Matadors reclaim top spot in tense oche finish

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Matadors came out on top as the Sid Dennis and Sons Ltd Darts League’s Web Signs Division One’s top two met at the Ex Service, leapfrogging 501s to regain first place in the process.

A fantastic game saw more than 80 sheet shots and 16 legs under 20 darts, plus three 180s.

Matadors took the early initiative, leading 3-1 after the first singles, John Walton (19 and 20 darts) being the only 501s winner.

The doubles were shared with Sam Hewson and Karl Jon Forrington hitting the best leg of the night, a fantastic 12-darter, so Matadors held a 4-2 lead.

The final set of singles saw super sub Pete Evans meet Matadors’ James Janney, with all three legs below 20 darts and some outstanding scoring, hitting six ton pluses and 17 and 19 dart legs.

It was Pete who came out the victor 2-1 but James hit seven ton pluses and a 19 darter to go with his six 100-plus scores from earlier.

Man of the match Kev Tomlinson won the next one for the Matadors with a 15 and 13 darter to give them a 5-3 lead with two to play.

Kev earlier had a 14 and 15 darter along with 13 ton pluses including a maximum.

Gordy Smith then beat Karl Forriington, despite Karl hitting his second 180 of the night, and a 16 dart leg.

Karl had a total of 10 100-plus scores on the night and Gordy hit nine.

So with one to play it was a do or die match for the 501s.

The 501s’ Scott Sutton met Matadors captain Sam Hewson, who won it for the defending champs courtesy of an 18-dart leg.

Scott hit a total of 10 100-pluses while Sam hit 11.

The 501s’ Richard Hughes had an indifferent night as he snapped a point with his last throw before his first game, and was obviously out of sorts having to change his darts before the match, while John Walton hit a total of 10 tons or better.

Belly Endz and Liberal Lads, two teams proving difficult to beat, met and proved just that.

Mark Forman (11 ton-pluses), Martin Bell (11, including a 116 finish) and Lee Yates (seven including a 119) saw the Endz lead lead 3-1 after the first singles.

Paul Gelder (nine) sheet shots was the only winner in this section for the Lads , but when they took both the doubles with Eric Hammond and Paul hitting a 16-dart leg, it was all square.

Belly Endz won two of the first three singles to give them a narrow 5-4 lead going into the final game, but Lads’ Rick Seaman won the last one to force a draw.

He had four ton-pluses while Gordon Mcquillan managed a total of seven sheet shots for the Lads but lost both his singles.

The final game in this division saw Dartvaders win 8-2 over the Spitfires with plenty of high scores.

Lee Dore Snr (8x100, 107, 135, 180 and an 18 dart leg), Wayne Clarke (3x100), Scott Smith (2x100, 140 and a 16 dart leg with partner Dave Brewin in the pairs), Brewin (17 darter, 7x100) threw well.

Spitfires’ main marksmen on the night were Martin Boss (3x100), Tom Thornton (100, 2x140) and Liam Simms (100, 103, 121).

In the Piper Window Systems Division Two, top again met second.

Ex Service AAs hosted leaders Gunslingers, who took the opening singles 3-1 with Mark Williams (6x100, 125), Adam Scott (3x100, 125) and S.E. Butler (7x100, 125, 140) doing well.

The doubles were shared and when the Gunslingers took the first of the final singles, the AAs found themselves staring down both barrels as they trailed the match 5-2.

But Mark Carter (5x100, 125, 140) and captain fantastic Wayne Burles (7x100, 2x140, 180) pegged it back to 5-4.

Andy Hardy then hit 3x100, 123 in his only game to beat D. Butler (3x100, 140) to force a 5-5 draw.

Vine Aces had a good long game with the Ex Service Pensioners, with plenty of high scores as the Pensioners ended up 7-3 winners.

Mick Seager (2x100, 140), Kyle Davis (3x100, 132, 2x140), Spencer Davis (2x100, 121, 2x125, 139, 140) threw well for the Aces and Darren Taylor (6x100), Gary Garton (3x100, 125), Graham Froud (2x100, 125, 140) and Ray McIvor (121, 125) did likewise for the Pensioners.

Liberal Us drew the opening singles 2-2 against Railroad Cobras, and again shared the singles, leaving the match delicately balanced at 3-3 with the final single to play.

Andy Thompson (100, 133) won the first to give the Cobras the advantage, then Stewart Giles (4x100) and new signing Chris Troth (4x100, 125, 140) won their singles to give Liberal a slender 5-4 lead.

James Jenkins secured the win and. despite hitting 2x100, 121, 128, 180, he found old stager Stuart Corsen (100, 140) too strong as he beat James and forced the draw 5-5.

Roy Parnham hit 171 for the Cobras.

Cricket Club and Travellers shared their opening singles 2-2 with Ricky Gelder (4x100, 140) and Ian Bowker (2x100) getting the Travellers’ points.

The doubles were shared, leaving the match poised at 3-3.

Cricket Club then upped their game, winning the last four singles to run out 7-3 winners with Alistair Ainsworth (2x100, 112, 140), Paul Butcher Lucas (100, 120, 2x140 and a 114 finish), Adam Ford (4x100) and Lewis Rawlings (100, 116) all impressing.