Well, another County game was soon upon us this one saw us travel away to Bicester to face Oxfordshire. Dorset seems to be getting better every match after their first game against Sussex (losing 16-20) there have been wins against Gwent 20-16 and West Midlands 21-15 so are confidence was high.
A lot of us travelled down Friday night making a long weekend of it. No coach from the hotel Saturday as the venue was only 1.5 miles away some of us were going to walk it until we felt the wind & rain, so Taxi’s it was then.
The venue was good an Ex Service Men’s @ Family’s Social Club, with practice boards in the same room so you could listen and watch the games and extra practice boards in the other bar. SO HOW DID WE GET ON.
Up first for our lady’s Lin Bellingham (16.53) v Nicola Curzon (17.96) first two legs went with throw then Nicola took the next two legs to take the 3-1 win and was Oxfordshire’s Lady of the Match. Julie Boggust (16.17) v Sonia McBlain (16.53)up next, what a close match this was as you can tell by the averages, Julie taking her match to a deciding leg but not to be for Julie and Oxfordshire’s lady’s go 2-0 up. Sally Old our lady’s captain up next playing consistently and not messing at the doubles takes a 3-0 win Sally’s been playing consistently well lately (long may it last) and give Dorset something to cheer about.
Roz Annetts up next for Dorset undefeated this season so far, Roz playing well rushes into a 2-0 lead but suddenly can’t find three twenty’s let alone the treble and is well behind in the 3rd leg, but Oxfordshire’s Trina Blackman misses SO MANY doubles and Roz gets a go at 80 hitting the lipstick but missing two at tens, leg to Oxfordshire. Roz scores well in the 4th leg but finds that winning double elusive eventually poking 4 to take a 3-1 win and level the match at 2-2. Lorraine Woodrow (17.04) v Babs Manning (16.04) up next both slow to get going then Babs pokes 91 to break Lorraine’s throw. Lorraine well in charge in the 2nd and she leaves tops Babs is back on 220 but Lilly can’t find a double and Babs pinches the leg ( SCORES FOR SHOW DOUBLES FOR DOUGH springs to mind) Lilly well in front again in the 3rd and she hits the double to pull a leg back. Babs hits back to back tons and gets first go at a shot out 66 Lorraine back on 128 but numerous missed double and Lilly levels at 2-2 to force a deciding leg Lilly with throw. Deciding leg could of gone either way then Lilly hits 83 to leave tops and goes onto take the win and was Dorset’s Lady of the Match coming from 0-2 down.
Up last Donna Mabbatt (15.49) in a close game against Irene Richardson(15.18) there a game going into a deciding leg, and having the throw made the difference Donna missing a dart at tops Oxfordshire taking the win and it’s all evens after the Lady’s 3-3.
Bring on the Men’s B teams.
Now are Men’s B have yet to draw let alone win so apprehensive is the word I’d use waiting for the matches to begin. Up first for Dorset Terry Gowans whose slow to find his range falling 0-2 behind, then takes the next three to go 3-2 in front then can’t find a treble and Oxfordshire force a deciding leg. Having the throw made the difference and Terry (still one of the luckiest players in Dorset) takes the win. Damian Mudge first two legs went with throw but he loses 2-4. Rob Channing up next Rob new to County Darts this season and has come close to winning playing Richard Meadows, Richard hitting a 180 as he goes onto a 2-0 lead, Richard hits another 180 in the 3rd leg but Rob pokes 76 to pull a leg back and then he levels at 2-2. Rob loses the next then Richard hits a 127 to leave tops and it looks all over for Rob, but missed doubles from Oxfordshire and Rob levels to force a deciding leg. Rob hits scores of 135 and a 140 to leave 81 and he goes onto take the 4-3 win about time he had a little luck. Nigel Lamb (25.43) v Dan Kirton (25.31) took Nigel a while to find his range losing the first two legs. Nigel hits Dorset’s first 180 of the day in the 3rd leg and starts finding red pen scores much more consistently and he takes the next three legs to go 3-2 up. Nigel wires tops for a 108 shot out Dan hits a ton to leave 30. Nigel throws his last dart in the floor he doesn’t need it as he takes a 4-2 win and was Dorset’s Man of the Match. Ryan Mabey up next falls 0-3 behind missing a few doubles, wins the next leg but not to be this time as he loses 1-4. Richard Gomm (25.10) rushes into a 2-0 lead playing well. Oxfordshire take the next leg but it’s the Richard Gomm of old up on stage not missing much at all and he’s a deserved 4-1 winner.
Wow! Dorset’s Men’s B 4-2 UP yes up and breath.
Nick Turner is up next. Difficult for me as I’m half watching Scott Mitchell on my phone playing Jonny Clayton in the player’s championship some of Dorset behind me ALSO watching both matches (Scott going 0-2 down when he should be 2-0 up) and half Nick Turner whose chasing back to back wins, Nick winning convincingly 4-2 (Scott Mitchell, on the other hand, losing 0-6 too many missed doubles most UN SCOTT LIKE)
Robby Morris next up, Robby falls 0-3 behind and as we know Robby never gives up and amazingly pulls back to level at 3-3 and goes onto take the win, meaning our Men’s B have at least got a draw as now 6-2 up. Mark Porter (Potty) up next falls 1-3 behind but battles back to get a deserved deciding leg Potty so many scores of 60 and Oxfordshire’s Shane Turner pokes 91 to take the win. Next up the game of the weekend so far for me Liam Blakeley (Dorset 27.27) v Ade Larner (Oxfordshire 26.60) Liam’s debut for Dorset a youngster with no fear bangs in a 15 dart first leg breaking Ade’s throw and takes the next also.
Next two go with throw putting Liam 3-1 up. Ade hits a 180 to leave 20 returns hits it. Another 180 from Ade then Liam hits 94 to leave tops, Ade poking 106 to level at 3-3. Deciding leg and you won’t see much better after 12 darts ( Ade with throw) Ade on 116 Liam on 90, Ade pokes the 116 to take the win and was Oxfordshire’s Man of the Match Liam’s 27.27 average the highest of the weekend WHAT A FIND for DORSET if he continues to play at this standard. Richard Perry next up follow that.
Richard takes his game to a deciding leg against the throw and Oxfordshire’s Andrew Charlett pokes a 108 to take the win. Dorset’s Men’s B have now lost the last three games and with just John Clark to play for the win. John Clark team manager and most experienced player in Dorset having played 360 games for Dorset loses the first leg but then takes the next four to take the 4-1 win (BETTER TO BE LUCKY THAN GOOD) giving our Men’s B there first result of this season.
So going into Sunday with the scores standing at Oxfordshire 8 Dorset 10.
Up first Katie Mitchell v Nicola Curzon ( who played yesterday and was Oxfordshire’s Lady of the Match) Katie takes the first two legs then Nicola pokes 80 to pull a leg back, great scoring 4th leg from Katie but numerous missed doubles ending up at the Madhouse that is double one and she takes a 3-1 win. Cathy Campbell next up goes into a 2-0 lead but can’t find the winning double in the 3rd leg, but no problems taking a 3-1 win. Julie Frampton next up took her 9 darts before she hits her first red pen score a 140 then goes onto hit a 137 to leave 58 and takes the first leg. Julie’s back on 218 as Oxfordshire’s Karen Williams takes the 2nd. Julie takes next two legs for the 3-1 win. What a start for our Lady’s A 3-0 up.
Sam Kirton (21.17) next up v Emily Baldwin. Nice to see Sam playing well again taking the first leg then hitting 140 100 140 and wins the 2nd. Sam misses a few winning doubles ( always the hardest to hit) but is far enough in front and takes the 3-0 win. 21.17 average too. Well played Sam. Suzy Trickett up next wasn’t until the tail end of the first leg before she hits a ton both have a go at a double leg to Oxfordshire’s Sue Burns. Suzy didn’t look back from there plenty of red pen scores and no messing at a double and she runs out a 3-1 winner and was Dorset’s Lady of the Match her 21.35 the highest Lady’s average of the weekend. Dorset 5-0 up just Trina Perry to play, Trina experienced is an understatement having played 247 games for Dorset took it all in her stride busting 78 in the first leg losing it but going onto win convincingly 3-1 giving our Lady’s a clean sweep 6-0 dream score giving Dorset a great chance of a win.
Dale Masterman (25.45) v Jon Jukes (26.13) and what a cracker to get us underway. Even first leg scoring-wise going with a throw to Dale. Jon starts 2nd leg ton 135 180 and is on 86 after 9 darts and takes the leg. After 15 darts in the 3rd Dale sat on tops but can’t find the double Jon poking 100 to put Dale 1-2 down. Jon hits another 180 and is on 60 after 15 darts this time he can’t find the double and it’s back level at 2-2. Deciding leg wrote all over it and sure enough, it is Dale with throw, and that was the difference after 12 darts Dale on tops Jon on 58 Dale taking the 4-3 win. Carl Beattie (25.52) v Sean Holley (26.79) first three legs went with throw, putting Carl 1-2 down and he loses 1-4 and is disappointed with his form just didn’t go THIS TIME giving Oxfordshire their first win of the weekend. Scott Mitchell (27.83) v Lennon Cradock.
The only plus of Scotty losing to Johnny Clayton means he’s here today to play for his BELOVED Dorset. Lennon not happy with the Ochie not being straight with the board so that took 5 minutes to sort. At last, Game on, took Scott a few darts to find his range and he goes 2-0 up. 16 dart 3rd leg for Scott and after 12 darts in the 4th Scott on 96 and he takes the 4-0 win, he said to me later ” see I can hit doubles”.
Tommy Morris (26.72) v Brandon Richardson(23.52) Tommy’s such a fast player and has picked up the nickname TOMMY GUN and what an exciting player he is to watch rushing into a 2-0 lead. Tommy wires double eight for a 136 shot out taking the 3rd. After 15 darts Tommy sat on tops , one dart for a 4-0 victory blink and you would of missed it. That gives Dorset that magical number 19 the win assured now the question is by how many. Danny Pearce (26.88) up next rushes into a 3-0 lead scoring well and not messing at the double. Danny’s well in control in the 4th leg hitting a 140 to leave 20 but that winning double can be and was so hard to hit Oxfordshire pinch the leg. Danny goes onto take a 4-1 win. Mark Grimes (25.46) v Mark Burns (25.85) in very tight game, legs could have gone either way Oxfordshire’s Mark Burns goes 3-1 up but our Mark Grimes levels to 3-3 for a deserved deciding leg. Having the throw made the difference Oxfordshire taking the win.
So after 6 games Oxfordshire 2 Dorset 4
Kevin Smith up next starts well hitting ton 180 125 but not to be as he loses 0-4. Daniel Perry (25.80) v Stephen Wright (26.59) a close game as the averages suggest but the scoreline doesn’t reflect the game our Daniel losing 1-4 and that’s 3 wins in a row for Oxfordshire. Ricky King (27.29) v Lee Russell (26.19) what an exciting high scoring match this was.
Ricky King’s first season at County darts and so far undefeated. Each leg so close all going with throw forcing a deciding leg Ricky with the darts (will he keep his bottle and remain undefeated?) Ricky starts well hitting a 140 and the cheers from the Dorset massive are loud, and even louder as he pokes a 150 shot out to take the 4-3 win.
Robbie Martin (25.24) v Simon King (26.28) Robbie hits a 180 on his way to breaking Simon’s throw. Both had chances in the 2nd Simon breaking straight back, then taking the 3rd with the darts, Robbie levels at 2-2. Robbie misses a few doubles much to his annoyance and loses 2-4. Richard Wright (24.55) v Andrew Quinn (23.69) what a close exciting match this was, Andrew Oxfordshire going into a 2-0 lead. Rich starts 3rd leg with a 180 followed by a 140 and I’m thinking JUST MAYBEE he will kick on from here. Andrew back on 260 as Richard with a fist out pulls a leg back and then another fist pump as he levels at 2-2. Both miss doubles in the 5th Richard pinching it. Richard gets one dart at tops as Andrew then levels at 3-3. Richard with the darts and exhibition stuff ( no he got lucky) three darts to win on 40 he goes double one off the board double 19 again BETTER TO BE LUCKY THAN GOOD, no seriously pressure dart good win and he takes all the applause and cheering from the Dorset Massive.
Steven Early (24.23) v Tom Baughan ( 29.03). Now Steve left his darts in the taxi Saturday and had been practicing with other darts for today, 10 minutes before his game his darts were delivered to the venue no one to blame but himself not chasing the taxi company up quick enough. That’s not to take anything away from Oxfordshire’s Tom Baughan who played really well taking the highest average of the weekend off Scott Mitchell he was also Oxfordshire’s Man of the Match.
Men’s game-ending 6-6.
Overall result: Oxfordshire 14 Dorset 22 our best result so far.
Well, what a surprise to see all the snow settled outside and about 4 inches deep all over my car (ITS BEGINNING TO LOOK ALOT LIKE CHRISTMAS) did make the drive home easier knowing we had won 22-14 snowed until Rownams services then nothing in are area roads even dry but I digress.
Women YET AGAIN set the win up for us, what a team effort from the Lady’s A nice to see Sam Kirton banging in 20+ averages again. Debut for Liam Blakeley what a find for Dorset (nice to see Perry Yarrow living every dart he throw) hitting the highest average on Saturday his opponent having to poke a 106 & 116 to beat him you did well mate.
Rob Channing getting a win you’ve come close hopefully this is the start of a long winning run. Richard Gomm back winning like he used to. Dale Ricky and Richard Wright winning deciding legs. Next game home to Kent don’t forget your Santa Hats well it is Christmas.
Proud to do my little bit for such a great side. Stay safe see you all December 11th 12th.
Oxfordshire’s lady’s B 3 Dorset 3
Oxfordshire’s Men’s B. 5 Dorset 7
Oxfordshire’s lady’s A 0 Dorset 6
Oxfordshire’s Men’s A 6 Dorset 6
Oxfordshire 14 Dorset 22
Green Army marching on and up the table.
Words: Martin Maidment
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