A warm welcome to everyone involved in the Grand Finals as the players lined up for a darts bonanza and the main event after a culmination of 26 other Competitions played throughout the year to decide the Rankings Tables and the Final line up’s. Townville Club, Castleford played host this year, an ideal choice with the lay out of the playing room and the Board set ups perfect for players and spectators and speedy service at the bar from the staff always appreciated, the food waggon outside also superb to meet the needs of everyone all day long. A Pairs event underway first and an excellent warm up for players in action later in the Individual events.
Dawson/Baxter 2-0 Daniels/Fisher Smith/Marren 2-1 Delderfield/Hanslip
Smith/Marren 2-1 Dawson/Baxter
Some excellent games played in a fine spirit with Dave Smith and Brendan Marren coming out the eventual Champions although the Final could have gone either way as both Brendan Dawson and partner Lyndon Baxter had chances to win the match but in the end the cool figure of Brendan Marren struck the winning dart into Double 5 to claim the £200 Winners Prize with the Runners Up taking £100.
Cam Hinchcliffe 3-0 Fred Wilson Tommy Lishman 3-2 Lewis Pride Jake Patchett 3-0 Sam Hastings Ryan Hoggarth 3-0 Jake Toulson
Cam Hinchcliffe 3-1 Tom Lishman Ryan Hoggarth 3-0 Jake Patchett
Ryan Hoggarth ( 27.83 ) 3-0 ( 22.09 ) Cam Hinchcliffe
Before the start realistically 5 out of the 8 contenders had a good chance of winning if the hit form on the day, the 3 others at the younger end of the scale are still very much in a learning curve and will be stronger next time with another year’s experience under their belts. A comfortable enough opening for 3 out of the 5 favoured players as they swept into the Semi’s without dropping a leg whilst Tournament Favourite Tommy Lishman had a hard battle to see off Lewis Pride. Both Hull boys lost out at the Semi stage as Ryan Hoggarth blitzed Jake Patchett with 3 legs of superb darts to win 3-0 and Cam Hinchcliffe taking out ‘Lisho’ Tommy Lishman 3-1. So the Final came down to the explosive power of Cam Hinchcliffe against experienced Lancashire County Youth player Ryan Hoggarth. The game proved to be a fairly one sided affair in the end as outspoken Carlisle Utd fan Ryan ran away with it 3-0 after another display of power scoring and clean finishing that Cam didn’t have an answer for on the day with the sheer quality of Ryan’s play probably taking him a little bit by surprise, his only chance came in the opening leg with a shot at Tops on 78 that missed the target although Ryan’s 79 checkout was no gimme by any means but made to look easy by the Skipton youngster, after that Ryan went into overdrive to slam in back to back 17 darters finishing straight away on 56 and 35 to give Cameron no chance at all to get back into it. Walking in a ‘Boggo’ wonderland as hit rifled in 8 x 100 pluses, 7 of those coming in the last 2 legs with Cam doing his best to reply with 1 x 100 and 3 x 90 odds but he was just out gunned today by an inspired player who pockets a nice £200 winners cheque while the £100 for Cam at least some consolation for him.
Laura Tye 3-0 Tracey Gledhill Louise Simmonds 3-1 Katie Hoggarth Ginny Whittaker 3-1 Leah Wiltshire Sharon Whitfield 3-1 Kerry Buckley
Louise Simmonds 3-2 Laura Tye Ginny Whittaker 3-1 Sharon Whitfield
Louise Simmonds ( 15.99 ) 3-0 ( 13.01 ) Ginny Whittaker
6 girls in the draw probably all hoping that the 2 clear Favourites Laura Tye and Louise Simmonds might draw each other in the opening round, as it was they avoided each other but were drawn to meet in the Semi’s which gave the players in the bottom half of the draw a huge chance to reach a big Final without totally discounting the chances of Tracey Gledhill and Katie Hoggarth in the top half. As it turned out the favourites did contest the Semi with Louise scraping through a very nervy affair with both players having several doubles attempt to win the game with it all boiling down to Madhouse in the end. In the other section of the draw Rawdon player Ginny Whittaker had 3-1 wins over Leah Wiltshire and Sharon Whitfield and would be in with a great chance if Louise continued to throw with tension. In all truth the Ladies Final a bit of an anti-climax as Louise struggled to throw her normal game and the occasion maybe getting to Ginny as she confessed afterwards to ‘Not turning up’, certainly not the first or the last player to suffer that fate in a big game. A host of missed chances in the opening leg sealed Ginny’s fate really with Louise nicking it in 37 darts after 11 misses at doubles herself, the second only marginally better but Lou under no pressure at all to win in 34 darts, only in the last leg did the Yorkshire County A star start to play her true game with a steady 23 darter to win ugly as they say, not that she will mind too much with £200 in her back pocket to show for her troubles. Very few big scores in the game with a 100 and 140 coming from Lou while Ginny could only muster a 133 in return but £100 for her not a bad days work either.
Alex Pride 3-1 Alan Aoslin Trevor Tye w/o John Roberts Craig Fisher 3-0 Paul Priestland Mally Welsh 3-2 Mick Wiltshire Ian Brown 3-1 Pete Riley Brendan Dawson 3-2 Simon Rimmington Terry Temple 3-0 Steve Kelly Ian Falkingham 3-0 Andrew Clifford Curtis Turner 3-1 Mark Hanslip Rich Winpenny 3-2 Steve Silver Rob Sharp 3-1 Carl Brocklehurst Josh Scales 3-0 Danny Hall Tony Darlow 3-0 Jonathan Daniels Tom Sykes 3-0 Tony Farrow Tony Wort 3-1 Joe Harrison Kris Namnieks 3-1 Peter Baker
The opening round contested between players 17 to 48 in the Rankings for the right to play the Top 16 players in Round 2 in a redraw. A no show from John Roberts meant his drawn opponent Trevor Tye got the bye through. By and large the big guns managed to avoid each other with the Tony Darlow v Johnny Daniels clash being the stand out tie with tournament third favourite Tony coming through a potentially tricky game with a 3-0 win. Mally Welsh has had the Indian sign over Mick Wiltshire all season in their clashes and a close encounter went the way of the experienced St Albans SL star again with a 3-2 win. Rank outsider Ian Falkingham was throwing like a demon on the practice board and went on to compound the misery for Andrew Clifford with a 3-0 win while Steve Silver went 2-0 up courtesy of a 112 finish but was reeled in by Rich Winpenny who replied with a 117 checkout to help him turn the match around for a hard fought 3-2 win. The other 3-2 game resulted in a win for ponytailed Sowerby Bridge player Brendan Dawson over slimline School Teacher Simon Rimmington, Elsewhere no shocks or surprises as all the favoured players in the betting list came through without too much anxiety.
Rich Winpenny 3-2 John Clifford Rob Sharp 3-0 Ian Falkingham Terry Temple 3-1 Steve Hattersley Craig Nelmes 3-2 Kris Namnieks Tony Darlow 3-1 Jonathan Hewitt Brendan Dawson 3-2 Callum Hall Jaron Esteve 3-1 Mark Featherstone Brendan Marren 3-2 Lyndon Baxter David Lammie 3-1 Bryan Harrison Curtis Turner 3-1 Tom Sykes Josh Scales 3-2 Mark Leonard Ian Ward 3-1 Craig Fisher Les Delderfield 3-0 Tony Wort Alex Pride 3-1 Mark Gale Ian Brown 3-0 Paul Doherty Mally Welsh 3-1 Trevor Tye
Although the Big 4 of Temple, Darlow, Marren and Delderfield were kept well apart in the redraw they all had tough ties against players capable of beating them on their day with Lyndon Baxter coming closest as he took Brendan Marren to a decider but just like in the Pairs Final Lyndon just couldn’t quite finish the job, elsewhere Craig Nelmes shaded the Halifax clash with a 3-2 win over Kris Namnieks, a season of steady progress for Kris who will be looking to push on next season as he has the ability to go further in competitions than he has managed so far. A great season for Mark Featherstone whose hard work on the practice board paid off with some fine results on the match board, however he couldn’t topple inform Jaron Esteve, the stress of a house move to Ossett not affecting ‘The Jazzman’ as he still waits patiently for his County debut after 2 years of sublime form. A very even looking game went David Lammie’s way as he beat Bryan Harrison 3-1 and equally so the battle of Youth starts Curtis Turner and Tom Sykes although at 21 Tom is just about clinging on to Youth status and this time he had to give ground to the younger man as Curtis came through 3-1. No doubt Ian Ward had the performance of the round as he toppled highly fancied Craig Fisher 3-1 as the Barnsley star became the biggest casualty so far at 8/1 for the Title.
Rich Winpenny 3-1 Rob Sharp Terry Temple 3-1 Craig Nelmes Tony Darlow 3-0 Brendan Dawson Brendan Marren 3-2 Jaron Esteve David Lammie 3-1 Curtis Turner Ian Ward 3-1 Josh Scales Les Delderfield 3-1 Alex Pride Mally Welsh 3-1 Ian Brown
Apart from the odd exception the tournament was going to form with very few upsets and that pattern of events continued in Round 3 with 6 out of the 8 games finishing with a 3-2 scoreline. A tight 3-2 win for Brendan Marren over Jaz Esteve proved to be the closest match of the round, the Keighley star who finished Top of the overall rankings again like he has done for the past few years really having to battle to make it through the rounds. Ominously for the rest of the field hot favourites Terry Temple, Tony Darlow and Les Delderfield all through to the Last 8 to be joined by Rich Winpenny, David Lammie, Ian Ward and Mally Welsh who at 50/1 was now the longest shot still left in the field.
Terry Temple 3-1 Rich Winpenny Tony Darlow 3-2 Brendan Marren David Lammie 3-0 Ian Ward Les Delderfield 3-0 Mally Welsh
Woodlesford’s Rich Winpenny one of the few players at BDP to hold 2 wins over Terry Temple this season and he should really have taken this game into a decider but missed 6 darts at Doubles when well in command of leg 4 and paid the price. Mally Welsh had performed superbly all day to win his 3 games all against players of equal stature but the step up against the class of Les Delderfield just proved to be too big an ask and the Shipley legend came through 3-0. David Lammie has fitted into BDP like a hand in a glove after his move down from Scotland, the amiable Scot has helped out behind the scenes in times of need this season and is highly popular amongst his peers and has produced the goods on the board too and now with a chance of claiming the biggest prize of all after a 3-0 win over Ian Ward. Yet another 3-2 game for Brendan Marren but this time he was on the losing side as Tony Darlow edged him out as the Top 3 favourites in the bookies list all now into the Semi Finals along with 12/1 shot Dave Lammie.
Semi Final 1
Tony Darlow ( 23.89 ) 3-1 ( 25.62 ) Terry Temple
The Title Favourite and Holder Terry Temple got off to the perfect start in the first Semi with a 14 dart opener against Tony Darlow which included a Maximum score, however he couldn’t maintain that level of play and was strangely inconsistent for the remainder of the game which meant Tony was able to win the next 3 legs without being overly convincing himself in 21, 23 and 20 darts and probably would have expected to have had to play much better to beat Terry. As it was a haul of 6 x 100 pluses and 3 scores in the 90’s proved to be enough to get the job done along with Tony’s ever reliable finishing which rarely lets him down. A strange game for Terry as consistency is very much his strong point usually but he just had far too many poor scores which couldn’t compensate for his big shots of 180, 174, 137 and 123 along with 5 other scores in the 90’s.
Semi Final 2
Les Delderfield ( 23.12 ) 3-0 ( 24.70 ) David Lammie
In the week that Ronnie Biggs died it was quite apt that Les Delderfield should pull off some daylight robbery of his own to beat David Lammie in the all Shipley Semi Final. The big Scot probably still wondering how he lost the game never mind losing it 3-0. the fact that he did was all down to missed doubles in every leg with ‘Old Campaigner’ Les there to mop up in each of them in 24, 21 and 20 darts. Like Tony in the first Semi Les had come away with the win without playing anywhere near his best as he hit a 171, 4 x 100 pluses and 3 scores in the 90’s to take the win while David generally scored the better of the two players as he hit 3 x 140’s, 3 x 100’s and a 97 score but a dozen missed opportunities in total at doubles proved his undoing as a golden chance to reach the Final went begging with Les seemingly there for the taking on this occasion.
Les Delderfield ( 29.90 ) 4-1 ( 26.24 ) Tony Darlow
Both players knew they would have to up their level of performance considerably from the Semi’s to become a double title holder with Les winning the GF back in 2007 and Tony in 2011. The Final lived up to expectation with both players upping their game particularly Les who took control right from the start with 180 score in the opening leg to set up a 15 dart hold and having taken advantage of David Lammie’s missed doubles in the Semi he also took advantage of rare misses from Tony as he missed 6 from 40 to let Les in for a 20 dart steal to put him firmly on the back foot. Despite good scoring from Tony in leg 3 he couldn’t force the break back as Les held firm with a solid 17 darter to put him on the brink of victory although ‘The Tiger’ from Sheffield was never going to go down without a fight as he pulled a leg back in 18 darts but was given no chance in leg 5 as the 64 year old darts icon played like a dream with scores of 140, 140, 60 and 129 to leave 32 which he duly took out with the first dart to end the game fittingly with a brilliant 13 darter to rapturous applause from the crowd. A hefty Winners cheque of £1000 and the Trophy going to ever popular Les and deservedly so as he has been the man in form over the past few weeks while Tony goes away a Runner Up this time after a very satisfactory year for him all in all.
A very enjoyable day as always with Townville pretty much the ideal venue to host the Finals, the day’s events ran like clockwork with our organisers Harry Firth and Mick Dodds amongst the best in the business and all the players making their job easier by their promptness on the boards and relaying the results back quickly. Already changes afoot in store for next season with rule changes and entry fees in particular the main topic of change. The Committee also accepts the fact that they don’t always get things absolutely right and are open to constructive criticism but will not tolerate hostile abuse which sadly has been the case on the odd occasion, as players we have to remember that these people give up their time and put 100% effort into running competitions for our benefit so the least we can do is afford them the respect they deserve. Next is the BDP Classic on the 29th Dec then roll on 2014 and in the meantime a happy Christmas and New Year to everyone.