West Midlands Salvage Draw at Cleveland

Red Dragon Darts

With one win and one defeat in the Andy Wheeler Fisheries Championship Division of the UKDA National League West Midlands were hoping for a second win in their away game at Cleveland to lift them up the table and away from the relegation zone but the weekend didn’t have the best of starts as the ladies ‘B’ slumped to their third consecutive defeat.

The game was won by the hosts before West Midlands got a stripe on the board as Dawn Winn, Vanessa Dickinson, Shirley Witten and Leanne Witten in turn won against Debbie Davies (3-0), Sarah Maybury (3-0), Crysta Wilcox (3-2) and Jodie Rowlands (3-2).

Shellbie Simmons was West Midlands one and only winner as in the penultimate encounter she beat Jessica Fredericks 3-2 to take the match award with her 15.70 average. The final game went to Cleveland when Mia Simmonds beat Jacqueline Simmons 3-0 to give a final score of 5-1 to the home team.

The men’s ‘B’ had a far more favourable result as they won all six of the first half games. Ryan Locker got the proceedings underway with a 4-1 win over Mick Costello, Chris Stanley doubling the visitors lead with a 4-1 success over Liam Green-Sherlock. There were 4-2 wins for Paul Price and Jack Aldridge as in turn they defeated Adam Cope and Graham Palmer before West Midlands man of the match Ryan O’Connor beat Jamie Owens 4-3 to clinch the award with his 28.40 average.

As the second half began Cleveland chalked up their first winner in the shape of John Purdy who beat Luke Griffiths 4-0 and with a 4-2 win for David Coverdale over Adam Teasdale the home team were back in the game but still trailing 6-2.

Kieran O’Mahoney put the game beyond Cleveland’s reach when he added the magical seventh win defeating Martin Bulman 4-2 before Cleveland got their third winner, this time it was a 4-1 success for their Cameron Nicholson over Karl Hughes. However that was to be the home team’s last winner as Alex Simmons beat Garath Hayes 4-3 and Ian Stanton took the final score to 9-3 for the West Midlands men’s ‘B’ with his 4-2 win over Steven Wilkinson.   

The ladies ‘A’ like their ‘B’ side had lost their previous two games 4-2 and were looking for their first win of the campaign, but it was not to be as again like their ‘B’ side they also lost 5-1. The home team stormed into a 5-0 lead thanks to their Ann Marie Potts, Amy Thomas, Sam Dixon, Carla Boyes and Claire Stamper who defeated respective opponents Claire Hobbs (3-0), Tara Simmons-Fullwood (3-2), Jodie Rowlands (3-2), Katherine Jenkins (3-1) and Gemma Barrett (3-0), Claire Stamper taking the hosts match award for her super 24.64 average. The West Midlands match award went to anchor player Jacqueline Maiden who was their sole winner when she won 3-2 against Frances Elwick with a 16.13 average.

Trailing overall 13-11 the West Midlands required a second win in a row from the men’s ‘A’ to get anything out of the game but it was looking a little bleak as they began the game with two losses, Michael Baker losing 4-2 to Lewis Whitehead and Gavin Baker going down 4-3 to Dave Hunter. West Midlands long standing veteran Ian Jones stopped the rot when he beat Chris Sheraton 4-2 only to see Cleveland’s two games buffer restored in the fourth when Rob Grundy won 4-2 against Dean Simmons-Fullwood. Nevertheless by the midway point it was level-pegging at 3-3 as Richard Platt won 4-0 against Barry Davies and Darren Williams beat John Watson 4-1.

The second half began as did the first with the home side winning the opening two games, Geoffrey Burdon and Kevin Naunton both winning 4-0 in turn against Ash Khayat and Kevin Bambrick. On this occasion it took a man of the match performance from Rob Thompson to put a halt to the Cleveland charge as he won 4-1 against Ray Hutchinson with a tremendous 32.00 average.

As if inspired by Thompson’s win the last three players for the West Midlands Ben Johnson, Owen Maiden and Shaun Carroll in turn won against Mark Muckian (4-2), Paul Allen (4-0) and Brian Henderson (4-3) to give the away side a 7-5 victory and take the final overall score to an 18-18 draw.


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