CHAMPIONSHIP PROMOTION HOTS UP AS BIG NAMES TRY KEEPING THEIR HEAD ABOVE WATER IN THE PREMIER LEAGUE. LATEST NEWS FROM ADC’S SUMMER LEAGUE.
Only two wins separate the bottom of the premier league from the three players tied in the fifth spot as some big names sink into the relegation zone. Two players in the drop zone Chris Burton and Trevor Honnor are still in search of their first win of the season as neither player could take advantage in their match as Honnor led 2-1 before Burton took out a great 94 to seal the draw. Burton started the night with a 3-1 defeat to current leader Andrew Mcdermott while Honnor hit a 180 in the last leg to save himself a draw in his contest with, draw specialist, Arnie Quinn. This was Quinns sixth draw in eight matches leaving him in search of his first win of the season also as he ended the night with a heavy 4-0 loss to third spot Drew Tweedy, a perfect night for Tweedy who hit a fantastic 160 outshot and fifteen dart leg in his 3-1 win over Simon Churchill.
The top two are slowly pulling away from the rest of the league as they opened up a five-point gap between themselves and third spot. Playing one more game on the night than leader Mcdermott Danny Aplin took advantage by claiming two wins and gaining a draw in his final match, with his 3-1 victory over Burton Mcdermott came from behind to claim another 3-1 win this time over Mark Samways. Samways started his night off hitting a 122 outshot on the bull and the lead against Aplin before the latter came back strong and took the next three legs and the win. A 4-0 win for Aplin over Churchill in his second match meant anything other than a loss in his final match would see Aplin go back top. Trailing 2-1 to Mel Burton Aplin hit a fifteen dart leg to claim the draw and return to the top of the summit. Brothers Mel and Chris Burton shared the points in their match as Mel had to hit a sixteen dart last leg to save the draw.
Like the battle at the bottom of the Premier League. the top of the championship is hotting up as three points separate Shaun Lampard at the top and Paul Paice in fifth. Lampard regained the lead off of Nige Davis who had a night to forgot losing both his matches 3-1 to Paice and Terry Tucker respectively. Tucker who’s only two points off promotion with two games in hand still on the players above him hit a 100 outshot in his victory over Davis before going one better as he hit a 130 outshot in his 3-1 win over Billy Short. Lampard returned to the top of the table with an opening 4-0 whitewash of Matty Betts before coming from behind to claim a 3-1 win over winless Scotty Gannon. Simon Sharpe was the big mover on the night as he moved above last weeks leader Davis and into second place with an opening 4-0 win over Betts which then was followed by a 2-2 draw with Billy Short. A draw for Short was enough to keep him in the fourth spot and above Paul Paice on leg difference. Paice’s 2-2 draw with Tucker and win versus Davis was either side of another 3-1 success over Bazza Stratford. Both players scored consistently well in the match but it was Paice’s clinical finishing that saw him over the line and within touching distance of the promotion slots.
It was a disappointing night for Stratford as he opened up the evening with a 3-1 defeat to young buck Eddie Knell. Knell came agonisingly close to sinking the BIG FISH 170 checkout as he wired the bull to win the match before returning to the oche and taking out 25 first time of asking. At the beginning of the night, LLoyd Honnor sat rock bottom of the league with only one leg to his name. LLoyd had a fantastic night and moved off the bottom as he claimed his first win of the season. His 3-1 victory came in his match with Gannon. Despite scoring well Gannon just couldn’t hit that all important double letting Honnor in to claim his first victory of the season. That first win was very nearly followed by his second win in his very next match as he led Knell 2-1 and started the fourth leg 140,140 before being pegged back by the youngster. Eventually, it was Knell who sank the all-important double and claim a point leaving him quietly pushing for a promotion spot.
Credit – Danny Aplin with additional editorial input from dartsworld.com