Devon defeat Sussex for back to back victories in BICC

DEVON picked up British Inter County Championship back to back victories in the same season for the first time since March 2017, to consolidate their position in the top four of division one.

The victory was made possible by an outstanding performance from the two B teams on the first day, after making an arduous 200-mile trip to Worthing in Sussex.

The Ladies B once again laid down the foundations when they defeated their counterparts 6-0 in the opening fixture.

Lisa Hughes (17.61) and Karen Matthews (17.68) both won 3-1 as did lady-of-the-match Jodie Hawton (19.70), aided by a maximum 180.

Tracy Ware (19.27) won 3-0, aided by a 21-dart leg which she finished with a kill of 141, before Sarah Brown (18.56) and Cat Callard (15.34) also won in three straight legs.

The Men’s B side kept the scoreboard ticking over and won the first five sets as Devon surged into an 11-0 lead.

Dean Angell (23.47), John Burton (22.70) and Mark Vellacott (21.36) all won by the odd leg in seven as did Mark Turner (25.51) whose victory included a 15-dart leg which he finished with an outshot of 140.

The hosts halted the onslaught temporarily when winning the next two, before Lewis Dare (26.66) emerged a 4-3 winner, with his best leg being claimed in 14.

Man-of-the-match Kieran Burns (27.83) produced arguably one of his best performances for the county when he won in 16, 16, 20 and 20 for a 4-0 win before Terry McDermott (24.44) also won without loss, aided by a finish of 114.

The last two sets were won by Sussex, but Devon boasted a 14-4 overnight lead.

That superb advantage was added to the following day when the Ladies A side triumphed 4-2.

Chrissie Kinnaird (18.78) and Anna Johnson (14.99) both won by a 3-1 margin while Kelly-Marie Gabriel (15.71) was also successful, despite being taken the full five legs.

In a fitting finale, the last point was won by Maria O’Brien (24.01) who came from 2-1 down to win 3-2 in 21, 18 and 21.

Devon’s lead was now 18-6, an advantage they were glad to have, as apart from three outstanding performances, the Men’s A side were well beaten by an in-form Sussex outfit.

The visitor’s winning treble was headed by Paul Milford (32.02) who emerged a 4-2 winner in 15, 15,17 and 15 followed by a 4-0 success in 17, 21, 17 and 16 from John Mann (28.23).

In the final encounter of the weekend, Danny Allen (27.79) (pictured above) won 4-2, claiming the decisive sixth leg in 12 darts when finishing at the first time of asking from 138.

Although disappointed not to have won by a bigger margin, Devon’s victory was most welcome, and it stands them in good stead to press on in 2019.

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