BDO Inter County Championships:Premier Division:Warwickshire v Glamorgan
Game number seven of a scheduled for Warwickshire County Darts Organisation in the Premier Division of the BDO Inter County Championships was always going to be close and also tough as the third placed county, despite having home advantage were taking on their nearest rivals fourth in the table Glamorgan who were just ten points behind them.
The ladies ‘B’ match saw Glamorgan get the opening win as their Nicola Biddick came from one down against Caroline Pike to win 3-1 in a game that could easily have gone either way but for finishing doubles. The visitors lead lasted only until the very next game as Wendy Adams handed her opponent Michelle Jones a straight 3-0 defeat and with Melanie Jones coming from 1-0 down to beat Sue Hall 3-1 the home side were 2-1 up.
A share of the spoils were guaranteed for Warwickshire as early as the fourth game as this season’s debutant Rosie O’Connor not only won 3-1 against Donna Thomas but in the process earned herself the team’s match award for her 18.53 average.
Jordenn Daniels reduced the arrears for Glamorgan in game five when she won 3-0 against Helen Rigg and with a 3-1 success for Joanne Pugh in the last game against Marian Conway the final score was all square at 3-3.
Glamorgan were first off the starting blocks in the men’s ‘B’ match as Michael Huntley and Ralph Barnett in turn won 4-3 and 4-2 against Mark Carter and Rob Comben. Mark Strong stopped the visitors charge when he won 4-1 against Daniel Thomas with a 27.99 average and then restoring parity with a similar 4-1 result was James Hykin who not only beat Dai Powell but also won his team’s match award for a superb 30.36 average in which he had winning legs of 22,14,15 and 14 darts.
Warwickshire took the lead for the first time in the fifth when Carl Green, after trailing 1-0,2-1 and 3-2 to Neil Parry went on to win 4-3 and extending the home team’s lead to 4-2 at the halfway mark was Matty Washbrooke who accounted for Keiron Carter with a 4-1 scoreline.
The second half began as did the first with Glamorgan winning the opening two games. Mark Challenger was pegged back to level terms twice by Ashley Hurrell but went on to win 4-2 and Richie Edwards after going 1-0 down to Simon Fairbrother won the tie 4-1 to put the running score level once again now at 4-4.
Wayne Mynard (Warwickshire) began his game with Clive Langford with a winning 15 darts leg including a 120 game shot and although he then had his lead cancelled out twice he went on to win 4-2 with a similar 15 darts leg to that he began with except for the fact that in his final leg he checked out on 101.
Karl Reynolds took the score along nicely to 6-4 when he beat Hywell Manuel 4-1, Karl sealing his win with a 102 finish in 18 darts.
The winning seventh game came in the penultimate encounter when Jack Wareing, in a game that saw him lead 1-0 and then go 2-1 down to Dan Thompson, fight back to win the next three legs for a 4-2 victory.
Gareth Braham looked as though he would add another stripe to Warwickshire’s tally when he went two up against Colin Powell but Powell bounced back to level the game at two each and although Braham then went 3-2 up it was Powell who got the 4-3 result to take the final score to 7-5 in Warwickshire’s favour.
As in the ladies ‘B’ and the men’s ‘B’ the ladies ‘A’ also lost the opening game as Alannah Waters-Evans won 3-0 against Donna Pinch, then doubling the away team’s lead was Chris Savvery who handed out a rare 3-2 defeat to Sue Gulliver after Sue had won the opening leg in 21 darts with a 114 outshot.
Tammy Montgomery was in top form at number three not only beating Rhian O’Sullivan 3-1 but beating her with three 19 darts legs to give her a tremendous 24.44 lady of the match average. With a similar 3-1 result Natalie Gilbert defeated Eve Watson to level the score at 2-2 before the hosts took the lead for the first time in the game when Nina Bolt handed her opponent Claire Crocombe a straight 3-0 defeat.
With the result now hinging on the final game between Angela Jones (Warwickshire) and Jan Robbins a win looked almost certainly on the cards as Angela Jones went 2-0 up. Unfortunately the win was not to be as Jan Robbins won the following three legs for a personal 3-2 win and at the same time level the match at 3-3.
With five wins and a draw, Warwickshire’s men’s ‘A’ team have been in top form all season but their game against Glamorgan didn’t see them have the best of starts as like their other three teams over the weekend they lost the opening game.
Dale Hughes put the visitors one up when he won 4-1 against Antony Allen, that lead was doubled when Sean Fisher beat Dave Honey 4-2 and with a 4-3 win for Jeff Bass over Kevin Dowling, Glamorgan had opened up a 3-0 advantage.
It took a straight 4-0 win from Tom Aldridge over Shaun Dibbs to stop the rot and with Nigel Heydon coming from one down to win 4-1 against Tim Jones the deficit had been reduced to 3-2.
Jamie Atkins won the opening leg against James Richards in 18 darts only to see the away player go on to win 4-1 with winning legs of 19,19,17 and 18 darts.
Glamorgan began the second half with a man of the match performance from David Rogers who despite being taken to a deciding leg by Steve Giddings won 4-3 in 16,19,13 and 18 darts to give him a 29.51 average.
Glamorgan’s man of the match was followed by Warwickshire’s man of the man who came in the form of Ian McFarlane. Unlike David Rogers Ian McFarlane wasn’t taken to a deciding leg in fact he won in just four legs as he chalked up winning legs of 15,17,15 and 17 darts for a fantastic 4-0 win and tremendous 31.31 average.
Keeping Warwickshire in the game at number nine was Steve Hine who added his 4-1 win over Lloyd Browning and with a 4-2 success for Noel Grant against Wayne Davies the score after ten games was five each.
The penultimate game of the men’s ‘A’ and indeed the weekend saw home player Dean Stewart win 4-1 against Graham Brooks to not only assure his team of at least a draw but more importantly his win was the one that gave Warwickshire their vital nineteenth winning game of the weekend to ensure an overall victory.
The weekend’s fixture closed with a 4-0 win for Dai Caller over Prakash Jiwa to see both teams share the 6-6 result but give Warwickshire an overall 19-17 win.
With just two fixtures remaining Warwickshire hold on to third place in the table just six points short of second placed Lancashire but now fifteen points ahead over fourth in the division, their latest opponents Glamorgan.
Full Results:Premier Division:Warwickshire v Glamorgan (19-17):Warwickshire names first):Men’s ‘A’:- Antony Allen 1 Dale Hughes 4, Dave Honey 2 Sean Fisher 4, Kevin Dowling 3 Jeff Bass 4, Tom Aldridge 4 Shaun Dibbs 0, Nigel Heydon 4 Tim Jones 1, Jamie Atkins 1 James Richards 4, Steve Giddings 3 David Rogers 4, Ian McFarlane 4 Cavan Phillips 0, Steve Hine 4 Lloyd Browning 1, Noel Grant 4 Wayne Davies 2, Dean Stewart 4 Graham Brooks 1, Prakash Jiwa 0 Dai Caller 4, Men’s ‘B’:- Mark Carter 3 Michael Huntley 4, Rob Comben 2 Ralph Barnett 4, Mark Strong 4 Daniel Thomas 1, James Hykin 4 Dai Powell 1, Carl Green 4 Neil Parry 3, Matty Washbrooke 4 Keiron Carter 1, Ashley Hurrell 2 Mark Challenger 4, Simon Fairbrother 1 Richie Edwards 4, Wayne Mynard 4 Clive Langford 2, Karl Reynolds 4 Hywell Mauel 1, Jack Wareing 4 Dan Thompson 2, Gareth Braham 3 Colin Powell 4, Women’s ‘A’:- Donna Pinch 0 Alannah Waters-Evans 3, Sue Gulliver 2 Chris Savvery 3, Tammy Montgomery 3 Rhian O’Sullivan 1, Natalie Gilbert 3 Eve Watson 1, Nina Bolt 3 Claire Crocombe 0, Angela Jones 2 Jan Robbins 3, Women’s ‘B’:- Caroline Pike 1 Nicola Biddick 3, Wendy Adams 3 Michelle Jones 0, Melanie Jones 3 Sue HYall 1, Rosie O’Connor 3 Donna Thomas 1, Helen Rigg 0 Jordenn Daniels 3, Marian Conway 1 Joanne Pugh 3.
By Alan Towe