The sun was shining on this lovely Bank Holiday Monday but we still had a good turnout for the darts, including James who was still recovering from the previous day's Sunday Football League Cup Final in which he represented the Royal Standard FC. Darren didn't manage to conquer his hangover and come out but we were joined by Mark, who had competed in previous knockouts.
John 2-0 Sam
Getting us under way were John and Sam. Sam was hampered by an injured left wrist and had to rely on John to hold her darts during her throw. This affected her throwing rhythm and she didn't have her usual consistency. John didn't give any chances and powered ahead in the scoring (three ton-plus scores back-to-back in one leg), winning both legs easily.
Ram 1-2 Mark
Mark looked very composed as he took on the experienced Ram and with good reason as he took the first leg and appeared to be set for the second, but discount Ram at your peril as he came back to level on 1-all. The deciding leg went Mark's way as Ram dropped behind in the scoring, taking the pressure off Mark as he checked out.
Anne 1-2 Tom
Anne took the first leg after building up a lead on the scoreboard followed by a good checkout but trouble on her double in the second leg allowed Tom to catch up and even the scores. Anne had the advantage again in the deciding leg but couldn't capitalise on it as the double again proved elusive, and Tom checked out to go through.
Ben 2-1 James
James wasn't on his usual form and this match was a close one. Some uncharacteristic accuracy on his doubles gave Ben the edge he needed in two of the legs to go through.
John 2-0 Mark
In a match that saw probably the best darts of the night both players started well, hitting good scores in a close first leg. Mark had the advantage of first throw, but although he reached a finish he failed to nail it and John checked out with his next throw. John had the darts in the second leg and continued to score well, while Mark slipped a couple of times and fell behind. John didn't leave any chances as he sealed the victory with a quick checkout to go through to the final.
Tom 0-2 Ben
Ben tightened up his throw to gain a decisive advantage in scoring, and although Tom kept steadily on, even hitting two bullseyes with one throw, it wasn't enough and Ben went through.
John 2-0 Ben
It might have been tiredness, but John didn't find the consistency he showed in his earlier matches, and his scoring average was down which left Ben in with a chance. Both players had a bit of double trouble in the first leg, throwing repeatedly to checkout and it was John who hit the target first to go ahead. Ben had the darts in the second leg and hit a couple of good scores to take the lead, but he couldn't capitalise on it, allowing John to come back while he failed to find the last double. John took the second leg to win the competition and £10 in prize money; Ben received the consolation of £5 for the runner-up.
The League returns next week and it's Round 4, the half-way point. Don't forget that league fixtures are now on Tuesday nights to avoid clashing with pool matches. The fixtures for Tuesday 14th May are:
Ben v James
John v Darren
Ram v Anne
Sam v Tom