Harrogate & District Darts League: Bilton Batsmen win battle of the former champions

Two previous Harrogate & District Darts League champions met in week 15 of the current season, and a titanic struggle ensued.
Round-up of the latest action from the Harrogate & District Darts League. Picture: Catherine Ivill/Getty ImagesRound-up of the latest action from the Harrogate & District Darts League. Picture: Catherine Ivill/Getty Images
Round-up of the latest action from the Harrogate & District Darts League. Picture: Catherine Ivill/Getty Images

In the end, it was Bilton Batsmen who prevailed, defeating Harlow Hill 6-3.

Steve Higgins got the Batsmen off to a positive start, beating Chris Leach 3-0 with 20, 18 and 23-dart legs.

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Lewis Pride produced a consistent display, whitewashing Lee Carey 3-0 with three 23-dart legs to make it 2-0 on the night, before Richard Yates required only 20, 21 and 22 darts to beat Jamie Patterson 3-0 in a showdown which included the first 180 of the night.Adi Shaw then won the first leg and match of the night for Harlow as he beat Lee Swales 3-2, triumphing in 24 darts.

Next, Brian Ellison overcame Tony Sharratt in a classic affair that finally ended 3-2. Ellison came through in 16, 17 and 24 darts, with two 180s despite Sharratt opening in 16 darts.

Alex Pride then came back from 2-0 down to beat Jim Lester 3-2 with 24, 22 and 23-dart legs, putting Bilton back in control at 4-2.

Yates and Higgins teamed up to take their tie against Alex Eadington and Lee Carey 2-0 in 23 and 22 darts, wrapping things up for the Batsmen.

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Leach and Ellison bagged a consolation point for Hill when they ran out 2-0 victors against Nigel Saville and Alex Pride in 18 and 24 darts, before Lewis Pride and Gav Hepstinstall beat Lester and Shaw 2-0 with a 20 dart winning leg.

Elsewhere in Division One, leaders Bilton Working Men's Club Dales thrashed Starbeck Cons Mahoosive 8-1.

Rick Harper beat Paul Kennedy 3-0 with 18 and 19-dart legs to set the high-flyers on their way, though Sam Davey responded immediately to make it 1-1 on the night, seeing off Chris Wood with 25 and 23-dart legs.

Jack Fleming produced 24, 19 and 20-dart legs to edge a close contest with Matty Vincent 3-2, putting Bilton back in front. James Pedel then destroyed Ian Malkin 3-0 with 20, 18 and 16-dart legs to make it 3-1.

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James Hall beat his namesake James Keane 3-0 with legs of 21 and 23, while Pete Newbould kept the 3-0 whitewashes coming, beating Blaine Hobson with 24 and 20-dart legs to end the tie as a contest.In the doubles, Newbould and Pedel beat Malkin and Hobson 2-0 with the help of a 23-dart opener, then Fleming and Hall beat Keane and Kennedy 2-0 with a 23-dart winning leg despite Keane’s 177.

Harper and and Wood completed the rout, edging a 2-1 doubles success against Davey and Vincent.

Trades Hall Vikings recorded a 6-3 success over Manhattan Madhatters.

Phil Taylor squeezed past Paul Monaghan 3-2 with 24, 23 and 19-dart legs to hand the Vikings a winning start despite Monaghan serving up a 19-dart leg which included a 180.

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Harry Kidd came through by the same score-line against Mark McNaughton, aided by a 24-dart leg. Rich Graham then sank Danny Gamble, triumphing by a 3-1 score-line despite Gamble's 20-dart leg as Graham hit two 23-dart legs.

Pop Herron got the Madhatters up and running, whitewashing Mal Taylor with 24 and 20-dart legs, before Micheal Prisk bagged a 3-1 win over Chris Nelson, opening in 21 darts, to narrow the Trades Hall lead to 3-2 despite a late 180 by Nelson in the final leg.

Ryan Blanchard then cruised to a 3-0 victory over Stewart Pyke, rounding things off with a 20-dart final leg, which squared things up at 3-3 on the night.

The doubles matches would however all go the way of the Vikings. Kidd and Taylor won 2-0 against Herron and Blanchard with a 19-dart final leg.

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Stewart Pyke and Steve Townsend then beat Prisk and Steve Robinson 2-1 to settle the tie before a 2-1 victory for Graham and Nelson over Monaghan and Dan Knowles provided the gloss.

In Division Two, Bilton Umpires were another side to win by a 6-3 score-line, beating Manhattan School of Darts 6-3.

Manhattan got off to a flying start as Douglas Sneesby opened up proceedings with a 2-1 win over Jamie Saville. Jono Bradley then followed that result up with a 2-0 win against Rob Ryder.But, the Umpires rallied, taking the next four singles ties as Luke Saville beat Christian Macintyre 2-1 and Ken Glew overcame Robbie Blair 2-0 in an attritional contest.

Dion Glew was then a 2-0 victor over Mick Butterfield, producing a 24-dart winning leg, while Andy Darling ruthlessly dispatched Natasha Norcliffe 2-0 with 21 and 22-dart legs.In the doubles, Norcliffe teamed up with Butterfield to beat Ian Richardson and Geoff Gillingwater, keeping the tie alive.

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But any hope of a Manhattan comeback was snuffed out by the Glew family as they sank Sneesby and Blair in 31 darts for a leg of 701.

Saville and Darling then beat Bradley and McIntyre in the final tie of the evening to wrap upPrince Of Wales edged out Starbeck Cons 5-4 in a fiercely-contested local derby clash.

Jayson Duck beat Simon Hoare 2-1 to move Prince into the ascendancy, with Shaun Smith following up with a 2-0 win over Tony Hawkes.

Starbeck's Dennis Wise then came from behind to beat Andrew Graham 2-1, halving the deficit on the night.James Marriott triumphed 2-0 against Darren Metcalfe to equalise for the Cons, with Al Roberts then beating Gary Whelans 2-1 after a 20-dart opening leg, turning the contest on its head.

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Prince's Lorna Nelson would however come through in what was a real test of endurance, against Andrew Parkes to make it 3-3 on the night.

In the doubles, Duck and Smith beat Wise and Graham to put Prince back ahead, before the match was decided by Nelson and Whelans, who hit a 180 as they got the better of Hawkes and Roberts.

Starbeck then bagged a consolation point when Marriott and Hoare sank Parkes and Metcalfe.