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Article: Alan Towe's The Line

Alan Towe's The Line

What an end there was to the Shirley and District Monday Night League as the top two teams Highwood and Dunky’s Boys went into their final fixtures level on 54 points and the title dependent on the outcome of their two games. Both teams were playing against opponents from the bottom half of the table, Dunky’s Boys recording a convincing 8-1 win against Sharmans Cross but it was not enough as Highwood handed out a 9-0 whitewash to their visitors Shirley Golf Club to put them on the same 56 points as Dunky’s but with a six legs better average. Third in the table Red Lion ended their campaign with a 7-2 win over Cider House to give them a total of 52 points. The Shadow League title went to Saracens Misfits whose 7-2 win in their last game over Shirley Spartac took their points tally to 30. With the league title all done and dusted the league staged a doubles knockout which attracted an impressive 21 pairs and paid out a total of £104 in prize money. The final brought together Andy Thomas and Phil Thomas who squared up to Andy Hutchings and Vicky Traves with the 3-0 result and top prize of £60 going to Andy and Phil Thomas, Andy and Vicky received £24 as runners up. In the semi-finals the eventual winners defeated Mick Bown and Steve Sidwell while Hutchings and Traves took out Tom Bent and Mark Henderson. Phil Thomas collected a further £20 as he had the highest break of 160 and the highest finish of 106 each of them earning him an extra £10.
The various finals for the Sedgley and Gornal Tuesday Night League were played off in one finals night the first of which was the Team Knockout, the last two teams to reach the final were the league’s top two teams with champions Parkes Hall squaring up to runners up Old Bulls Head. The advantage swung from one team to the other before Old Bulls Head ran out the 6-3 winners. The first of the singles semi-finals matched Pete Whittaker (Five Ways) against Danny Fear (Gornal Labour Club) with Danny winning in two straight legs. The second semi also finished 2-0 with Tom Bissell (Old Bulls Head) beating Lee Walker (Gornal Labour Club). The final was extended to the best of five legs in which Tom Bissell won 3-1 against Danny Fear after Fear had suffered on finishing doubles whereby he could have won more legs and possibly the game. The doubles semi-finals saw the Gornal Labour Club pairing of Geoff Lewis and Rob Walker lose 2-0 to Tom Bissell and Carl Sparrow (Old Bulls Head). The second semi went to the wire with the Parkes Hall pairing of Ricki Riaz and Geoff Goodyear coming out the 2-1 winners at the expense of Britannia's Matt Price and Anthony Harris. As in the Team Knockout final the Doubles final was again contested by the league’s top two teams with Tom Bissell and Carl Sparrow winning 3-0 against Ricki Riaz and Geoff Goodyear to give Old Bulls Head their third title of the evening and Tom Bissell a fabulous Singles and Doubles title.
The tenth season of the Shirley Premier League finished with Paul Higgins taking the title with 69 points from his 25 games, runner up Phil Thomas finished just two points behind Higgins and with 16 wins in his 25 games he actually won one more game than the champion. The reason for Higgins taking the title was that the points for the league are based on the number of legs won not the actual wins and Higgins had 69 to the 67 of Thomas. Presentation night not only saw Higgins crowned as champion but the league also staged a doubles knockout with partners being randomly selected. The winners of the event were Mark Gwalchmai and Ken Hopton who in the final won 3-2 against league champion Paul Higgins and runner up Phil Thomas. In the last four games Gwalchmai and Hopton won 3-1 against Andy Thomas and Chris Thomas snr while losing out 3-0 to Higgins and Thomas were Jordan Ottley and Mark Henderson. The following week the league played another doubles knockout as a warm up before getting the new season underway and the final brought together Andy Thomas and Phil Thomas who squared up to Andy Hutchings and Vicky Traves with the 3-0 result and top prize of £60 going to Andy and Phil Thomas, Andy and Vicky received £24 as runners up. In the semi-finals the eventual winners defeated Mick Bown and Steve Sidwell while Hutchings and Traves took out Tom Bent and Mark Henderson. Phil Thomas collected a further £20 as he had the highest break of 160 and the highest finish of 106 each of them earning him an extra £10.
Week 25 fixtures for the Pip Club League saw ‘The Office’ player Steve ‘Weedie’ Liddle celebrate his 49th birthday unfortunately Steve will remember it for all the wrong reasons as that was all he was able to celebrate as he turned out to be his team’s sole loser as they won 8-1 against Pip Club leaving them two points behind the Combined League leaders Queens Head who won 6-3 at Red Lion. Beers all round Steve?
The Yeltz Bar Tuesday Night 501 Singles League staged a Memorial Knockout for Brian Evetts which produced a very high standard of play throughout with Jason Lowe the winner after beating Trevor Brennan 4-0 in the final. In the semi-finals Lowe beat Jamie Rollinson 3-0 and Brennan won 3-1 against Reece Colley. The evening raised a terrific amount of £250 which will go to a designated charity.
The Royal, Albrigton laid on another of their knockouts with the top prize of £110 going to Ilkeston’s Matt Padgett. Padgett had a very close 5-4 win over Martin Price (Darlaston) in the semi-finals while his final opponent Sam Guest (Wednesfueld) beat Chris Hill (Willenhall) 5-3. The final turned out to be a convincing 6-1 win for Padgett with Guest picking up £50 as runner up. Both losing semi-finalists Martin Price and Chris Hill received £20.
The Camp Hill League staged their presentation night and collecting the silverware for not only the league title but also the League Cup were Journeys End Lions. Journeys End won the league title with 30 points losing just one of their sixteen fixtures to give them an advantage of four points over runners up Holy Souls. [caption id="attachment_34422" align="alignnone" width="4032"]Red Dragon Darts, Alan Towe, Camp Hill League Camp Hill League and Cup Winners Journey End Lions Rear Mark Standley (league secretary), Simon Edwards, Tom Humphries, Front Richard Hogan, Ray Cridge[/caption]
The Woodside Inn staged another of their third Sunday in the month Brierley Hill Opens and winning the latest was Rob Powers. Powers took out Robert Pierce with a 4-1 scoreline in the semis and joining him in the final after winning 4-2 against Jordan Ward in his last four game was Josh Pickett. The final saw Powers power through and take the top prize with a 5-2 result over Pickett
Sadly and with regret I announce the passing away of Tom Bannister a man who played darts for various teams and numerous leagues around the Black Country for many, many years. Tom was a fine darts player and a true gentleman he will be sadly missed by all of his friends and darts colleagues. Condolences go to his wife and family.
At the time of going to print the new Birmingham based C’s Club Double Top Wednesday Night League is up to week eight and sees Neil Parsonage take over pole position form Luis Barberan. Barberan had held the number one spot for the majority of the season but has always had Parsonage breathing down his neck as the points difference were minimal and he had games in hand on him. With all of the outstanding fixtures played and both players having completed sixteen games Parsonage with 44 points has a slender two points advantage on Barberan but there is still many games left to play and the roles could well reverse and swap over a few times before the end of the season. Third in the table Jake Webster is only a further two points adrift on 40 points however he has played 18 games while fourth placed Chris Millward is still well in contention as he after playing 15 games has games in hand on the thee players above him and is on 36 points.
Winmau Darts Centre at Wolverhampton Indoor Community Sports Stadium Above Average have lived up to their name in the Winmau Centre Monday Night League as they have completed their eighteen fixtures losing just one and taking the title with 656 points, a lead of 22 over runners up Misfits who lost three of their fixtures. The Untouchables won the title way back in the 2015 season and in the last three out of four seasons have been runners up, however this season they finished third with 621 points some 35 short of the champions. A thought for Three Men And A Lady who completed all eighteen fixtures without a single win or draw to end the campaign with 127 points.
At the time of going to print the current situation in the Winmau Centre Thursday Night Champions League is that Adam Quinton leads the way on 127 points from his 26 games. Second in the table Jordan Ward is twelve points off the top with two games in hand and third placed Chris Manoila, who like Quinton has also played 26 games is on 109 points. Sam Aitkens makes up the top four with 106 points from a total of 25 fixtures and is in a position to overtake third in the table Manoila should he get better than a 4-3 or better result in his game in hand. Well what can you say about fifth placed player Mick Baker who has won the league title plus the lucrative benefits that go with it supplied by Winmau of twelve months sponsorship for the last four seasons. Baker, despite his lowly position and 96 points has only played an unbeaten seventeen games, he has a huge nine in hand on leader Quinton nine games that could net him a possible 63 points which would take his tally to 159 and give him a massive 32 points lead over the rest of the field. Could this be a fifth consecutive title for Baker? Only time will tell but watch this space and see how he progresses.
By Alan Towe Website:

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