Dutch Open Diary: Greaves & Bottenberg Triumph

Red Dragon Darts

SUNDAY at the Dutch Open means finals day for our continental contributor:

After checking out at the hotel, I rushed towards the Bonte Wever as the youth events were already underway!

The girls event we had a brutal last 16 game between Paige Pauling and Mahi Bosmia, the burgeoning Indian talent I had followed on Saturday.

Pauling rushed to a 3-0 victory as Mahi Bosmia couldn’t find the darts she could on Saturday. It was brilliant to meet her though, hopefully we will see more of the international players next year!

There were few surprises in the youth events although Sophie McKinlay did lose her semifinal to Kira Mertens, leaving the German girl to play Pauling in the final on the big stage. The newly selected England International won 3-0 to add just another title to her already impressive collection.

In the boys event, title favourite Kendji Steinbach went out early as did German talent Yorick Hofkens. There was also a younger boys event which had a final between a player from Finland and another Hungary.

The finish boy Pennanen seemed really enjoyed himself on the big stage but it was the cool Hungarian Bálazs Szótak who won the title.

In the older boys final we saw last year’s boys under 14 winner Ruben Baalmans who had a superb sweet caroline walk-on to get the crowd going. His opponent was Cor Beukema, who beat Steinbach earlier on.

Both boys threw lots of trebles and ot appears the future of Dutch darts is in a very good place for at least another generation!

It was Baalmans who used his experience from last year to get over the line. The 14 – year-old then told me he started to play darts only 2,5 years ago! That is pretty insane as he has already won 2 Dutch Open youth titles!

The number 2 of the Dutch boys rankings also said he didn’t had winning the rankings as a goal. The other boys are so good he said, so he is happy with a top 4 place in the end.

At the men event we had some great ties in the L128. Mareno Michels beat one of the favourites in Challenge Tour number one Danny Jansen. Bram van Dijk edged out Vincent Kamphuis 4-3, while we lost other former tourcard holders in Yordi Meeuwisse and Damian Mol as well.

Mike van Duivenbode knocked out last year’s quarterfinalist Dennie Olde Kalter and Jerry Hendriks beat the last man standing from the UK in Dafydd Edwards.
In the L64 we saw a few surprises.

Former quarterfinalist Johan van Velzen went out losing 1-4 to Davyd Venken, while we also lost Dutchman Patrick Maat and Belgium’s Jeroen Caron. In the L32, Mareno Michels lost 1-4 to Thomas Junghans, as Carlo van Peer (brother of last year’s winner Berry) lost 1-4 to 19 year old German Sascha Stuhlemmer.

Top seed and World Master Wesley Plaisier saw off Vincent van der Meer, and Christian Kist beat Boys World Champion Bradley van der Velden, who had a great run in this men event at the age of just 16.

In the L16 Switzerland’s Junghans surprisingly lost to Jeremy Derksen, as Arjan Konterman edged out Van Duivenbode in a decider, whilst 19-year-old Stuhlemmer continued to impress as he averaged 95,6 in a win over Jerry Hendriks.

We then went on to the quarterfinals on the main stage, and started with World Master Plaisier who beat Bram van Dijk 5-2. Stuhlemmer then made his big stage debut, in his first ever WDF ranked quarterfinal, facing former World Champion Christian Kist and against the hone nation crowd.

Stuhlemmer came with arguably the most impressive performance of the weekend (that is including a 121 average from Plaisier) as against the crowd, facing a World Champion in his first big stage game, he won 5-4 with an 87 average.

Jarno Bottenberg then beat his good friend Konterman 5-2 and Jeremy Derksen, a player nobody had heard of before, beat Sybren Gijbels 5-1 to complete the semifinal line-up.

In the semi’s, Plaisier was too strong for Stuhlemmer and beat the young German 2-0 in sets. Bottenberg then also beat Derksen in straight sets to set up a final against Plaisier!

Before that we had the pairs finals. Beau Greaves and Jo Rolls faced Lorraine Winstanley and Paige Pauling. Greaves once again did what she had to do, and even while Rolls played her biggest ever game she still played better than she had all day on Saturday.

That resulted in a convincing win for Greaves and Rolls, as Jo Rolls had the biggest win of her career!

In the men’s final Jimmy van Schie and Jeroen Mioch were absolutely destroyed by Damian Mol and Brian Raman, or mainly by Damian Mol as he averaged over 106 in the match.

Mol and Raman were very happy when I talked to them and their chemistry was great, which was probably one of the things that lfted them to the win!

A repeat of last year’s ladies final in Aileen de Graaf vs Beau Greaves wasn’t as good as expected. De Graaf did not really turn up as Greaves took the title away from her, and got a 5-1 revenge.

After her second Dutch Open win she also shared some breaking news with me, as she will be playing Development Tour events this year.

Finally, after an exhausting but superb weekend it was time for the last game. Wesley Plaisier against Jarno Bottenberg and it was a very enjoyable game. Plaisier had a 1-0 lead then Bottenberg made it 2-1 by hitting an 89-finish on the bullseye! Plaisier came back and we went into a deciding set.

There, Bottenberg was on 131 for the title and he hit T17, D20, D20!!! A monstrous finish to win the biggest tournament in the world that is astonishing.

Bottenberg also qualified for his second Lakeside now, and told me it will be Challenge Tour, Development Tour and some WDF in preparation for that now this year.

I think Modus might be looking to invite him back now as well!

What an event that was. A lot of deserved winners, a lot of nice people who I have met as always and last but not least: a massive thank you and well done to the NDB and WDF for organizing this event so well as always.

Over 6000 entries, but everything went very smooth and all games were on dartconnect. I genuinely think the NDB are better at organizing a darts event than any other organization on this planet!


Words and Images: Wim Blokpoel

Grab the current print Issue 584 here  or a 50th Anniversary Darts World bundle 581 here 

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