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Helen & Paul Harvey, the county darts-playing couple from Nottinghamshire, landed a unique darting double at the recent Brydens Barbados Darts Festival.  Paul, a recent semi-finalist at a national tournament in Bridlington, took the Dewars Men’s Singles and wife Helen, also highly ranked in the UK, complemented his achievement by winning the Oh Henry Ladies Singles in emphatic style.
Both Paul and Helen looked to be the players to beat as in the early rounds they demonstrated their scoring potential.  They might have been trying to make up for their disappointment in the Pairs competition, held on the first night, when Helen and her partner, Paula Jacklin from Lincolnshire, went out in the first round to the eventual runners-up Anne-Marie James and Nannette Brookes from Trinidad.  Paul and his partner, Jamie Robson from Lincolnshire, fared better, making it to the quarter finals where they lost to fellow Brits Craig Ryves and Mike Noyce.

In the first of the finals, Helen Harvey scored consistently whilst her opponent from St Lucia, Melissa John, looked as though her game was undermined by the pressure of playing in a final. Although the St Lucian won the right to start the first leg of the final Harvey showed her class by taking out a 91 finish with three darts. Harvey then had the darts for the second game and she outscored her opponent virtually every time she visited the oche to leave herself with a double four for the title - achieved with her first dart!
This probably heaped more pressure on husband Paul in the final but he had already demonstrated in earlier rounds that he was in metronomic form.  In fact the British contingent this year gave the players from the Caribbean a rude awakening when it cam to tournament play.  Only experienced tournament players like Norman Madhoo from Guyana and Anthony Forde from Barbados could match the UK players for consistency and tactics.
The Dewars semi-final line-up consisted of all Englishmen with Greorge Harris from Essex defeating Madhoo in the quarters and Paul Stern from Hertfordshire defeating Anthony Forde.  In the semi-finals Wayne Dawson from Hertfordshire  defeated Harris and Harvey beat Stern.
In the final Dawson won the right to the darts in the first game and although Harvey had the chance to take the leg it was a three dart finish for Dawson that prevailed.

The second leg produced excellent darts from both players and Harvey was first to the chance of a finish on double 16 which he achieved with his first dart at the target.
In the decider Dawson, now with first use of the darts, opened with a 100 but was immediately matched by Harvey who then reeled off two more three figure scores to keep in touch. Dawson then created a chance to take the game with a "bull" finish but just missed. Harvey failed to capitalise and Dawson had the chance of doubles again but failed and Harvey clinched it with double 10 with his second dart to complement his wife’s achievements and add another $1,000 Bds prize money to the family’s coffers.
The Barbados Darts Festival was hosted by larger-than-life darts celebrity Wayne Mardle and he has agreed to host the tenth Festival in 2011.  This year’s event attracted over 100 visitors from the UK, USA, Canada, St Lucia, Trinidad, Guyana and the Cayman Islands to this most sought-after holiday destination and, as always, they had a great time because the Festival is about far more than winning tournaments.

Next year’s event takes place from October 31 to November 10 and packages to include flights, ten nights accommodation and all tournament fees and travel to venues start from c. £875.
Further details from Festival Director, Michael Heal: Tel: 0775 157 1936 

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