Warwickshire v Glamorgan

Warwickshire’s final Premier Division game in the BDO Inter County Championships was a rearranged home fixture against Glamorgan, a game they lost 20-16 playing away last season and the latest one didn’t have the best of starts.

Opener for the ladies ‘B’ was Chloe McKivett who was quick to open up a 2-0 lead over Sue Powell before Powell won the third leg, however this turned out to be just a minor setback as McKivett then won the fourth leg for not only a 3-1 victory but at the same time she also won the lady of the match award for her 17.71 average.

After such a great start it then went more than a little pear shaped as Glamorgan’s Paula Clemett and Michelle Jones in turn both won 3-1 against Melanie Jones and Helen Rigg. A 3-0 win for Alannah Waters against Donna Pinch in the fourth put the visiting team in an unassailable 3-1 lead and although Warwickshire’s Lisa Deslandes took Sandra Quinn to a deciding leg in the penultimate game it was Quinn who won it to assure the away side of a win.

The final score was taken to 5-1 when in the last game Eve Watson beat Angela Jones 3-0 to hand Warwickshire’s ladies ‘B’ their fourth defeat of the campaign.

The men’s ‘B’ team were in terrific form recording their biggest win of the season which was all started by man of the match Mark Strong when he beat Clayton Williams 4-2 in the opening game. Strong went two up in 14 and 16 darts before Williams pulled one back in the third. Strong re-established his two legs lead in the fourth in 19 darts and although Williams won the fifth the home player with an outstanding 161 checkout in a twelve darts leg won the tie and the match award for his 27.98 average.

Despite Strong’s win the tables were quickly turned as Ray Johnson (Glamorgan) came from 1-0, 2-1 and 3-2 down against Tom McGlone to go on and win 5-3 and Dai Powell who was twice pegged back to level terms by Robert Comben went on to win 4-2 to give Glamorgan a 2-1 advantage.

Parity was restored in the fourth when Ashley Hykin beat Lee Richard 4-1 and even though David Neads added a third win for the visiting team in the fifth when he won 4-2 against Karl Reynolds, who had a better average than his victor, the score at the break was all square at 3-3 after Ian Shaw added his 4-1 win over Chris Thomas to the home team’s tally.

The second half began as did the first with a win for Warwickshire as Jack Wareing handed out a straight 4-0 defeat to James Richards. The eighth game swayed one way then the other as Ron Morgan (Glamorgan) went 1-0 up against Richard Foster, then Foster took a 2-1 lead only to see Morgan win the following two legs to go 3-2 up. Both of the last two legs could easily have gone to either player but it was Richard Foster who was first to find the doubles for a final 4-3 win. Dave Hill had a much more comfortable 4-1 win over Wayne (Sid) Davies and with a 4-2 success for Gareth Braham over Sean Fisher Warwickshire had wrapped up their win as early as the tenth game.

James Hykin (Warwickshire) was taken the full seven legs distance by Paddy Murphy before adding his 4-3 win to the home team’s account and with a 4-2 win for Antony West against Jeff Thomas in the last game of the day Warwickshire men’s ‘B’ won 9-3 to give an overall lead for the day of 10-8.

The ladies ‘A’ began with a fighting performance from Kat Spanswick who clawed her way back from 1-0 and 2-1 down against Sam Bowen to go on and win 3-2. Glamorgan levelled in the second as Nicky Biddick won 3-0 against Marian Conway.

With six match awards from the first eight games of the season Sue Gulliver was on at number three and once again she didn’t disappoint. Sue opened up a 2-0 lead over Rhian O’Sullivan and although O’Sullivan then took the game to a deciding leg, Gulliver with a superb 129 game shot not only won the game 3-2 but also the award for her 23.10 average, her seventh lady of the match award for the nine games season.

Nina Bolt went 1-0 up and then trailed 2-1 to Joanne Pugh, but with wins in the last two legs she won the tie 3-2 to put her team into an unbeatable 3-1 position.

Claire Crocombe reduced the arrears for Glamorgan with a 3-0 win over Caroline Pike in the fifth and looked all set to finish the game all square as Donna Thomas won the opening leg against Wendy Adams, but Adams showed her skill and determination as she went on to win 3-1 to give her team a well-deserved 4-2 victory.

With six wins and one draw the men’s ‘A’ team had only suffered one defeat throughout the season so far and things began well for them as they chalked up wins in the first two games against Glamorgan.

Dean Stewart was first to the oche, playing and winning 4-3 against Wayne Davies who had made Stewart fight all the way after he had taken leads of 1-0, 2-1 and 3-2 before Stewart won the last two legs for his win. Following Stewart was Noel Grant who again was taken the full seven legs distance as he went 2-0 up then 2-2 after his opponent Daniel Thomas won the third and fourth legs. Grant went 3-2 up with an 18 darts leg only to see Thomas level once more in 22 darts. The final leg saw both players finish on 40 but with Grant to throw he took just two darts to seal his win.

Simon Power (Warwickshire) went one up against Dale Hughes but Hughes won the next four legs for Glamorgan’s first win. David Rogers (Glamorgan) won the first leg against Jamie Hughes and despite a spirited performance from Hughes whereby he then went 3-1 up it was Rogers who won the last three legs for a 4-3 win to level the game at 2-2.

Restoring Warwickshire’s lead was Kevin Dowling in the fifth when he began his tie with Graham Brooks with a 15 darts leg and a 106 outshot. In 14 and 21 darts Brooks reversed the advantage but a further three wining legs from Dowling saw him win the game 4-2. By the midway point of the game the score was level at three each after Dai Caller won 4-2 against Mark Carter.

With six games to play Warwickshire needed just two from those six for an overall win but the odds on that happening were reduced as their opponents won the next three games. Jeff Bass won 4-2 against Carl Green, Shaun Dibbs beat Tom Aldridge by the same 4-2 scoreline and with a 4-3 win for Tim Jones over Anthony Allen the away team were 6-3 up.

Stopping the Glamorgan charge was Charlie Symons but he didn’t have it all his own way as his rival Lloyd Browning won the first leg in 13 darts and levelled in the fourth in 17 darts after Symons had won the second and third in 17 and 20 darts. A 14 darts leg saw Symons take the lead for a second time and with a win in the sixth leg Symons clinched a 4-2 victory plus the man of the match award for his 27.13 average.

A 120 game shot in the first leg for Mark Westgarth was not enough to avoid a 4-1 defeat to Clive Langford and although anchor man Nigel Heydon reduced the arrears from 3-0 to 3-2 in his game against Keiron Carter it was Carter who got the 4-2 verdict to take the final score to 8-4 in favour of Glamorgan.

The overall 18-18 draw was enough to see Warwickshire finish fifth in the table equaling last season’s position but with eight points more as they amassed a total of 176 points compared to last season’s 168.

The overall results for the season produced three wins, two draws and four defeats.

Full Results:Warwickshire v Glamorgan (18-18):(Warwickshire names first):Men’s ‘A’:- Dean Stewart 4 Wayne Davies 3, Noel Grant 4 Daniel Thomas 3, Simon Power 1 Dale Hughes 4, Jamie Hughes 3 David Rogers 4, Kevin Dowling 4 Graham Brooks 2, Mark Carter 2 Dai Caller 4, Carl Green 2 Jeff Bass 4, Tom Aldridge 2 Shaun Dibbs 4, Anthony Allen 3 Tim Jones Charlie Symons 4 Lloyd Browning 2, Mark Westgarth 1 Clive Langford 4, Nigel Heydon 2 Keiron Carter 4, Men’s ‘B’:- Mark Strong 4 Clayton Williams 2, Tom McGlone 3 Ray Johnson 4, Robert Comben 2 Dai Powell 4, Ashley Hykin 4 Lee Richards 1, Karl Reynolds 2 David Neads 4, Ian Shaw 4 Chris Thomas 1, Jack Wareing 4 James Richards 0, Richard Foster 4 Ron Morgan 3, Dave Hill 4 Wayne (Sid) Davies 1, Gareth Braham 4 Sean Fisher 2, James Hykin 4 Paddy Murphy 3, Antony West 4 Jeff Thomas 2, Women’s ‘A’:- Kat Spanswick 3 Sam Bowen 2, Marian Conway 0 Nicky Biddick 3, Sue Gulliver 3 Rhian O’Sullivan 2, Nina Bolt 3 Joanne Pugh 2, Caroline Pike 0 Claire Crocombe 3, Wendy Adams 3 Donna Thomas 1, Women’s ‘B’:- Chloe McKivett 3 Sue Powell 1, Melanie Jones 1 Paula Clemett 3, Helen Rigg 1 Michelle Jones 3, Donna Pinch 0 Alannah Waters 3, Lisa Deslandes 2 Sandra Quinn 3, Angela Jones 0 Eve Watson 3.