Hampshire darts snatch draw from the jaws of victory

First published in Other Sport

Hampshire’s county darts hopes were dealt a massive blow in their home game with Surrey in Fareham as they blew a six point lead.

They got off to a great start with the Ladies B winning 4-2 which included Sam Pike beating Tania Blake 3-2 in the fifth leg decider.

The Men’s B continued the winning streak with a 7-5 win over Surrey B but unfortunately lost four matches from the first six where Stephen West, Andy Mitchell, Brad Hatch and Andover’s Richie Ford had an off day missing vital doubles.

Richie scored quite well overall but lost his match 3-2 in another five leg decider to Mark Budd. With Hampshire still in front by two they fought back by taking the next five matches out of seven with Andover’s adopted godson Sam Rooney Phil McDonnell 3-0.

Mark Thorne played his part this month after missing the last match at County Durham with a 3-0 win over James Kent and Thorne also collected man of the match for the second time this season as Hampshire were four in front overnight on Saturday , Sunday Morning was looking very bright after the Ladies A got off to a fantastic start winning 4-2.

Tara Power played superbly beating Sarah Emsley 3-0 and Sue Lowther also had a great game beating Sharon Cullip 3-1 Wendy Reinstadtler narrowly lost 3-2 to England international Tricia Wright and Gemma Hayter won comfortably 3-0 over Aplee Jones but it was Hampshire’s Jane Monaghan who got Lady A player of the match and weekend not only collecting her trophy but also winning £50 for her efforts against Sue Shefford.

So Hampshire were in a commanding lead of six going into the Men’s A matches only to win two from the first six which included Portsmouth’s Martin Stead beating Paul Wenham which was a fantastic match to watch.

Alton’s Ian Jopling played well again with another final leg decider against the brilliant Graham Hollis but Hampshire then lost four out of the next five to allow Surrey to pull back and receive a draw.

Men’s A man of the match and the £100 went to the Welsh international and Hampshire’s Mike Gillet with a fantastic 28.60 average and a 4-1 win over Tony Hammond to claim a draw 18 points each and a bonus point.

Hampshire’s next match is on the last weekend in May away to Staffordshire.

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