Away v Cleveland - Saturday 15th / Sunday 16th April 2023
Week ending Saturday 15th - Sunday 16th April saw Dorset make the 300+ mile trip to Cleveland to play the next round of County Darts. Me personally traveled the 318 miles to the hotel Friday the trip with one 30 minute break took 8 hours that’s how much I love my County Darts and that’s just my horror story of the trip up north most were a lot worse. The wind and rain not helping and the sat nav kept saying “Traffic Jam Ahead and she wasn’t joking. Anyway to the point most of Dorset traveled up Friday for this top of the table clash. Dorset top Cleveland a very close 2nd. Dorset had managed a draw against Humberside who were in 2nd position last game Dale Masterman on last to get the draw and keep Dorset undefeated this season that was a tough game and now straight into another never easy when you're top of the table, Cleveland beating Gwent 24-15 (with bonus points) moved them into 2nd place so another tough one. Cleveland play out of Thornaby Sports and Leisure Club Stockton on Tees, a very spacious club with plenty of practice boards in the venue so players can practice and follow the games as they are being played. Anyway how did Dorset do?
Up first for Dorset Lisa Warren (14.60) now Lisa hasn’t played County darts for quite some time but steps in to help us out, several Lady’s unable to make this weekend. Now Lisa scored well but couldn’t buy a double losing 0-3. Julie Boggust up next (14.74) ran out an easy winner finding her doubles and winning 3-0 and was Dorset's Lady of the Match. Donna Mabbatt on next just not her day today losing 0-3.
Lin Bellingham (12.88) V Mia Simmons (12.54) up next in an evenly scoring match Lin finding the doubles in her 3-1 win to put Dorset level at 2-2. Jamie Walker next scoring so well on the practice boards but couldn’t find the same form on stage losing 1-3. That left Katie Mitchell (16.30) up last v Mel Holland (16.22) the best game for the ladies on Saturday both playing well the match going into a deserved DECIDING leg the throw making the difference although Mel saved her best leg for last Katie losing 2-3 despite hitting the highest ladies average this weekend, Mel Holland was Cleveland’s Lady of the Match giving Cleveland ladies a 4-2 win. Not the start we hoped for, need the Mens B to pull it back.
Up first Rob Channing (27.87) V Peter Frewer (25.21) both players scoring and finishing well first 6 legs all close all going with throw both players playing off each other neither giving anything away no surprise it went to a DECIDING leg Rob with throw who saved his best leg for last going 120 and three tons and after 12 darts Robs on 81 Peter way back on 253 Rob takes the 4-3 win and was Dorset's Man of the Match, great standard to get us underway. Matt Read (26.72) V Ray Hutchinson (25.33) what a cracking match this was Matt hitting 2x180s on his way to a 4-0 win no messing at the doubles it’s great when they go in. Declan Harris (21.59) up next V Gareth Hayes (23.79) a match of missed doubles from both players destroying the averages Declan losing 2-4.
Kevin Smith (21.24) doing enough to beat Derek Grazier 4-2. Next up Potty Mark Porter (24.28) Men's captain V David Coverdale (23.99) Potty scoring and finishing well winning convincingly 4-1. Richard Gomm (23.93) V Liam Sherlock (23.49) what a close cracking game this was. First 4 legs all going with throw then Richard bangs in a 13 darter to break and go 3-2 up. Richard misses 6 darts at 32 Liam forces a decider breaking straight back. Missed doubles from Liam and Richard Gomm takes the 4-3 win. So halfway through the Mens B Dorset are 5-1 up.
Owen Emmett Bowden (27.44) V Chris Bradley (25.43) now Owen comes from a darting family I don’t think there’s a “Bowden” that doesn’t play darts this being Owen’s second game for Dorset he was unlucky not to win the first. All legs going close all going with the darts so a decider Owen with throw, keeps his nerve banging in a 14 dart leg to win 4-3. James Green (24.10) up next a convincing 4-2 win scoring well. Liam Blakeley (26.54) now there’s a youngster to look out for in the future he’s got a real darting head on those young shoulders and has been playing well for some time now, today he banged in some great scores and never looked like losing to Jake Harland 23.92) taking a 4-1 win. What an AMAZING start for Dorset’s Men.
George Grant (23.78) did more than enough coming out a 4-1 winner. Richard Perry (21.57) V Jorden Mathews (26.72) now it’s a standing joke that Richard always seems to draw the Man of the Match and yet again he did today. Jorden Matthews not missing a lot. Richard losing 0-4 and Jorden Matthews was indeed Cleveland’s Man of the Match. That left Jamie Elm (20.21) up last. Jamie a great player just not finding it today losing 1-4. So the Mens B get an amazing 9-3 win and we go into Sunday with the scores at Cleveland 7 Dorset 11. Great start can the A team increase the lead?
Sunday Ladies A.
Up first Peri Yarrow (17.79) V Frances Elwick (17.65) now Peri hasn’t played County darts for a while but to help us out agreed to play today. Peri takes her match to a deciding leg with throw. Both have chances at hitting the winning double and the YES from Peri tells me the double is in and she takes a 3-2 win. Beverley Scarff (17.70) V Sam Dixon (18.27) Bev rushes into a 2-0 lead and has two darts at 8 for the win not to be and Sam scoring very well levels to get a decider, with throw and Bev loses 2-3. Suzy Trickett (19.52) up next always in control and comes out a 3-0 winner putting Dorset 2-1 up.
Wendy Lamb (14.79) V Tonilee Bowsted (18.11) up next Wendy snatches her darts out of the board having busted 136 in the first leg and goes onto lose 0-3. Sam Kirton (23.12) V Carla Boyes (20.67) the best ladies game on Sunday both scored well Sam no messing at the doubles taking a 3-0 win and was Dorset's Lady of the Match hitting the highest ladies average of the weekend. That left ladies captain Sally Old (14.73) up in the A for the first time this season we hoped for the win Sally on a 6 match winning spree. Sally playing Claire Stamper (18.33) not to be Claire out scoring Sally and hitting her doubles. Sally losing 0-3 and Claire was Cleveland’s Lady of the Match. The result a draw at 3-3.
Up first Jordan Sharpe who just wasn’t on it today losing 0-4 to Kyle Stanwick (24.74). Freddy Richard Wright (25.62) up next V Paul Allen (24.96) Paul running 20th in the County averages so we knew Freddy had a game on and he rose to the occasion winning 4-2. Steven Earley (22.08) up next now Steven's been winning and winning well of late, today he did enough to win 4-2.
Dan Perry (27.83) V Rob Grundy (25.74) now Dans another youngster to look out for when he’s playing well he’s great to watch. Today was one of those days running out a 4-0 winner, and was Dorset's Man of thr Match so pleased for him. Ricky King (27.45) V Jamie Gardner (26.78) now Ricky King has been banging in some great averages and he’s well up there with the likes of Tommy Morris and Scott Mitchell he even beat Paul Hogan 4-2. Today he wins 4-0 the result great but not reflecting the closeness of his match. Carl Beattie (22.94) v Mark Busuttil (23.83) now Carl desperately needs a win to break his bad streak he’s been 3-0 up only to lose 4-3 now that can destroy anyone’s confidence but he is a great dart player. Today first 6 legs all going with throw so a decider against throw and we all thought “here we go again”. Carl starts 81 140 125 59 to leave 96 returns leaves 19 which he busts gets another go 17 double one to take the 4-3 win and break that losing streak now that’s “bottle” no one more relieved than Carl. “Whoop there it is” is the chant from the Dorset supporters as that the guaranteed win now 19-11 up.
Robbie Martin (28.77) v Mark Muckian (28.51) the game of the weekend for me. Close first leg Cleveland pinching it breaking Rob's throw. Both hit 180s in the 2nd leg, leg with throw to Cleveland. 3rd leg another 180 as Rob hits a 14 darter. A few missed doubles and Rob despite hitting the highest average of the weekend loses 2-4. A total of 5x180s in the match no surprise Mark Muckian was Cleveland’s man of the Match. Tommy Morris (25.50) V Brian Henderson (26.59). Today he wins 4-2 and is a bit disappointed with his average but a Wins a Win. Nigel Lamb (23.73) V John Watson (25.69) Nigel missing doubles should be 2-1 up but is 0-3 down and goes onto lose 0-4.
Scott Mitchell (22.64) v Geoffrey Burton (23.61) now all I can say Scott had “an off day” nothing seemed to go for him and he loses 1-4. I suspect (I know I would) Geoffrey Burton’s claim to fame beating the x world champion 4-1 he will live off that for a while. Dorsets heads didn’t go down as next up Dale Masterman (24.88) up next the hero of our last match playing Kevin Naunton (27.75). Dale rushes into a 3-0 lead but Cleveland’s Kevin Naunton seems to up his game and fights to get a 3-3 so a nervous deciding leg. Dale with the throw made the difference poking 68 last dart in hand to take a 4-3 win. Up last Ryan Gowans (25.53) v Barry Davies (24.33). Ryan’s game going to 2-2 then Ryan hits an 11 darter to go 3-2 up and goes onto take the 4-2 win. Great game great result for Dorset.
Well I billed this as a top of the table clash which it was and as a tough match but all of you Dorset players gave 100% we win as a team and STILL remain undefeated I’m proud to be part of this tremendous side as Tommy Morris said “we didn’t come ALL THIS WAY to lose” you’ve got to love him “bless”. Some shock results some great results but Green army marching on heads held high undefeated with just two matches to go I believe, let’s hope we can keep it going. We’ve pulled well clear at the top of the table, let’s not get complacent, let’s win this. Home game next time I for one can’t wait. Our Mens A and B teams just keep getting better. We always relied on the ladies giving us a start now we are more of a team. See you all soon. Loving the Dorset team spirit. Onwards and upwards.
Cleveland 14-22 Dorset
Women's B Lost 2-4 // Mens B Won 9-3
Women's A Drew 3-3 // Mens A Won 8-4
Match Report by Martin Maidment