Darts News: Alan Towe's The Line
On the local darts scene the Shirley Red Lion Premier League played a knockout comprising of four groups with two players going through to the finals from each group. In the last eight Mark Gwalchmai took out Lee Harris, Paul Higgins beat Steve Heeks, Chris Thomas lost to Sean Talbot and Mikey Harris defeated Mark Henderson. The semi-finals saw Paul Higgins edge out Mikey Harris while Mark Gwalchmai produced the performance of the night against Sean Talbot hitting a 171 score on the way to a 12 darts leg. Higgins won the first leg of the final only to see Gwalchmai with a maximum take the second. From a 78 outshot Gwalchmai had one dart at double twenty to clinch the title but after he missed Higgins stepped up to check out on double twelve for a very close 2-1 win. The league also staged three knockouts on their presentation night, the first being the ‘£50 Shoot Out’ for the league’s top four players, unfortunately due to ill health runner up Steve Sidwell was unable to attend so in stepped fifth placed Lee Harris. The semi-finals saw a high quality standard with league champion Tom Bent edging out Lee Harris whilst Mark Henderson started his semi-final with a 180 only to see Mark Gwalchmai hit back with finishes of 116 and 100 and then take the fifth leg and book his place in the final. The high quality darts continued in the final Mark Gwalchmai winning the first two legs Tom Bent replying by winning the next two. Gwalchmai looked all set to collect the £50 top prize until Bent produced a sensational 153 checkout. The ‘Win your £20 entry fee back’ play off between the league’s bottom four players was a hard fought affair too, in the semi-finals Nick Walker and Karl Wilson won 3-0 in turn against Tim Lowe and Noreen Harris. The final was a very close affair Nick Walker taking the honours with a 3-2 result. Thirteen players did battle in the Singles Knockout with the eight players taking part in the two previous knockouts excluded. The semi-finals both went to a deciding leg with Tony Daly beating Sean Talbot and Dave Heighway taking out Andy Thomas, the final result going to Tony Daly.
The Forest of Arden Winter League’s Doubles Knockout attracted an inspiring seventeen pairs and wrapping up the title with a final 2-1 win over Jason Jennings and Luis Barberan were John Sidwell and Bob Nixon. In the last four games Sidwell and Nixon won 2-1 against Jake Webster and Ricky Lawrence while Jennings and Barberan had a straight 2-0 win against Pete Yardley and Jimmy Norris. [caption id="attachment_26992" align="aligncenter" width="640"] Forest of Arden Winter League - Doubles Knockout Sue Kingdon (Organiser), John Sidwell and Bob Nixon (Winners), Trevor Edwards (Treasurer).[/caption]
In the Netherton Thursday Night League’s Andy Bastable Trophy Hill and Cakemore who finished the season bottom of the table pulled off a fantastic 5-3 win over league champions Dudley Ex Serviceman’s Club while the League Shadow Cup was won by Delph Bell who beat Townsend Club 5-4. Winding down the season the league staged various finals which saw Townsend Club reversed the previous week’s 5-4 defeat to Delph Bell in the final of the League Shadow Cup by beating the same opponents by the same margin in the Andy Bastable Shadow Cup final. The game went to the very last leg with Townsend taking their chance on the doubles to deny The Bell a second cup final win. The Captain’s Cup was won by Simon Purcell (Riddins Tavern) who clinched the title with a final 2-1 win over Colin Hickman from Dudley Ex Serviceman’s Club. Both semi- finals were won 2-0, Purcell beating Matt Hall (Delph Bell) and Hickman winning against John Green (Fairfield).
The Brierley Hill Monday Night League played the finals of their League Cup in which the semi-finals produced two shock results, both games finished with close 5-4 scorelines as league champions Dudley Ex Serviceman’s Club were taken out by Delph Bell who narrowly lost the league title to their opponents and in the other game Mount Pleasant who finished the season in fourth place lost to Roebuck who ended their campaign eleventh in the table. The final saw Delph Bell turn up the pressure and romp to an 8-1 victory. In the Singles Knockout taking the title with a final straight 3-0 win over H.Wakefield (Brickmakers Arms) was R.Powers representing Dudley Ex Serviceman’s Club. The last four games saw Powers beat L.Davies (Lamp Tavern) 2-0 while Wakefield was taken to a deciding leg by J.Glazzard (Roebuck).
Champions of the Hilltop Friendly Tuesday Night League Dewdrop completed their season with a 4-3 win at Island Inn which cost the losers the runners up spot as they dropped behind Wagon and Horses on average after Wagon won 6-1 away to wooden spoon winners Hayes Social. The final of their Doubles Knockout saw Graham Parker and M.Bowen beat reigning champions Tony Kennedy and John Wright to take the title. In the semi-finals L.Sherwood despite losing 2-1 registered a 170 maximum checkout in his winning leg.
A 5-4 home defeat for The Bell by Fairfield in the Rowley Monday Night League was immaterial as the hosts had already won the title with 56 points. Ex Serviceman’s ‘A’ took the runners up spot, their final game of the season seeing them bow out with a bang as they handed out a 9-0 whitewash to their hosts Loyal Lodge who take the wooden spoon with just two wins in their 30 games.
ECC ‘A’, champions of the Tettenhall Wednesday Night League rounded off their season with a 6-1 home win over Swan Compton to finish eight points ahead of runners up Whitmore Reans WMC who had a final 4-3 win against The Bull. Taking the wooden spoon was Dog and Partridge who finished with 14 points from their 33 games, three fewer than the team above them Jones Road.
The winners of the Cradley Tuesday Night League 5 A-Side Knockout were Shaun Hill, Bryan Pearsall, Carl Newton, Mark Rutter and Michael Roberts while the 3 A-Side title went to Jeff Batham, Alf Turley and Carl Penzer.
After just one week off the top of the division one doubles section of the Wolverhampton Tuesday Night League Riley’s ‘B’ with a 2-1 win over Wednesfield Conservative Club in the final fixture of the season replaced their ‘C’ team at the top of the table to take the title. The division two doubles title went to Wednesfield Legion. In the singles sections Riley’s ‘C’ won division one and the division two title went to Dog and Partridge.
Winmau Darts Centre A final 38-10 win over Keep It In The Family has seen Misfits win the Winmau Centre Monday Night League title by a clear 47 points as they amassed a total of 508 points from their fourteen games season. Runners up The Untouchables also ended their campaign with a 38-10 win against their opponents Make Mine A Double. At the other end of the table Unleashed Warrior were unable to register a single win as they finished the season with a 37-11 defeat at the hands of the Full Monty team.
West Midlands player Mick Baker has unbelievably won the Winmau Centre Thursday Night Champions League title, plus the lucrative twelve months sponsorship deal supplied by Winmau that goes with the title for the last three seasons and at the time of going to print and after catching up with some of his outstanding fixtures he has now replaced long term leader Tony Randell in pole position. Baker’s latest fixtures have seen him win 5-2 against Adam Quinton and 6-1 against Rob Montana to put him on 111 points from 19 games, Randell who has now dropped into second place has 104 points from 20 games and with third placed Jordan Ward having played 24 games and being 14 points adrift of Baker the title looks almost certain to go to one of the current top two players. However with some eight fixtures remaining for Randell and nine for Baker the title is still in the balance and the current situation could easily change.
By Alan Towe Website: www.alantowedarts.co.uk