LOOKING back through my archives, it was 15 years ago next month in 2005, that I reported that Colin Sibley became the first Cornishman to hit the perfect nine-dart game in a competitive match
. . . but he wasn’t.
It has since transpired that that accolade went to a 46-year-old building manager some 24 years earlier.
Playing in the Rising Sun in the individual competition of the Truro and District League, George Champion won the first leg of his best of three encounter in nine when he hit back to back 180s followed by treble 20, treble 15, double 18 and went on to win 2-1.
Champion said: “I lost the second leg because of the shock of getting the nine-darter.
“The Rising Sun is quite a small, cosy pub. There were about 30 people there and not all of them were conscious of what I had achieved.
“But the landlord was very appreciative, and we had a few drinks to celebrate”.
But that should take nothing away from Sibley’s feat when he realised his lifetime ambition playing for Lucky Kiss B in Premier Division East of the Cornwall Super League.
Playing against Saltash side Brunel A, Sibley was 2-2 in the best of five encounter against Mark Hopkins, before hitting seven treble 20s, followed by treble 19 and double 12.
Ironically, Hopkins had five darts at a double to win 3-1, before Sibley hit his landmark leg.
The 2004-2005 season was a very good one for the Launceston thrower. He played for the successful Grenville side in the Plymouth City Super League and showed his prowess in December 2004 when he won the coveted Champion of Champions title when defeating Mark Turner in the final.
Sibley also played in the Launceston Men’s League for Westgate A and the successful side which included Colin Mapstone, Mike Robbins, Roger Wright, George Quirk, Anthony Davey, Trevor Worden, Peter Sandercock and Mike Hellicott won no fewer than six titles in that season including the 2004-2005 league crown and the prestigious individual title which was won by . . . Colin Sibley.
The photograph shows Colin in his Cornwall shirt which he donned on 45 occasions. He made his county debut in September 2002 at home to Leicestershire when he beat Graham Stockdale 3-2 and played his last game in April 2007 at home to Kent, finishing his county career with a winning percentage of 53.33%.