Saturday, April 20, 2024

Bajan darts players nail it


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Blue, yellow and black. Put it up!

 That’s just what Barbados’ darts players did Saturday night to highlight the month of independence, and keep the ultramarine and gold flying high at the BrydenStokes Barbados Darts Festival.

After a below par performance on the opening day, the Bajan darts players rose to the occasion at the Barbados Workers Union’s Solidarity House headquarters, to take two titles outright and reach the final in the third tournament.

Pride of place must go to the team of Roger Edwards, Clyde Murrell and Elouise Martin in the Vita Malt Mixed Triples. In the final they faced the formidable line-up of Brits Peter Ward, John Downs and Shereen Downs who are all previous titleholders at the festival.

The first game came down to hitting that crucial double to finish. That pressure fell on the shoulders of Elouise Martin, who after two previous low scores, remained undaunted, stepping up to the oche and planted her very first dart into double 20 to take the game.

The British trio tied up the match by winning the second game and in the decider it was Clyde Murrell who rose to the occasion. Peter Ward had had a chance to take the match but just missed double 18 with his last dart.

Murrell, knowing full well that the Brits would hit their double when they returned to the board, and having earlier hit a maximum 180, needed to check out with a difficult score of 97.  

To rising excitement he hit singe 9, triple 18 and then double 12 to raucous applause in the Sir Hugh Springer Auditorium.

In the Anchor Mixed Nations Women’s Pairs it was the team of veteran Maureen Shepherd and “rookie” Canadaian Shelby Bruchett who convincingly defeated the Bajan/Brit team of Cheryl Walrond and Maxine Cadwalleder.

In the Anchor Mixed Nations Men’s Pairs a new Bajan darts talent was revealed in the shape of twenty four year old Caleb Clarke. A member of the Ravens Club, Clarke has only been playing darts for two years yet he was not overawed in the semi-final clash against the top seeds Alan Collins and Anthony Forde.

Playing with Canadian Ron Lynk, Clarke did not buckle under pressure in the vital deciding game and was able to deliver the scoring pattern outlined by his more experienced partner. It provided Lynk with the opportunity to snatch the match with a brilliant three dart check out.

In the final they faced the vastly experienced and highly talented Guyanese/Brit duo of Sudesh Fitzgerald and John Downs. Fitzgerald, who had earned the right to play at the Professional World Darts Championships in London six years ago, had shown throughout the tournament that he was playing better than ever.

Together their consistently high scoring every time they were at the oche and their ability to hit doubles at will, left their opponents with precious few chances to take the initiative and they deservedly took the title 3-0. 


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