From The Archive: Around The Circuit.

During the Covid-19 difficulties we are publishing a series of articles, from various Issues, of Darts World Magazine. Often our most popular pieces are regular round ups from certain areas or with a special interest. Around the Circuit is one of those.

Liz Fletcher -Wright from late 2019 (Issue 564):

Masters Mayhem?

What a week it was at the World masters draws redraws seedings fictitious names you name it you could not have made it up, everyone blaming everyone else admitting they put in names in case they missed someone out how ridiculous, being held to ransom by 13/16 of the ladies seeds.

BDO Logo
BDO – Oops?

The draw in my opinion was wrong and should only have had 8 seeds in the ladies, yes people and players are still talking about this issue today it really does leave the doors open to many events regarding putting in false names just to try and seed 16 players, does this really happen I would hope not, however if common-sense had prevailed to allow 16 seeds you would needed to have put in 129 names.

Anyone who has to do a draw at any big major tournament, and the World Masters is one of 3 majors, so it needs to do it correctly, each player and representative who entered into the World masters had to pay £20 to make sure they were registered, the BDO must have had all those names down and with those payment it gave a correct figure of how many players had entered. The correct monies sorted out beforehand to register (that should have been sufficient) the draw to be out within 72 hours of the event, for such a big event as the WM where there has never been such a turmoil in both the ladies and the men’s was really quite embarrassing for some.

I could go on, but I just know that whatever is said and whatever happened it was everyone else’s fault except the organisers of the tournament.

Now apart from that the last 16 men and the last 8 ladies who were on the television it went really well at the Circus Tavern, the darts were awesome, it was not as busy as expected however the support was superb for every player, the commentary was second to none and it made a change to watch some excellent darts from both the men and the ladies.

Congratulations to John O’Shea and Lisa Ashton on securing both World masters Titles, such a shame the Trophies they gave out were abysmal for such a major Tournament, I have given out better for my players player of the year. That’s all for now regarding the World Masters it has finished now but plenty of lessons learnt from this I hope, and someone should be accountable for the errors.

The Grand Slam 2019:

After the World Masters it was the Grand Slam of darts in Wolverhampton where they decided to allow 6 men and 2 ladies from the BDO to enter this tournament, it has always been 8 BDO men and it was refreshing to see this change, the last time the ladies were invited was in 2010 when Tricia Wright and our lovely friend Stacy Bromberg, who is no longer with us, both those ladies played in the very first PDC Women’s World Darts Championship and it has never been played since 2010, these ladies played superb against the men, shame it has taken so long to allow another two very talented ladies into the Grand Slam, let’s hope they will allow the ladies to compete every year in this tournament, as they do in the PDC worlds. Or maybe Barry Hearn will do something for the ladies along the lines as the men do, maybe have their own challenge tours etc, something to think about as I am sure that a lot of ladies would go this time to play in the PDC if a ladies event was announced.


However, both Lisa Ashton the BDO World’s Number one and Mikuri Suzuki our BDO Ladies World Champion, those two ladies gave a great account of themselves and thoroughly deserved that chance, they I am sure will have learnt lessons from this great tournament, they both did themselves proud and even though they lost they can hold their heads up high. Onwards and upwards to them both in their next tournament.

I would like to mention our lady commentator of the week at the grand Slam, Laura Turner, what a credit to commentating she is and let’s hope she gets more of this in the future, she was very knowledgeable not just on the ladies playing but the men as well, I am pretty sure that anyone out there who was listening to her would love to have her as their permanent commentating partner, not just in darts but she came over as f she had been doing this for years, well done Laura and congratulations lets hope you will be doing the same at the 02 when you are not playing, we need more lady commentators within the darts and any other sporting events.


Rhian Griffiths in action (pic:BDO)

Surrey travelled away to Gwent for their 3rd game of the season, where we were hoping to gain another win, however Gwent had other ideas, our ladies B lost 4-2 LOM was Marie Barthrop with a 15.49ave our men’s B lost 7-5 MOM was Gary Trodd with a 27.71ave, going in to Sundays A games our ladies were back to winning way Laura Hewitt on her debt A game won, the ladies won 2-4 overall, welcome back to winning ways for our LOM Laura Tuner who had a 23.86 ave. Onto our men’s A who lost 7-5 our MOM was Darryl Pilgrim with a very impressive 32.17, the result ended in a win for Gwent 20-16, I would just like to mention one of the ladies from Gwent, Rhian Griffiths what an awesome talent and so good to see her back o winning ways, her ladies A average beat most of the other players men included who played over the weekend it was an incredible 30.67ave well done Rhian keep it going for the rest of the season.

Surrey lets regroup for our last home game against Kent lets get that win before the Christmas and new year break.

I would at this time like to wish all our readers Darts World and those that help me by giving me things to write about during the year of 2019, thanks to Andy for putting up with me getting my column in just before the deadline thanks for your help and being patient with me.

That’s all for now, Liz

Liz Fletcher-Wright

From the Archive: Eddie Norman Retires From Darts.

Darts World recently published news of Dr. Eddie Norman’s retirement from his, hugely significant, involvement with the sport of darts:

As a former player and founder member in the West Of England Darts Super League when it was first formed way back in 1970, I would like through your columns to say a big thank you  on his retirement on January 1 2020, to Dr. Eddie Norman the founder of The West of England Darts Organisation and  West of England Super League for giving so many players past and present the chance to play top quality darts in the West of England region. 

As well as founding the West Of England Darts Organisation, Eddie was a founder member in January 1973 of the British Darts Organisation when it was established at Muswell Hill in London  along with other founder members including, Olly Croft, Sam Hawkins, Les France, Jock Cameron , Alan Mabbut, Norman Byram, Bill Sheppard and Ken Nicholas amongst others. 

Eddie was the first Competition Secretary of the British Darts Organisation. 

Eddie went on to found the World Masters, The British Open Individual Championship in Bristol and the First Home International Darts Championships between the national teams of Scotland, Ireland, Wales and England again held in Bristol. 

Further international darts matches were played  and organised by Eddie for the first time between the national teams of Ireland, Wales , Isle of Man and Scotland when they played the West of England team in Dublin, Pontypool and Glasgow. 

Eddie arranged for the  national teams of Sweden and the  full USA teams to tour the UK playing  several counties and international matches. 

In 1985 his firm The House of Darts International was included in the Queens Christmas Day Speech the first time she had ever mentioned darts. 

Dr Norman also arranged for members of the West  of England Darts Organisation to travel to Australia,  Norway,  Russia, Malta, Sweden, Gibraltar , Turkey, Singapore , Bermuda, Philippines,  Hong Kong, New Zealand, Denmark , Holland and Germany to play international matches. 

After leaving the British Darts Organisation and  the West of England Darts Organisation behind , Eddie went on to found the United Kingdom Darts Federation and the British Inter City Darts Organisation in  which  inter-city teams , including teams from  amongst others the cities of Bath, Wells, Worcester, Cardiff,Leeds,  Winchester, Exeter, Birmingham , Bristol, Gloucester, Coventry and Leicester played twelve a side matches across the UK on Saturday nights each month.  

Eddie also organised and sponsored many charity darts events for hospices and children’s hospitals. 

He founded in 1982 the World Amateur Darts Organisation in Barbados , the first individual championship  and Gold Medal being won by Bernie Manton of Worcester, with Kevin Hayes of the USA winning the silver medal and Herbie Brown of Jamaica winning the Bronze. Medal. 

Over fifty years involved in organising darts both globally and in the UK , Eddie Norman has helped to create the precursor of darts as we see see it today. . 

And on behalf of many , many players like myself who have played in darts competitions organised by Eddie, I would like to say thank you to this unique darts organiser and wish him well on his retirement after over fifty years being involved in the  organisation of the sport of darts , both globally and in the United Kingdom. 

Pete  and Valerie Barnes (and on behalf of others

Patrick Chaplin’s: The Last Word. Women,World Champions And The BDO!

To give our online readers some extra material, during the current times of increased isolation and physical distancing, we are re publishing som epieces from recent editions of the Darts World Magazine (Print Edition). Below Is Patrick Chaplin’s from February:

Headliner Hogger? Fallon Sherrock
Pic: Christopher Dean / Scantech Media

So the World Championships are over for another year; one a spectacle, the other, well I’m not so sure…

But of course the one person who hogged all the headlines was Milton Keynes’ Fallon Sherrock and deservedly so. What a performance! You don’t need me to tell you the story. We all know that Fallon became the first female player to beat a top male player in a World Championship and went on to beat another before falling to a third. In all my years of writing about the ladies game I’ve never known anything like it and I guess neither have you.

The media response to Fallon’s breaking through the ‘glass ceiling’ was immense, even warranting column inches in The Economist magazine! Journalist Bo Franklin wrote

Ms Sherrock, a far cry from the beer-bellied blokes who used to typify the game, symbolises how, in recent years, darts has gone from a peculiar British pastime to an entertainment juggernaut with transatlantic ambitions.

This has been great for Fallon who will surely go on to even better things but it’s also so good for women’s darts. Now that women’s darts has attracted the world’s attention what will happen? How can the momentum be maintained? I was hoping that it would start with impressive ladies’ performances in the BDO World Championships which largely, I have to say, disappointed.

Sadly Fallon’s success was, if only temporarily, overshadowed by the BDO having to slash the prize money in its World Championships something that, it appears, warranted Fallon withdrawing from that tournament. Part of me felt disappointed for her and the sport of darts but the other part said “Good on you Fallon. You now have control.”

Fallon will now work with her management and the PDC (probably harder than she has ever worked before) and who knows where it may lead. Of course, other women have preceded her by qualifying for the PDC World Championships. I expect the best of them, including Lisa Ashton, Anastasia Dobromyslova and Mikuru Suzuki, to lead the rest of the pack into this new era of women’s darts. If the opportunities present themselves then I am absolutely sure they will embrace them and that many others will then follow.

Fallon has shown that it can be done. (We all knew it could. We just didn’t know exactly when.) A top woman player can beat top men. Now all we need is for a woman to go one better and become PDC World Champion, I guess not yet awhile, but having said that who thought Fallon could beat Ted Evetts, let alone 11th seed Mensur Suljovic and then give Chris Dobey a run for his money? Come on. Be honest!

2020 will be a very important year for women’s darts. Who’s to say they can’t emulate the success of women in cricket and football who have made great strides in their sports in such a relatively short space of time?

Just under the wire, of 50 years of age, Wright claimed his first World title.

Emotional scenes too when, at last, Peter ‘Snakebite’ Wright lifted his first world title, so well-deserved. We’ve all watched him come so close but fail at the final hurdle. He desperately wanted to win the title before he was 50 and he did just that by the narrowest of margins (He reaches that age next month) but he also broke his duck by at last beating MvG in a major final. No more ‘The Nearly Man’, I can see Wrighty taking all before him this coming year buoyed up by that singular, vital win at Ally Pally and a new found confidence born of that success and guaranteed financial stability.

New Signings for 2020 include MVG & VVV!

And talking of MvG, I was thrilled to learn in early January that ‘Mighty Mike’ and his great friend Vincent van der Voort have both been signed by WINMAU. Reaction on social media has been incredible with many agreeing that WINMAU is by far the best place to be. How can I disagree with that? After all, WINMAU sponsor my research! No surprise though that business has been ‘crazy’ for MvG and Vincent’s products at WINMAU since the very moment of the announcements of the signings.

On a much sadder note it seems, at the time of writing, that the BDO is in turmoil and that January 2020 will go down in darts history as the month that the organisation responsible for making darts what it is today descended into terminal decline. I have no inside knowledge, and writing this a few days before the BDO World Championship ends, can only judge from what I read in the national newspapers, social media and the BDO website. PDC Chairman Barry Hearn, was reported in Metro as stating “They’re f***ed”.

Certainly that appears to be the case but part of me hopes that the organisation that started the ‘modern era’ for darts can think deeply about its future and, if it decides that it has one, goes about carefully redefining its purpose and reassessing its worth. Who knows? The BDO Board may decide that it can serve no useful purpose in which case then this previously ground-breaking darts organisation will, like the NDAGB before it, be consigned to the history books.

Can the BDO survive? I’d appreciate your views. However, it may well be that, by the time you read this, the question is purely academic.

Patrick Chaplin

Patrick is adarts historian, enthusiast and academic. His work is supported by Winmau and can be seen in fuller detail here.

Mic Drop! The December Instalment from John Fowler’s Darting Life.

John Folwer is a an MC, Host and Darts Referee. He has worked with legendary players and promoted darts all over the globe. He recently made his World Championship Officiating debut. His monthly column appears in Darts World Magazine.

Here is December 2019’s Episode:

Hello again readers, what a month I’ve had since my last report. A fantastic week in the sun at the Northern Cyprus open, culminating in calling the finals, sharing those duties with Mick Connerton, on the Sunday  afternoon, great job my friend.

I actually played in two of the events, reaching the last 16 of the warm up singles for players that had no partners in the mixed pairs. I decided to enter the Men’s singles on the Saturday night where I was drawn against the number 14 seed, Gabriel Pascaru of Romania. I missed 4 darts at a double in the 1st leg and the rest as they say is history. I may get to referee for him at the World Championships at the O2 Indigo in January. 

John has now called, referreed and officiated in three major TV events and one major final.

No sooner had I landed back in England, it was time to repack my bag for a weekend in Essex at the iconic Circus Tavern for the World Masters as seen on Eurosport. It was brilliant to meet up with the majority of the refereeing team again, great job again folks. I called four great matches on the Saturday, then two quarter finals, one of the semi finals and the first five sets of the final. 

Congratulations to John O’shea on his victory and commiserations to Scott Waites, the runner up and to all the other qualifiers too. Well done to Lisa Ashton on her victory in the ladies tournament. It was great to see Bobby George and his lovely wife Marie in attendance on the Sunday. Many thanks to everyone for their kind comments and words of encouragement, they are really appreciated.

I am very much looking forward to January at the O2 Indigo. Toward the end of October 2019, at an exhibition in Wittlich,in front of 1500 fans, I finally added Raymond van Barneveld to the list of World champions that I have worked with. It was a fantastic night, in another beautiful part of Germany, that also included Ian White, Max Hopp and Gabriel Clemens.

John likes to enjoy all aspects of our great game! The social element is just as important as the official one.

By the time that you read this I will have officiated at the Malta open for the 3rd time in 4 years. Looking forward to a weekend in Dublin with Devon Petersen and Stephen Bunting at the beginning of December, always a great experience in the Emerald Isle. 2020 looks like it will provide more fantastic times with the diary filling up nicely. Already plenty of events booked in Germany and Switzerland is also booked again. Also my first darts event in Jersey has been confirmed. 

I would like to take this opportunity to thank you all for reading, hopefully you enjoy reading about it as much as I do writing about it. 

Signing off for 2019 and wishing you all a very merry Christmas and a prosperous New Year in 2020.

Colin Lloyd – The Big Questions!

As we said recently Lloydy is often underestimated by darts folk, especially those of more recent vintage. Here he gives a taste of a remarkable life/career in darts:

Since his competitive retirement, Lloydy is doing more TV along with his corporate and exhibition work.

Thanks to Red Dragon Darts for their assistance with this article. Checkout Colin Lloyds latest dart models here:

Hypnotising, The Answer to Nerves? – From the Archive

You may have heard of modern dart players experimenting with a number of psychological techniques. Hypnosis has been linked to a number of elite professionals, over the past few years, with Raymond van Barneveld having a poor experience related to it a few years ago. On the other side, Glen Durrant is said to have benefitted from such therapy.

As if to prove there is nothing new under the sun I noticed the following article in a back copy of Darts World 1976.

The Lads From the Red Lion Won’t Take a Trance!

I’ve often been accused of playing darts as if I was in trance, but I didn’t think anybody actually meant it. In future, though I won’t be so sure.

I am reliably informed that a number of teams are considering the possibility of hypnosis to play better darts.

Original article appeared in 1976 – Nothing new under the sun!

Just what the average league rule book says about this I shudder to think (over to you Dr Darts) but what I would like to know is this; Does it Work?

The team that started all was The Red Lion ay Brackley Northants. Just after Christmas, they were thrashing about, fourth from bottom of the Brackley & District league, and desperately seeking a way to win matches.

Landlord Bill Foddy suggested taking the advice of local hypnotist Bernard Askew who had helped people to stop smoking. Bill’s son Tim, who is a member of the team, tells me:

“We had a team meeting about the idea but decided not to go ahead. Apparently there could not be ‘mass hypnosis’ and it would have to be done individually.” “I suppose we thought it might have looked silly, so we decided to fight on without the aid of hypnosis.”

I wish I could report a happy ending to The Red Lion’s brave decision. Alas, they have now dropped to third from bottom of the league. Thus we are no nearer to knowing if hypnotism could be the answer for darting dunces.

Other sports have experimented with hypnosis, with mixed results. International athletes have reported that it can help after injuries, by giving confidence. But when Stockport County football team were hypnotised, just before a match, they lost 2-1.

A specialist gives a clue: “It is not magic. Hypnosis may help you to relax or sleep better, but it cannot make a five-minute miler into a four-minute miler. Training is what really counts.”

So, there you have it. If I should happen to be playing darts with a glazed look in the eye, please don’t ask to borrow a fiver. I may not have the power to refuse!

Originally published in Darts World No.46 (May 1976)

Edits: Darts World – CJH

Gabriel Clemens – Pushing For German Supremacy.

German darts supremo Gabriel Clemens is fast becoming the name from the sport’s growth in Germany over the past decade.

Gabriel Clemens is having a bumper 2019, how far will he go?
Pic : PDC

Our Darts World reporter LOCK UP TIPSTER added this summary of his superb year to Darts World ( Print Edition) in August 2019

Alongside previously better-known names like Max Hopp and Martin Schindler, the World No56 (at the time of writing) has had plenty to offer since starting to make more frequent appearances on the PDC Tour.

Clemens won his Tour-Card at the first attempt in January 2018, at the Euro Q School Event, and did not waste much time in showing us his true ability. Clemens reached his first Pro Tour final within five months of gaining his card and only lost out, in a deciding leg, to Gary Anderson.

An impressive 2018 also saw the German thrower make his World Series of Darts debut, before reaching the last 16 of the Players Championship Finals and making his debut at the Alexandra Palace for the World Championships.

If in 2018 it was pleasing enough to try to progress, as a player, then 2019 is proving a whole new level. Clemens hit the ground running in February with another Pro Tour final, losing out 4-8 to an in form Gerwyn Price. Gabriel then made it a trio of final defeats in Pro tour events, going down 4-8 again in April, this time Johnny Clayton was the victor.

A strong victory over RVB set ‘The Giant’ on his way in the World Series.

Neither the experience gained from the tour nor the rapid growth in German darts have done Gabriel any harm. He was again been invited to the German edition of the World Series enjoying an excellent run defeating both RVB, and Rob Cross, whilst averaging almost 100. Clemens reached the final by taking out Mensur 8-3 in the semi, here his checkout percentages made all the difference in a lower scoring game.

Again, however, the final was to prove the final hurdle. Peter Wright edged ‘The Giant’ as Clemens is known, 8-6. It may well have been that Gabriel ran out of steam. The Euro events involve playing more than one high-pressure game on the same day. This is a distinct disadvantage for the less experienced player. despite the disappointment, the TV stage experience can be nothing but beneficial in the longer run

The combined result, of 2019’s successes, has been to catapult Clemens to within reach of countryman Martin Schindler in the PDC rankings. Should he overhaul ‘The Wall’ it is highly likely that he will represent his nation in next years World Cup of Darts.

Next for ‘The Giant’ will be to maintain his form on the Pro Tour and consolidate a position within the top 64. This will ensure another appearance at The Players Championship ( Pro Tour) Finals and ensure he is kept busy before returning to Ally Pally in December. These combined efforts should see him surpass Schindler who is currently outside the top 64.

It is not impossible ( at the time of writing) for Clems to continue his remarkable year by qualifying for the World Grand Prix and the European Championships as well as those listed above. However, they are not yet nailed on and will require qualifications and decent runs in multiple events. Nothing should be counted out during Clemens’ excellent year.

Conrgatulations & Good Luck for the rest of 2019, Gabriel!

Story: LOCKUPTIPSTER (August 2019)

Edits: DW Editorial Team (Oct 2019)