his title chase by taking out Gary Dennant and Matt Dennant. To reach the last four he then won 4-1 against Dave Evans, had a 5-3 win against Ashley Passmore and accounted for Adam Smith-Neale with a close 6-5 verdict to book a final showdown with Bunting. The final was the best of eleven legs with 2014 BDO world champion and currently ranked PDC No 20 Stephen Bunting taking the top prize of £700 after a 7-4 win against the BDO world No 3, Welshman Jim Williams who received £300 as runner up. There was £100 for each of the losing semi-finalists James Richardson and Adam Smith-Neale plus £50 for Ben Davies, Chris Dale, Scott Baker and Ashley Passmore who all lost in the quarter finals. Full Results:Group One:Preliminary Round:- Arron Colley lost to Conor Whitehouse, Matt Padgett beat Chris Hill, Pat Pace beat Martin Rowley, Steve Gillam beat Tracey Dawkins, Jonathan Platt beat Arron Richardson, Luke Woodhouse beat Malcolm Caddick, Paul Bon Jovi lost to Craig Venmon, Alf Turley beat Luke Moreton, Keilan Morton lost to Paul Price, Rob Powers lost to James Richardson, Mick Noakes lost to Dean Saunders, Matt Tedstone lost to Bryan Perry, Wayne Fox lost to Glen McGrandle, Last 64:- Jamie Hughes beat Kevin Harris, Ben Davies 4 Conor Whitehouse 1, Matt Padgett beat Pat Pace, Steve Gillam lost to Jonathan Platt, Luke Woodhouse 4 Craig Venmon 3, Alf Turley lost to Paul Price, James Richardson beat Dean Saunders, Bryan Perry 0 Glen McGrandle 4, Last 32:- Jamie Hughes lost to Ben Davies, Matt Padgett 3 Jonathan Platt 4, Luke Woodhouse 4 Paul Price 0, James Richardson beat Glen McGrandle, Group Two:Preliminary Round:- Simon Meredith beat Paddy Thomas, Andy Bennett lost to Josh Pickett, Chris Dale beat Kevin Breeze, Kevin Bambrick lost to Loz Slater, Shaun Breeze lost to Paul Brown, Harvey Tebble beat Pommy Singh, Richard Hosey beat Reece Cook-Lucas, Scott Towers lost to Tony Richardson, Stephen Bunting beat Paul Dicken, Mathew Moore beat Mark Lloyd, Gaz Cullinan lost to Josh Richardson, John Simms beat Mathias Dietrich, Dave Pallett beat Trevor Collier, Gareth Walsh lost to Greg Parkes, Last 64:- Ian Jones lost to Neil Steventon, Simon Meredith lost to Josh Pickett, Chris Dale beat Loz Slater, Paul Brown beat Harvey Tebble, Richard Hosey beat Tony Richardson, Stephen Bunting beat Mathew Moore, Josh Richardson beat Greg Parkes, Last 32:- Neil Steventon 3 Josh Pickett 4, Chris Dale 4 Paul Brown 2, Richard Hosey lost to Stephen Bunting, Josh Richardson 0 Dave Pallett 4, Group Three:Preliminary Round:- Scott Baker beat Craig Airey, Carl Dennel lost to Shane Price, Martin Cadman lost to Ian Stanton, Ryan Palmer beat Jordan Ward, Adrian Johnson lost to Steve Hickman, Joshua Micklewright lost to Adam Smith-Neale, Rob Trumper lost to Dan Nicholls, Ryan Locker lost to Les Marson, Les Evans lost to Dave Honey, Adam Edgar beat Stuart Quarry, Wayne Willis beat Alex Howells, Jess Archer lost to Connor Pickett, Ian McFarlane beat Trevor Smith, Last 64:- Trevor Brennan lost to John Mansell, Ste Homer lost to Scott Baker, Shane Price lost to Ian Stanton, Ryan Palmer beat Steve Hickman, Adam Smith-Neale beat Dan Nicholls, Les Marson lost to Dave Honey, Adam Edgar beat Wayne Willis, Connor Pickett lost to Ian McFarlane, Last 32:- John Mansell 1 Scott Baker 4, Ian Stanton 1 Ryan Palmer 4, Adam Smith-Neale 4 Dave Honey 1, Adam Edgar 2 Ian McFarlane 4, Group Four:Preliminary Round:- Matt Dennant beat Robert Harris, Ryan O’Connor lost to Ben Hollywood, Mark Hylton beat Matt Frost, Wayne Jones 3 Dave Evans 4, Malcolm Cope lost to Martin Price, John Brindley beat Lance Hackett, Paul Hogan beat Rob Smith, John Mycock 1 Mark Craddock 4, Liam Dawkins lost to Paul Clift, Ashley Passmore beat Alan Carter, Nathan Cope lost to Carl Penzer, Lol Frazer lost to Owen Maiden, Sean Johnson beat Reece Colley, Anthony Dent lost Tom Stockton, Last 64:- Jim Williams beat Gary Dennant, Matt Dennant 4 Ben Hollywood 0, Mark Hylton lost to Dave Evans, Martin Price 2 John Brindley 4, Paul Hogan beat Mark Craddock, Paul Clift lost to Ashley Passmore, Carl Penzer lost to Owen Maiden, Sean Johnson 4 Tom Stockton 1, Last 32:- Jim Williams 4 Matt Dennant 2, Dave Evans 4 John Brindley 0, Paul Hogan 1 Ashley Passmore 4, Owen Maiden 1 Sean Johnson 4, Last Sixteen:- Ben Davies 4 Jonathan Platt 2, Luke Woodhouse 2 James Richardson 4, Josh Pickett 3 Chris Dale 4, Stephen Bunting 4 Dave Pallett 2, Scott Baker 4 Ryan Palmer 1, Adam Smith-Neale 4 Ian McFarlane 0, Jim Williams 4 Dave Evans 1, Ashley Passmore 4 Sean Johnson 0, Quarter Finals:- Ben Davies 3 James Richardson 5, Chris Dale 3 Stephen Bunting 5, Scott Baker 4 Adam Smith-Neale 5, Jim Williams 5 Ashley Passmore 3, Semi-Finals:- James Richardson 3 Stephen Bunting 6, Adam Smith-Neale 5 Jim Williams 6, Final:- Stephen Bunting 7 Jim Williams 4.
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