Open events are the unheralded testing ground for competitive darts. Whether they are small scale comps held in pubs and clubs for bragging rights and a memento or larger, independently promoted, regular opens for substantial prize funds, it is here where new or improving talent is seen and developed.
Send us the results of your events and we will report the movers and shakers from The Open Road.
Last Saturday the annual Tribute & Memorial dart competitions (Previously; Brian Fox & Bob Anderson Snr Memorial) were, once again, hosted and sponsored by the Academy club, in aid of the Heart of Darts charity.
The idea of the day is to bring the darting family together, in memory of and to pay tribute to, those who are no longer with us. It is a great day of darts while raising money for charity, to help those less fortunate than ourselves.
John Bartlett, the event organiser, thanked everyone for coming and asked for everyone in the club to take a few minutes to pay their respects to our loved ones, family and friends. As a mark of respect and remembrance, everyone joined a round of applause whilst John Bartlett read out the names on the role of honour.
John paid tribute to Roy Blackman, who sadly passed away one year ago to the day and also two people that had passed away this year, Andy Clare from the Chineham Chuckers darts team and most recently Roy Whitby, who was well known in Basingstoke playing for the Sherborne Club, Soldiers Return, Oakridge Club & Malsanger among others. He also played for Hampshire County. Everyone raised a glass to them and all of those who are no longer with us.
The Tribute & Memorial Pairs:
This year’s winners were Jason Heaver & Debbie Shadwell who beat Debbie’s husband Steve Shadwell & Colin Monk 3-2 in a close-fought final.
The losing semi-finalists were Graham Vernon / Phil Huggins losing out to Jason & Debbie 3-2 and in the other close-fought semi-final Ricky Humber /George Hakim also just losing out to Steve and Colin 3-2.
The Tribute & Memorial Singles:
This year’s title was won by Mark Thorne from Andover who beat Jason Heaver in another close-fought final. The losing semi-finalists were last year’s winner Mark Petchey losing 3-1 to Jason Heaver and Graham Vernon losing to Mark Thorne 3-2.
John and Tracey Bartlett, the organisers, were very pleased with what was a very well attended, successful, enjoyable & emotional day. A big thank you to everyone that attended and helping us raise a total of £1,165.00. This year all of the winners and runners up donated their winnings to The Heart of Darts Charity. Also, all of the winners of cash prizes in the money draw also donated these to the Heart of darts Charity.
The money collected was raised from sponsorship, entry fees, prize money, raffle and sale of Heart of Dart pens, keyring torches and pins and other donations.
Big thanks to the Academy snooker centre for their continued support of this event and our thanks also go to all the staff involved in helping making this event a success once again. We look forward to next year’s event and hope to see you all there.
The ‘Pearly King‘, who contributes his ‘London Pride’ section to Darts World, has dropped us this excellent summary of a new event taking place in the channel islands:
Many of the top players in the Channel Islands recently travelled to the beautiful island of Herm to compete in the inaugural Herm Open and Classic, with more than £3000 in prize money up for grabs over the weekend of the 18th and 19th October.
Although the ranks from Jersey were depleted due to the recent WDF World Cup in Romania, there were still plenty of “crapauds” who made the boat crossing from Guernsey confident of coming away with the spoils of victory.
The festivities started with a blind pairs to get everyone into the swing of things before the serious business started later on the first evening. The pairing of Mark Fletcher and Mark Buckingham looked to be a tough one to overcome, and so it proved as they made it to the final. They then eased to a straight legs victory against the duo of Simon de la Mare and Roger Spencer.
Friday night’s action started with the Classic, which was kindly sponsored by The Mermaid Tavern, the hosts for the weekend. The women would play their final the following evening, which would also see the men play both the semis and final.
Although only 12 ladies had entered both competitions, it did not detract from the quality of darts and it was difficult at the outset to predict who would walk away with the trophy. The first round saw some close games and that set the tone. Yvonne le Gallic and Liz Drew were among those who advanced but were pushed all the way by Angie le Bailly and Lorraine Porter respectively. In the quarters, Paula Exall and Gigi Fletcher had a real battle before Exall took it in the last leg. One semi saw Tracy Ingrouille defeat Exall in straight legs, but the other was another nailbiter, with Liz Drew going all the way before shrugging off a determined Ria Monamy to book her place in the final the following evening.
There were some tough games drawn in the early exchanges in the Men’s Classic, where it was equally hard to choose who the winner might be. The preliminaries saw Mark Fletcher go up against Nick Ogier. Simon de la Mare and Jason Allez were rewarded for their wins with another difficult game. De la Mare had to dig deep to see off Craig Quemard in five legs, and Allez lost another tight encounter that went all the way against Lee Savident.
The last 16 was equally tough, with 4 of the 8 games going to the decider. In the quarter-finals, Gao Gaspar, Mark Fletcher, Simon de la Mare and Ken Waters won through to finals night.
Saturday continued in the same vein, as the Manor Farm Open took centre stage. Again there were some very close games in the Ladies competition as they chased the prestige of becoming the first Champion. The semi-finals saw the winners advance in more comfort. Jo Ellis didn’t drop a leg to Gigi Fletcher, whilst Tracy Ingrouille got the better of Liz Drew in a dress rehearsal of the Classic Final.
The Men’s Open saw more games only go the minimum three legs but still threw up some surprises as well as some good performances. Jason Allez only needed 40 darts to overcome the challenge of Sid Bell, and Dave Parlby, who played well all weekend, overcame a tricky opponent in Callum Ferbrache. The quarter-finals saw plenty of fine darts, none more so from Lee Smith who cracked in a 152 finish to beat Parlby. Jason Allez beat Tim Cotterill, Eddie le Bailly saw off Neil Hutchinson and Nick Ogier defeated Mark Buckingham in the tie of the round.
The weekend culminated with the competitions drawing to an exciting conclusion. First up was the Men’s Classic Semi-Finals. Gao Gaspar started well, but couldn’t sustain his early scoring after taking the first leg and Mark Fletcher took advantage to rattle off three on the spin to advance. It was a closer affair in the other semi, as Simon de la Mare was taken all the way by Ken Waters before securing his spot.
Next up saw Tracy Ingrouille and Liz Drew battling for the honour of being called the first Herm Ladies Classic champion. Both ladies matched each other in the scoring department, but it was Ingrouille who was just that bit more clinical on the outer ring to take the best of seven contest in the fifth leg and pocket the trophy and £300 first prize.
The Men’s final was evenly poised after four legs. Mark Fletcher had the chance to break throw in what proved to be a pivotal fifth leg, but spurned the chance on offer. Simon de la Mare held on, and having first use of the oche in the last leg was to be crucial. De la Mare had that advantage, and he took out the winning double for the trophy along with £500.
The Men’s Open semi-finals followed, with Eddie le Bailly taking on Nick Ogier. With “Tedward” watching on from close quarters to provide inspiration, le Bailly was playing well and giving the Jersey supporters plenty to shout about. Ogier though had ideas of his own, and in the fourth leg struck the winning double against an honourable and sporting opponent who lost nothing in defeat.
The second semi turned out to be more one-sided than was anticipated. Lee Smith never really got going at any time in the match, and found Jason Allez in no mood to let him find his form and get back into the contest. Allez only needed to win in minimum time to book his place in the final.
Tracy Ingrouille was going for the double after taking the Classic, but Jo Ellis had hopes of her own in having her name on the Manor Farm Ladies Open trophy. Ellis nearly brought the house down, wiring double top for would have been a brilliant 114 checkout under pressure, but Ingrouille hung in and took her second title of the weekend in the sixth leg to add another £300 in the bank.
The last game of a thoroughly enjoyable weekend saw Nick Ogier and Jason Allez compete for the Manor Farm Open. Ogier played well, nearly hitting an 11 dart leg, but Allez just had that little bit more consistency at the vital times and it was he who took the £500 prize when hitting the match-winning double in leg five.
The weekend proved to be an overwhelming success, and in particular, thanks must go to Caroline La Touche who organised the event and made sure it ran so smoothly. The dates have already been put in place (October 16th and 17th) for the second staging of what is hoped will become a mainstay in the Channel Islands darting calendar, in what must be one of the most picturesque locations anyone could wish to play darts.
If you attend, play in or organise an open even or exhibition e-mail us a summary or report (with images if possible) to firstname.lastname@example.org
One of the most popular new features in Darts World is the Mic Drop column. John’s style, and many anecdotes, are proving popular with readers across the darting world.
Here is a taste of what to come in the November Edition (Print):
Hello, again Darts family. Where do I start this edition?
Only one word needed, WOW!!! Having recently become a contributor to Darts World, I was wondering what would be next on the agenda. Then, a couple of months ago, I was in Germany and noticed two missed calls on my mobile phone and a message on Facebook saying “Call me urgently please”. So I rang, the number turned out to be the BDO Chairman and I was pleasantly surprised to be asked if I was available to join the new group of BDO referees and if I was available for the World Darts Trophy weekend in Blackburn.
Naturally, I was only too happy to accept.
On the afternoon that my appointment was due to be made public, I decided to go out for a training walk along the canal towpath. From the moment it was announced, I had to sit down on a bench by the lock for 90 minutes because my mobile phone went into meltdown.
I would like to take this opportunity to thank each and every one of you that took the time to contact me for your very kind messages.
Very humbling to an old country boy like me…….
Complete article available in Darts World Magazine (Print & Digital) November 2019. Get your copy or subscribe here: www.dartsworld.com/product/magazine/
Despite our appreciation for Open Events and all who organise, promote and play in them, we cannot recall many that have reached their 21st birthday! Congratulations to all involved in the Bert & Phyl Kelly Pairs Events.
BERT & PHYL KELLY PAIRS DART COMPETITIONS 2019 (IN AID OF ST MICHAELS HOSPICE)
Once again the generous dart players of Basingstoke gathered to play the Bert Kelly Men’s Pairs and the Phyl Kelly Ladies Pairs to raise money for St Michaels Hospice. This year’s competitions were held once again at the Academy Club with both Men’s and Ladies pairs being played.
These competitions are held annually, this is the 21st year of it being held as the Bert Kelly & Phyl Kelly Pairs to honour the great work both Bert and Phyl Kelly did for darts in and around Basingstoke & Hampshire. The competitions were previously known as the Carnival Pairs, which they organised together for over 40 years. Together these competitions have been in existence for over 60 years, which is an incredible achievement.
This year, the Phyl Kelly Ladies Pairs final was contested by two new pairs and the new champions were Fiona Pickin / Becca Edwards, winning 3 -0 to the Runners Up, Jackie Coutts / Maria Agozzino.
The Bert Kelly Men’s Pairs winners this year were also new Champions, Kevan Merritt / Andy McNeil beat Roy Brown (who was no stranger to the final winning it a number of times in the past) & Dave Hewlett, in a well contested final. This year’s losing Semi-Finalists were Les Morris / Andy Saunders & Graham Vernon / Phil Huggins.
This year was very well attended and our thanks go to everyone for their generosity, raising a fantastic total of £500.00 for St Michaels Hospice, smashing our previous records.
On behalf of the charity, we would like to thank all those who attended and donated to help make this year’s event a success once again.
Thanks to the Basingstoke Darts League for advertising and promoting the event. A big thank you to the Academy Club for hosting the event and supplying the trophies and their bar staff for their help and support. The next charity darting event is the Tribute & Memorial singles & pairs at the Academy Saturday 26th October, see website for details.
The second James Ross Memorial Darts Championship was held at the Keppoch Inn, by Culloden, and sixty players played in three tournaments to honour James’ memory. Thanks to Jim MacNeil for the review.
In the opening tournament, Ayrshire’s Lorraine Hyde teamed up with Stephen Michie from Aberdeen and local player Jim Paterson to win the Triples competition. The champions defeated David Fraser from the Tarradale, Steve Munro from East End Arrows and Raymond Shiach, 3-0 in the final to land Lorraines’ second consecutive title.
Grampian player Stephen Michie took the Mens Championship and the £500 first prize with a 4-1 win over Highland’s Barry Maclean in the final. Barry took £200 as a consolation as Stephen added the Singles to his Triples success from earlier in the day.
Last year’s runner-up James Fraser was a semi-finalist this year along with Innes Spikeys player Stuart Pearce.
Kevin Wilson, Martyn Cameron, Robert Mackenzie and Davy Grant made up the last eight in the tournament.
Elgin’s Sarah Stephen had her name added to the prestigious trophy and also picked up £500, as she defeated Lorraine Hyde 3-0 in the final of the Ladies Singles, leaving Lorraine as runner-up two years in a row.
The semi-finalists were both from the newly formed Keppoch Belles darts team, Mandy Anderson and Jacqui Hill.
The quarter-finalists were last year’s champion Lynn Shearer, her daughter Caroline, Kate Anderson and Marian Ogg.
Twenty-four maximums were scored by Kevin Wilson (3), Barry Maclean (3), Davy Grant (3), Doug Duncan (2), James Fraser (2), Sandy Morrison (2), Gary Gunn (2), Stephen Michie (2), Martyn Cameron, Gary Henderson, Doug Milne, Stuart Pearce, and Angie Isbister.
The top checkout on the day came from James Fraser with a finish of 148, followed by Kevin Wilson (140), David Fraser (120), Sandy Morrison (119 & 110), Ally Ross (116 & 102), Martyn Cameron (116 & 100), Doug Milne (115) and Doug Duncan (108).
Kevin Wilson had 13 & 14 dart legs, Stephen Michie had a 13 dart leg, Davy Grant, Martyn Cameron and Barry Maclean all had 14 dart legs, Robert Mackenzie and James Fraser both had 15 dart legs.
Thanks to Jim MacNeil for the information and the Pics.
Nigel Heydon has won the West Midlands Open this Bank Holiday Monday with victory over Andy Hamilton. Heydon added the BDO ranked, title to the Darts for Heroes trophy that he claimed the day before.
England International Heydon, who has reached both PDC and BDO World Championships, had had a quiet 2019 so far. It seems he has reemerged in fine style.
In reaching the final ‘The Undertaker’ defeated Wayne Wall, Gary Stone before defeating Andy Hamilton 6-5 in the final.
Among those contesting the tournament were PDC star names such as Kevin Painter, Colin Osborne and former champion Nick Fullwell. The final stages were truly gripping with 6 out of 7 matches going to a deciding leg!
Quarter-Finals Dan Nicholls 4-5 Andy Hamilton Nick Fullwell 4-5 Jason Heaver Kevin Painter 4-5 Gary Stone Wayne Wall 2-5 Nigel Heydon
Semi-Finals Andy Hamilton 5-4 Jason Heaver Gary Stone 4-5 Nigel Heydon
Final Andy Hamilton 5-6 Nigel Heydon
Keep your eye out for a feature on the Darts for Heroes event that Nigel claimed over the weekend. Unusually, for a charity open, it is in its tenth year and goes from strength to strength.
Jim Williams (Wales) became the latest player to win the coverted Champion of Champions event in Cardiff last night. The Worthingtons sponsored event is growing into a much-anticipated event on the grassroots darts calendar.
Williams, who defeated Bradley Brooks in the final, joins an exclusive list of trophy holders. It was a tough day at a busy St Davids Hall in Cardiff. The 256 strong fields included a last-minute qualification from Gerwyn Price, who won through a rearranged qualifier after a late withdrawal. 1995 World Champion Richie Burnett went on a fine run as did Jon Worsley, known as Womble, who knocked out Price early on.
But it was Brooks and Williams who won through, the difficult best of 3 format, to contest the final. Williams closed out the youngster 2-0 to add the title to the other he has picked up this year.
Williams seems to like Red Dragon sponsored events which take place in his home nation. Earlier this year he collected a trophy at the Welsh Open weekend in Prestatyn.
Gerwyn Price, Johnny Clayton and Paul Hogan are amongst the famous names to have held the trophy aloft in its short history. Victory in the CoC leads to a surge in success for many of the winners it will be interesting to see what it brings for Williams.
Hello again everyone, I hope that you enjoyed my introductory account of how I got involved in the refereeing/MC’ing side of darts. This time I would like to tell you about some of the more exciting journeys I have made during my darting odyssey.
Taking nothing away from all of the other events, a particular example stands out. In November 2016 I was very fortunate to be invited to fly the 11 and a half hour journey to Tokyo and officiate at the PDJ final qualifying event for Ally Pally. My hosts were fantastic and I even had time to visit the city including the famous (and very high!) the Sky Tree Tower for some wonderful views of Tokyo. Great restaurants were certainly on the menu, you would never know from looking at me. I was very proud to be invited to return in September 2017 and repeat an unforgettable experience. The ‘Land of the Rising Sun’ is truly an amazing place to officiate.
For the last 3 years, I have done both the German and Swiss Open weekends and I have a great story from the 2nd German Open (The 1st one at Kalkar). I was refereeing a stage game in the afternoon between Tony O’Shea and a Swedish player I can only remember as Patrick. It was 3-3 and in the final leg Tony started with 100, his opponent replied with 81. Tony then hit treble 20, treble 20 and before he threw his last dart the stage went into total darkness. I heard Tony say “Oh darn it!”, or words to that effect, and threw his 3rd dart while it was still dark. As the dart hit the board, the lighting returned and yes you’ve guessed it “ONE HUNDRED AND EIGHTY “.
Among many highlights in my near seven years as a professional MC are 2 superb visits to Galway, always a brilliant crowd of crazy and funny people. I’ve been as far North as Fraserburgh and Keith in Scotland, again brilliant experiences and crowds. Malta has also proven enjoyable, twice, and last year I had a late call up for Luxembourg as Marco Meijer had unfortunately picked up a back injury. Glad to say that he has recovered from that. Visiting Athens in March this year, for the inaugural Greek Festival of Darts, meant working within the sight of the Acropolis and I have to learn the Syrtaki (Zorba’s Dance) for next year, don’t ask!
Shortly, I will be working again with one of our most entertaining dart players, Hawaii 501 himself Wayne Mardle. Anyone that has seen Wayne, in exhibition play, will know that one of his party tricks is to blow the dart into the board with his mouth. I have worked with Wayne on many occasions now and he has actually blown the dart into the winning double on at least 10 occasions. As ever, I have had the best view in the house!
Until next month, stay healthy and happy. Hopefully, I’ll see you at an event soon.
Follow John on twitter at @jayeffmc or look him up on facebook. An extended version of John’s Column will be in a forthcoming edition of Darts World Magazine ( Print Edition) Subscribe here:https://www.dartsworld.com/product/magazine/
Hello to all you dart players, fans and readers out there in ‘DartsWorld’. Welcome to the first of my monthly accounts of life on the road as a professional darts MC. By way of introduction, I would like to give you an insight into how I got involved on the microphone as opposed to the playing side of our wonderful sport.
I started off by helping as a referee for Oxfordshire’s home county matches. To be honest, I didn’t really enjoy it to start with, but the more I undertook the more I got into it. Then in January 2009, while playing for Oxfordshire in Yorkshire, someone mentioned that I should think about organising an exhibition with me as the compère. It was one of those “at the bar” chats that planted a seed. Fortunately, former World No5 Dennis Smith, was a teammate at the time and he offered his services for a reasonable fee and I decided to make it happen.
So, on the 2nd of May 2009 at Bicester Town FC about 40 spectators joined us for a good fun evening of darts and humour. Later that year I organised my 2nd event at the same venue. This time Jamie Caven was the star attraction and, as always with ‘Jabba’ another great evening ensued.
By the end of that year, my first outside booking arrived and what a start I would be MCing for a 3 time World Champion! Despite my initial nerves Martin Adams proved a pleasure to work with and we have done so several times since. Over the following two-three years, I organised and hosted more exhibitions in the Bicester area, including with the late Eric Bristow MBE, Steve Beaton, Wayne Mardle, Peter Manley and many more. Didcot GWRSA became almost a second home where we also hosted great events too, with World Champions and other great players.
When I, unfortunately, lost my beautiful mother in July 2012, just 10 months after my wonderful father had passed away, I decided that I was going to try to make a career as a professional MC. The first thing I did was to ring my good friend and former World Champion, Bob Anderson to ask his opinion on my plans. When he replied with an immediate positive response my mind was made up.
Over the next few months, I will tell you about some of my fantastic experiences at home and abroad, including my trips to Japan, unforgettable journeys and experiences. In the last 5 years, I have visited Germany forty-five times and this figure is rising all the time. I visit Switzerland for the annual, this year on the 2nd weekend in June, and I’ve many other great events coming up in the next few months. I hope that you have enjoyed this introduction. Meanwhile, I shall be on the ‘Open Road’. See you at an event soon, I hope.
Congratulations to Darts World columnist, and dartsworld.com, contributor John Fowler who has been confirmed as an official for the upcoming World Trophy to be screened on Eurosport.
Speaking to John, before the official announcement, it was clear that he was delighted to be asked but waiting nervously for the official confirmation. Those who have read his MIC DROP column will know that John has gathered a huge amount of experience in darts over the last few years. His enthusiasm for the game is unbounded and he is a strong personality who can carry authority on stage.
The BDO has recruited a new team of officials following the departures of a large percentage of the previous stage team. Paul Booth will offer some experience as the highest-profile recruit.
From running his own small scale knockouts, and hosting exhibitions in local clubs, John progressed to working with most of the biggest names in darts. He has refereed County weekends and overseen many competitions. He has clocked up thousands of miles, travelling within the UK, journeyed all over Europe and the wider world to MC and host events.
It is remarkable that John will reach the top level of his chosen profession within 5 years of deciding to pursue his dream.
John will make his BDO debut at the end of this month, at The Kings Hall in Blackburn. We hope he still has time to share his experience with us at dartsworld.com.
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