Ranking events resume

By Editorial Staff 08/06/2021

WDF ranking events kicked off again this weekend, after an interval of 449 days, with the Canterbury Open in New Zealand, titles were captured by Landon Gardiner and Judy Fenton.

Gardiner claimed the men’s singles after coming through a field of 94, including  2019 WDF World Cup winner Darren Herewini, 

Mike Warburton’s win at the Isle of Man Open, back in March 2020, brought to a close the ability of such events to be played and many will be delighted to see the restart of the path to the recently announced WDF majors.

After taking wins over Alan Martin, Craig Caldwell and John Proctor, Gardiner scraped through the quarter-finals against Mike Keen closing out a tough win 4-3. A straightforward win against Tukina Weko (5-0), ensured he would face Craig Ross in the final.

Ross had been on an impressive run in the other half of the draw, whitewashing  Hayden Wickett, Craig Brown and Puha before an altogether tougher affair in the semi-final. Last year's last 16 man Bennett Jones put up a superb fight and was only narrowly edged out in the deciding leg.

Local boy Gardiner produced a fine performance in the final and ran out a convincing winner. The win assures Gardiner  a place at the inaugural WDF World Masters, set to take place this December and the WDF World Championship play-offs.

A special mention for Warren Parry, who pipped 4-3 by Jones in the last eight after knocking out Herewini in the previous round. Parry is now 57 and still a force to be reckoned with. To put his effort in context we should remember that Warren reached the final of the WDF World Cup in the closing year of the last century!

Herewini will need to regroup of being very unfortunate in having his opportunities as World Cup singles winner curtailed severely by Covid.

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The Ladies event also carried ranking points and a place in the World Masters and saw Judy Fenton picked up another title defeating Tara Mears in the final. Wendy Harper did Fenton a service by defeating defending champion Tina Osborne (3-0) in the quarter-finals

Mears had recorded victories over Nicole Regnaud,  former winner Jane Harrington and Kayla Hitch but couldn't find the key to getting past vastly experienced Fenton (5-3).

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