The Snapshot Review: Unicorn Gripper 6. The Beresford Barrel.

Not many amateur players are asked to produce their own barrel design by a major manufacturer. Fewer still see that design released onto the market and be available for general sale. Darts World contributor Tom Beresford is one of that select group.

Tom’s design was modelled on two of his favourite players, Joe Cullen and Krzysztof Kcuik and their distinctive barrels.

  • Product: Darts (Steel Tip)
  • Brand: Unicorn
  • Model: Gripper
  • Tungsten: 90%
  • Edition: 22g
  • Price: 35-60

Overview and First Impressions:

The barrels were originally marketed with Tom’s name and previous logo associated with them but are also part of the extensive ‘Gripper’ range. The ‘Beresford Barrel’ is the 22g version. The dimensions are relatively conventional at 45mm x 7mm, but its the grip sections that make the dart stand out. The dart has the same basic shape as the Cullen arrow but the front grip section is far more aggressive and has more in common with Kcuik’s Weapon of Choice’.

Open the Box:

  • One set of 3 90% Tungsten Barrels – Unicorn engraved.
  • One set of 3 Gripper Zero Degree’s Shafts
  • One set of 3 Gripper Flights
  • One set of 3 Finger Grip Points (Fitted)

These combinations of grip patterns give the dart a direct and aggressive look and feel. The slightly shorter, than Joe’s, dimensions are good for those who might describe themselves as ‘a bit wristy’. At 90% tungsten, they are a high-quality dart that will be long-lasting.

The price tag varies between 35 – 60 and is quite high for a ‘range dart’, best value can be obtained by hunting online. The finger grip points, supplied, are a nice touch and give the player a variety of options and ways for the dart to feel secure.

Test Results:

The testers found that both middle and rear grip players could get good performance from the dart. No front gripping player appeared comfortable.

“It took a while to really get the best from these, but they grew on me…..”

All the testers found the dart appealing and were eager to try them. The concept of a hybrid dart appealed to some who thought it may solve their personal needs.

Unicorn Gripper 90% Tungsten Darts 20g Designed With Tom Beresford
A180 still feature Tom’s logo as well as the Gripper branding. click to buy

Counterintuitively it was the players with the lightest grip who found the Gripper easiest to adapt too. They liked that they could feel it in their hand without having to actually ‘grip it’. The supplied set up is a very good place to start and the supplied accessories and spares are handy. However, a ‘Rockstar’ set up was very effective!

Downsides:

The split-grip proved awkward for more than one of our testing group. Those who persevered managed to find a manageable grip but it was not an easy task. However, more than one simply could not use the dart functionally.

Cullen himself simply said he had tried them

“but they were not for me”

Marks: 8/10

Overall this dart got 8/10. One tester marked very highly and one could not offer a mark. It seems that it could be thought of a marmite dart! An improving player in need of more grip may get on well with these if their technique suits.

SnapShot:

A highly specialised dart, popular with some testers and throw styles. Durable and interesting as well as superbly engineered and manufactured. A highly individual dart that may suffer from being the combination of two styles rather than a single vision. A definite ‘try before you buy’ dart, not recommended for a beginner who is yet to settle on his/her grip or throw style.


Review and testing carried out by AIM: for an on behalf of Darts World Magazine.

Ando’s World Cup Recap: England Would Have Been Sweeter!

Gary Anderson has been recounting his struggles to get ‘match fit’, and in the groove for doubles, before Scotland tremendous win in the 2019 World Cup of Darts.

This years event has been delayed by Covid-19 and will now take place between November 6-8th. In the meantime the PDC have released a special highlights program with some of the events stars recounting their memories.

Anderson said: “It’s the only time in the year I play pairs and I’ve said that to Peter. Back years ago in the BDO you always played pairs, triples, games like that, you were used to it.

“So once a year is bad enough. It’s hard to get into, hard to get into your throw. “When I came back to darts my main target was the Worlds and a floor tournament, that was the first step”

“I think I had played in one or two ProTours prior to the World Cup, I was struggling”.

“Once we got across there, you know what you’ve got to do.

“Unfortunately we never got to play Netherlands or England because that would have been even sweeter”.

“Even when we started that tournament we kicked off well, I felt we were on it here. It just clicked from there.

“William and Steve had played well the whole tournament. But it was just good to get back.

“It’s not just yourself you are playing for, it’s someone else as well. If you lose a game you’re a bit naff because you are putting all the pressure on your partner. It works both ways.

“It was long overdue. We had lost in two finals to the two teams you couldn’t get harder with the players. We finally did it.

“But Willie and Steve are a pair of good lads. You have a cracking laugh with Willie. 

“I reckon we’ve got a few good years left hopefully. To be 21 again in this day and age would be great. We can still show them the way.


Although the tournament has been moved back to be held from November 6-8, fans can look back on some classic games in the World Cup’s history in PDCTV and at the OfficialPDC YouTube Channel.


Pix: Taylor Lanning

White’s Abuse Antidote!

Darts World have noted an alarming rise in the volume of social media abuse directed at dart players in recent times. However, during his exclusive conversation with Phil Lanning, Stoke’s Ian White revealed his ‘Diamond’ distraction tactics.

Ian White dabs his way past social media diatribes.( Photo : PDC)

Several players, including World Champion Peter Wright and reigning Matchplay winner Rob Cross, have commented in recent weeks that the abuse they recieve has increased and that the nature of it has worsened during LockDown. It seems, sadly, that Ian is not immune:

“A lot of the people who criticise you on social media would love to be in my position”.

‘Diamond White’, as Ian is known, has a somewhat different approach, to the trolls and other miscreants, than the often heard “ignore or block them” type clichés.

“I do read it….. people are entitled to their Opinions,

[But] we’ve got to watch what we Say, being in this spotlight”.

But, as anyone who follows Whitey on twitter will know, he doesn’t remain silent. Rather than respond in kind, or allow such bile to affect him, he offers Attenborough like clips of the wildlife in his garden, comic asides and even his own version of ‘Carpool Karaoke’!

White’s ‘Carpool’ singing and madcap antics seem to provide an insulation from much of the nastier social media abuse.

So I just sing on Twitter instead.

“That’s who I am!”


Ian was talking to Phil Lanning, for Darts World, and will soon be back in action at the Betfred World Matchplay.

Check out his full conversation, his tour posse, and the extent of his ambition here.

Get Well Soon Kyle Anderson – Aussie Original Tests Positive For Covid-19.

Everyone at Darts World and, we are sure, the wider darting community,wishes Australian ace Kyle Anderson a speedy and strong recovery after he tested positive for the Covid-19 virus.

Kyle Anderson Unicorn
Unicorn thrower Kyle Anderson on a better day! (Pic: Unicorn)

The PDC have reported ‘The Original‘s diagnosis following a social media post from his management team:

Kyle Anderson has tested positive for Coronaviris and is now in isolation at home in Australia.

The 32-year-old returned to Australia recently, with play in PDC events having been paused during the current global pandemic.

He was tested whilst at home in Queensland with wife Tara and son Charles, and although not requiring hospital treatment is now in isolation close to his family and following the appropriate medical guidance.

“He is in good spirits but is now back in isolation on his own in a farm house in Mount Morgan,” said manager Mark Elkin, in a statement. “Tara and Charles both tested negative and are both back in the family home.

“It goes without saying that we all wish him a speedy recovery, but it also stresses the need to follow the guidelines set out by the Government. We need to beat this disease together as one.”


Featured Pic: PDC

Source article: PDC.tv

9-Dart Moments – PDC Competition. Name The Nine Dart Hitters?

The PDC are trying to keep us all occupied and interested during these tough times. Here they are giving you a shot at winning a Unicorn Dartboard:

Think you can name every PDC player to have hit a live televised nine-dart finish? 

Simply complete the form below to take part in this week’s competition.

One lucky entrant will be randomly chosen as the winner of a Unicorn HD2 dartboard on Monday, March 30. 

Good luck!

CLICK HERE TO ENTER THE COMPETITION


Hint: Check out the featured pic should give you a couple of starters for ten!

Pic: L Lustig / PDC

Drill Of The Day – Bob’s 27. A Doubling Classic.

If you have been trying, some of the many, new practise drills and games that have been dreamt up, you may be wondering where they came from. SwitchBlade, Middle For Diddle and Sprint (Pro) Half-It were developed by A.I.M:, to assist players they coach,and Kill Bull looks like a Mikko Laiho / Winmau game. Today you can hear, about one of the most famous doubles drills, from the man who invented it!

Bob Anderson Talk’s Through his Bob’s 27 Routine.

Coach’s Comments:

Now I must own up to a bias, Bob is a man after my own heart in many ways. He was also a seriously good player! As important is his understanding of the game and how to improve and or maintain your performance. It is no accident that Bob had a very long Professional career and still plays to a very high standard, in exhibition and competitive matches, aged over 70.

It may also be significant that Bob was one of the first to have a background in a different (athletic) sport. Gerwyn Price has repeated the trick in this era.

Bob’s first point is one of my favourite rules. Have an aim to your practice, don’t just throw aimlessly at the twenties etc. Bobs next tip is to focus heavily on finishing and hitting that double, his ‘Bob’s 27’ is legendary. Watch it through and give it a few goes. This sets your benchmark and then you should add it to your daily routine. Many players use it as part of their early session or near the start of a longer one.

If you want evidence of how this improves your game check out Bob’s efforts in the 1986 World Masters:

The Limestone Cowboy was as good as they come and, in spells, was outstanding! 151,120,150 & 154! Not often you see that even today. These were hit under serious pressure, on a round wired board, in a major tournament and in quick succession.

So if you want to improve your doubles/finishing listen to Bob Anderson!


This is what ‘Coach’ calls a development (or reset) drill. While high level players will play it as a warm up or settling routine, shorter sharper drills can be better for those at the top. Bob’s 27 gives equal focus to every double, great when your developing, whereas sometimes a sharper focus on those that are used most often is more beneficial.

Darts World will show you a few of these over the coming days and weeks.


More ‘Razmatazz’ at Unicorn? Madars Extends Deal.

Unicorn continue to consolidate their team of sponsored players with another extension. It has seemed to us for a while that they are trying to build a very solid base, especially of younger or non UK players, whilst keeping their elite team in place.

The latest extension is detailed below:

Latvian star Madars Razma has extended his contract with Unicorn Darts.

Razma, aged 31, regained his PDC Tour Card at European Q-School in January 2019 with a run to the final on the third day, which saw him finish first on the Order of Merit, giving him at least another two years on the PDC Pro Tour. 

Along with his full-time commitment to the PDC Tour, Razma remains a mainstay on the PDC Nordic & Baltic Tour and via that route after topping the Order of Merit, he earned a prized spot at last years World Championship, where he was just edged by Team Unicorn stablemate Harry Ward in a second round thriller.

Razma is pleased to extend his stay with Unicorn ”I am very happy to be part of this great team since 2014. It is a huge boost for me to have the fantastic support and I’d like to thank everyone for their continued belief. We will continue the fight together”.

Player Liaison Manager Matt Rankin added ”We really admire Madars and his all-round positive attitude towards the game of darts in general. He is fully committed to playing in as many events as possible and he is a fantastic global ambassador for our brand. He is a pleasure to work with”.

‘Razmatazz’ has risen to 69th place on the main PDC Order of Merit and now has his sights set on another appearance at Alexandra Palace later this year after securing double qualification for two future European Tour events last week in Barnsley. His quest is well underway!.


Originally Posted in Unicorn Darts By Unicorn Darts News

De Zwann Extends Deal As Unicorn Consolidate.

Ahead of the Ladbrokes UK Open which gets underway in Minehead later today, young Dutch star Jeffrey de Zwaan has penned a new long-term contract with Unicorn Darts.  

Pictured: top left: L-R. Unicorn Production Director Lee Parker, JDZ Manager Ben de Kok, Jeffrey de Zwaan & Player Liaison Manager Matt Rankin.

Rising star de Zwaan who turns 24 at the end of this month, is tipped by many to make his way to the very top of the game and has already climbed upto World no.20 in just over two years after regaining his PDC Tour card at European Q-School.

JDZ showcased his undoubted potential during the recent World Championship at Alexandra Palace averaging a blistering 106.09 whilst defeating Dave Chisnall and then narrowly losing out to eventual World Champion Peter Wright 4-3 in the Last 16, after battling back valiantly from three sets to nil down.

The talented Dutchman who has become a regular in TV events, will once again play a part in this year’s Premier League as a ‘Challenger’ on his home soil at Rotterdam Ahoy, where he will look to gain revenge over Wright for that World Championship defeat.

Claiming a maiden PDC European Tour title is at the forefront of de Zwaan’s mind, whilst he has his sights set on a place in the World’s Top 16 and is also striving for a coverted place in the Netherlands World Cup of Darts team come June in Hamburg. He certainly has the ability and belief to do just that.

De Zwaan has made solid progress over the last couple of years.

De Zwaan is delighted with the new deal ‘’I am honoured to sign a new contract with Unicorn. To be a part of such a big family company gives me a great feeling especially with the full support and backing they always give me. I am very excited for the future’’.

Player Liaison Manager Matt Rankin added “Spending time with Jeffrey and his management team in Holland earlier this week was an absolute pleasure and to conclude a deal which sees him remain with Unicorn for years to come, really is great news. JDZ is a supreme talent”.

Along with the new contract, Jeffrey will be promoted within Team Unicorn to our Maestro selection of players, where he will join Ian White, Joe Cullen & Seigo Asada. The promotion will fall in line with our 2021 range launch later this year, where a new portfolio of Jeffrey de Zwaan products will be released for sale.


Originally posted in Unicorn Darts By Unicorn Darts News

Pic: L Lustig/PDC

Old Stoneface Gets The Special Edition Treatment!

Two for One? Lowe Classic & Phase 2.

One of the noticible things in the darts industry over recent years has been the growth of the special or collectors editions sets. Often they are simply a variation on the players current dart or specially packaged, souvenir type, product to mark an occasion or achievement. However, Unicorn have just released a unique pack. Not one but two sets of darts marking the remarkable career of John Lowe!

A Moment Of Darting History

In 1984 John Lowe MBE became the first person to achieve a 9-dart finish on television, in a match against Keith Deller at the 1984 World Matchplay. John hit two 180s with his first six darts, before finishing on 141 with treble 17, treble 18 and double 18 to complete the perfect leg. With this feat, John earned himself a place in darting immortality, as well as £102,000.

The John Lowe MBE Limited Edition darts are presented in deluxe packaging and come complete with two sets of darts, the first of which is a Limited Edition Replica of the dart John used to throw the perfect leg. His Phase 1 barrels are 90% natural tungsten, with Limited Edition 9 Dart engraving. The shaft and flights are a modern replica of those used on that famous day, a Silver Moulded SlikStik shaft and ULTRAFLY Rainbow Blue flights in Xtra shape.

2019 New Year’s Honours

Lowe receives his MBE from Prince William.

On the 2nd May 2019, the three-time World Champion was awarded an MBE by Prince William, the Duke of Cambridge, for services to the sport of darts and Charity at Buckingham Palace. John’s incredible career spanned across four decades of darting excellence, in which he became the first man to win three World Championship Titles across three decades, defeating Leighton Rees in 1979, Eric Bristow in 1987 and Alan Warriner in 1993.

The Phase 2 set of darts include a Limited Edition replica of the dart John used when he received his MBE. The 90% tungsten dart with gold titanium coating and Limited Edition MBE engraving also includes Gold Premier Aluminium Shafts and Gold John Lowe MBE ULTRAFLY flights in Plus shape.

The classic barrel with a 1984 set up.

In total there are just 501 sets of the John Lowe Limited Edition Set, spread across the three weights, meaning there are just 167 Sets each of 21G, 23G and 25G available. Available only from Unicorn at www.playwiththebest.com or from John Lowe MBE himself.

Each John Lowe MBE Limited Edition Box Contains-

  • Deluxe John Lowe MBE Packaging
  • 2 Sets of Limited Edition John Lowe Darts – 1 x Set of Phase 1 Natural John Lowe Darts and 1 x Set of Phase 2 Gold John Lowe Darts
  • Limited Edition Engraving
  • ULTRAFLY Flights
  • SlikStik and Aluminium Shafts

Full product and purchase details available here: http://www.playwiththebest.com/john-lowe-mbe-9-dart-special.html