City teams off to a good start in Devon super league
SIX of the seven Plymouth sides were all victorious on the opening night of the new Devon County super league campaign, including reigning champions Maritime, who began the defence of their premier division title with a 6-3 win against Racehorse (Tiverton).
New skipper Danny Allen (23.72) opened their account with a 4-1 win, taking the last leg in 18 with a checkout of 106, followed by John Mann, who was making his debut for Maritime.
Mann (24.14) emerged a winner in four straight legs, including a win in 14 and Paul Palmer (22.77) (pictured below), made it 3-0 when, after trailing 3-2, he levelled with a leg in 12, before winning the decisive seventh leg, aided by a maximum and a checkout of 115.
The visitors halted the slide by taking the next two but three victories from the last four sets, sealed a comprehensive win for the Keyham side.
Jon Easterbrook (19.09) won 4-0 while Mark Gilbery (22.38) was pushed the full distance but took the final leg with an outshot of 114.
In the final encounter of the evening, Glyn Wells achieved the highest average of 25.87, when winning 4-3, aided by three maximum scores.
Porters had a disappointing start when they were defeated 6-3 by Winchester Warriors.
Steve Brocklesby (21.56) made the scoreline 1-1 after winning his match 4-3, only for the hosts to fall behind again when losing the next two.
Andy Bates (27.48) stemmed the decline with a 4-1 success followed by a similar winning scoreline from Mark Shears (25.34) to draw level again at 3-3.
But that was the last point Porters were to win, despite going the full seven legs in two of the last three encounters.
Ker St Social Club were promoted from division one at the end of last term and in their opening match, inflicted a 6-3 defeat on Muff Boyz (Exmouth), the highlight being a 15-dart leg from Keelan Kay which he finished with a kill of 143.
Poison Ivy, who play out of the Westward Inn at Lee Mill, were making their Devon County super league debut and opened their account with a 7-2 win against Teignmouth’s Dicey’s Darters.
Neil White (24.44) emerged a winner in straight legs with a man-of-the-match performance while there was also a 4-0 success for Kenny McCullom (21.55).
Dan Puleston (22.81) and Dave Matthews (23.89) both won, dropping just a single leg, while there were 4-2 successes for both Pete Holland (23.87) and Mike Pearce (22.82).
Tex Pearce (20.52) was taken the full seven legs but still managed to put a point on the scoreboard before the visitors won the last two.
Another Plymouth side playing Super League for the first time were The Bluebird and they made their trip to Crediton worthwhile when they won 5-4 away at division two rivals Ships Ahoy.
Mark Henley impressed in the opening set when winning 4-3 with a 25.02 average while Rob Thorning (18.03) won 4-1 and there were victories in four straight legs for Rich Coombs (19.46) and Steve Barnes (20.24).
With the scoreline evenly poised at 4-4, Stewart Roberts (21.80) emerged a 4-2 winner, which included a 15-darter that ended with a checkout of 156.
Levy Ladies got off to the best possible start when they took all available points when hosting Cully Belles (Cullompton RFC).
The quartet of Hayley Brant (18.79), Trish Penberthy (15.34), Cat Callard (16.70) and Chrissie Kinnaird (19.78) all won without loss while there were 3-1 victories for Sarah Brown (15.17), Maria O’Brien (17.86) and Angie Trout (16.10).
Chrissie, (pictured right), not only achieved the lady-of-the-match award but recorded the highest average of any lady player throughout the league.
Maritime Ladies made the long journey to play the Golden Girls in Bideford, but the trip didn’t seem so long on the way home after they won 4-3.
Sue Pullen (3-1), Kim Reilly (3-0) and Mel Sharpe (3-0) put Maritime 3-0 up and although the hosts pegged it back to 3-3, Kayleigh Adams clinched the seventh and deciding point by a 3-0 margin.