Sunday saw the resumption of play across the nation as Event 4 of the Winmau DPA 2021 Satellite Series for Queensland, New South Wales and Victoria was held and Event 2 for Western Australia was also completed.
In Victoria the round of 16 included some quality matches as Dean Gibbs defeated Dale Burton-Pye in a deciding leg, as did Brandon Weening over Mal Cuming. Brody Klinge (v Tommy Hyland), Aaron Simpson (v Steve Duke), Rhys Mathewson (v Dean Sherson), and Steve Powell (v Lucas Cameron) all won their matches 4-2, whilst two players who have gone deep regularly in the series this year, Sam Ballinger (v Adam Power) and Stuart Coburn (v Jason Fraser) only conceded one leg each in their victories.
With the high calibre of the field it meant the quarter finals saw some top class match ups. Brandon Weening got the better of Coburn by four legs to one whilst Brody Klinge defeated Ballinger 4-2 in the top half of the draw. Rhys Mathewson swept the floor with Saturday’s event winner in Aaron Simpson to set up a meeting with Steve Powell who was just as impressive in dismissing Dean Gibbs four legs to one. The first semi final was a one way affair as two of the shining lights of Victorian darts in Weening and Klinge went head to head. Klinge broke in the first leg, pouncing with a check out total of 70 when his opponent failed to collect 20 for the leg in the previous visit. The Team Platinum man then secured a 16 dart leg to hold a two leg lead before throwing the same amount of darts to break again, set up by a 177 in his penultimate visit to move from 193 to needing only double eight. 17 darts later and Klinge was in the final.
In the second semi final Steve Powell opened the match with a 14 darts leg to hold throw before he failed to take advantage of two ton visits in his opening visits on the Mathewson throw. With both players holding throw across legs two to four the match was even at 2-2 when Mathewson took full advantage of Powell just being off his throw for one leg to take a 3-2 lead. In the next leg Powell missed the bull to take the match to a decider and Rhys Mathewson made him pay as he hit the double four to take the match and cement his place in the Final.
Thus the Final guaranteed four names would be recorded as winners across the four Victorian events for 2021. Mathewson held throw in the opening leg of this match although he had to watch Brody Klinge miss a dart at the bull before securing the early lead. Klinge then made a bit more comfortable work of holding his throw, thanks to early visits of 100 and 140 in the second leg. Klinge missed a chance to score 38 to break his opponent’s throw in the next leg and Mathewson secured the 24 required to take the lead once again, but the warning signs were out there. However both Klinge and Mathewson comfortably held their throw before Mathewson finally had a shot at a break of his own but failed to secure the 60 he required to take a two leg lead. Instead Klinge hit 80 to even things up and then pounced on his opponent in the next leg, securing a 78 check out to take the first break of the match and the lead for the very first time in the match. 18 darts later and Klinge was crowned champion of Event Four in Victoria.
In Western Australia their Event Two saw another new name added to the roll call of winners across the nation in the Winmau DPA 2021 Satellite Series, with Koha Kokiri defeating Saturday’s winner Tim Pusey in the Final.
The round of 16 had seen victories for Pusey and Kokiri as well as Lewis Kirk (making a welcome return to the DPA oche), Alexander David, Lee Chapman, David Hughes, Loz Ryder and Peter Sutton. Three of the four quarter finals then finished as white washes with Pusey seeing off Kirk, Chapman defeating David and Ryder putting Hughes away. In the final match of that bracket Kokiri and Sutton were at 3-2 to Kokiri on throw when Sutton was unable to put away 39 and Kokiri pounced on what would be the final visit of the game to take the break and the match, four legs to two.
Kokiri then won his semi final by the same scoreline over Loz Ryder to deny The Warrior two Finals in two WA events for 2021. In this match Kokiri broke his opponent in the first leg and then took a 2-1 lead only for Ryder to break back in leg four. Kokiri then hit three tons in a row to secure his second break of the match and despite some inconsistent scoring in the sixth leg Kokiri was able to hold throw for the win.
The other semi final was an even tighter affair as Tim Pusey made his way through thanks to victory in a deciding leg. Lee Chapman actually broke the Pusey throw in the opening leg but threw away the advantage by conceding his own throw to Pusey in 17 darts in leg two. Chapman then busted a shot at a Shanghai check out and could only secure 100 on his next visit to leave 20. This gave Pusey a chance to get back into the leg and hold throw and the Team Misfits man took the opportunity presented to him and thus led for the first time in the match. Chapman then held throw comfortably before a poor leg of darts from both players saw Pusey fall over the line to take the lead once more. Chapman dusted off the previous leg quickly and produced a remarkable 14 dart leg thanks to multiple 140 visits to put things all even once more. Pusey had the throw in the final leg and he needed just 15 arrows to take out the match, a 71 check out putting him through to his second Final in two days.
As in the previous day the Final was a one way affair, but this time it was not Pusey who enjoyed the spoils. Pusey left an awkward 7 on his own throw in the opening leg and could not take it out, leaving the madhouse, as Kokiri jumped on the mistake to take an early lead. He then held his throw professionally before Pusey secured what would turn out to be his only leg of the match (and that was despite busting a check out chance at 32.) Thanks to four visits of one hundred Kokiri then held his throw before breaking the Pusey throw for a second time in leg five, with Pusey unable to convert 60 (leaving 20) Kokiri was able to pounce with a 46 check out. Kokiri then held throw in 18 darts, taking the match by scoring the 61 required at his sixth visit to the oche. Thus Koha Kokiri was able to secure Event Two of the Western Australian calendar.
Queensland again had the most competitors with 85 players competing to be crowned Event Four champion. The Round of 16 stage saw two matches go to deciding legs as the ever consistent Jeremy Fagg saw off Paul O’Malley and Dave Marshall took out Tony Davy. Brendon Saunders then saw off Bill Aitken 4-2 but his namesake, Brendon McCausland, was on the other side of a 4-2 result, losing to his Team Misfits team mate Robbie King. Matt Mullen saw off Josh Kime by the same scoreline, as did Raymond O’Donnell, over James Raroa. Raymond Smith secured a place in the quarter finals with a 4-1 victory over Mick Lacey and Shaun Kopecki also got through, winning by the same margin over Jackson Davies.
Fagg then whitewashed Marshall in their quarter final, the match including a 12 dart opening leg, all the more remarkable as Fagg had opened with a visit of just 40. Kopecki kept up his momentum as he dismissed his opponent 4-1, Brendon Saunders only leg coming from his holding of throw in his first attempt of the match. In the bottom half of the draw Robbie King moved to an early two leg lead against Matt Mullen and held on in a different fashion to take the win four legs to two. Different because only the opening leg of the match was not a break of throw. In the final match of the round two Rays went head to head and it was O’Donnell who saw off Smith in a final leg decider. Smith had lost his throw in the opening leg before throwing an amazing 12 dart leg to get back onto level grounds. He then held in 13 darts to look to be headed towards a win but O’Donnell held off the onslaught to tie things up after four legs. With both players then holding throw it was Smith who threw first in the deciding leg but O’Donnell was able to break the throw and secure the last position in the semi finals.
With two previous victors in the King v O’Donnell semi final it was assured that the Final would have a previous winner fight it out to become the first person across the nation to secure two titles in 2021. It was Robbie King who would take that chance as he quickly moved to a three leg lead and despite Ray O’Donnell securing a 15 dart hold of throw in leg four he was unable to break the King throw in the next leg and thus lost by four legs to one.
The second semi final was a much closer affair although early, thanks to 13 and 15 dart legs, it looked like it would be all Jeremy Fagg. However Shaun Kopecki was able to hold his throw in the third leg before breaking the Fagg throw in 14 darts to put the match back into parity. In the fifth leg both players had opportunities to move ahead, indeed Fagg busted a 25 chance on what would be his final visit of the leg, but it was Kopecki who finally held throw. Fagg then held throw to move the game into a deciding leg. Kopecki threw first but was only able to score 41. Fagg then let him off, indeed he scored one less with his opening throws. Visits of 140, 100 and 100 in three of his next four turns at the oche gave Kopecki a good lead in the leg and he made the most of it to move into his first Winmau DPA Satellite series Final of 2021 with a 4-3 victory.
The Final proved to be a close affair. On throw in the first leg King was unable to convert 50 with six darts and it was Kopecki who took an early lead. He then consolidated this by holding throw in the second leg before hitting four triple figure visits in succession and moving to a 3-0 lead with a 13 dart break of throw. For King to have any chance he had to break straight back and he did so, although it was only after his opponent had missed a shot at holding. King then held throw, moving from 228 to being checked out in six darts. King was still behind on the scoreboard and Kopecki then held his own throw to move back two legs clear. King held throw before pouncing on the mistakes of his opponent to take the match to a deciding leg. Robbie King had all the momentum and had to hold throw to secure his second Event of the weekend. In leg nine both players started with low scoring visits before King secured a ton. Shaun Kopecki responded with a 140 and a ton follow up moved him into the lead in the leg. King secured his second ton of the leg shortly afterwards but it left him needing 44 and he would never get a shot at that score as Kopecki fired home a 63 check out to take out the Final by five legs to four. Thus, just as in Victoria, Queensland would crown a fourth different victor in four 2021 Winmau DPA Satellite tour events.
New South Wales were the last to crown a winner across the weekend as 63 players fought out Event Four. It was in this event that the Winmau DPA 2021 Satellite series finally crowned the first dual winner, a result assured after previous winners Dave Marland and Mitchell Clegg made the Final of Event Four.
Apart from Marland and Clegg other Round of 16 winners included Russell Northey, Clayton Collins, Peter Wilmott, Mike Bonser, David Cairns and Andrew Eagers. Both Marland and Clegg then made their ways into the semi finals with comfortable 4-1 wins, over Northey and Bonser respectively. The other two quarters were much closer affairs. Clayton Collins got out to a 3-0 lead in his match only for Peter Wilmott to demonstrate his class by securing his own three legs on the trot. Collins was able to stop the momentum by holding throw in the deciding leg to take the win. In their match Andrew Eagers and David Cairns held their opening throws before Eagers had to fight hard but held onto his throw once again. With Cairns holding in leg four things were even once more but with Eagers holding throw once again, this time more comfortably, Cairns had to hold throw to stay in the match, which he did. Thus Eagers was looking to hold throw as had been done in every leg of the match so far. However he was unable to come back from a poor start in the leg and Cairns eventually checked out with a visit of 62 to take his place in the semi finals.
In his semi final Cairns was able to hold throw before breaking the Clegg throw with a 14 dart leg, including his first three visits of 100, 140 and a maximum. Clegg then showed his class as he secured a break back immediately thanks to a 16 dart leg. He was less comprehensive in holding throw of his own but still did so to move to 2-2 before breaking Cairns once more in 17 darts. On throw in the next leg Clegg opened with a 140 and then secured the same score on his penultimate visit before dismissing Cairns four legs to two with a 92 check out.
The other semi final saw Dave Marland, who had been unable to play the previous day due to work commitments, secure a comprehensive win over his good friend Clayton Collins. Marland held throw in 18 darts before jumping on a chance in the next leg as Collins was unable to put away 40 to hold throw. With Collins requiring 16 in the next leg Marland got the 24 he needed to take a 3-0 lead in a race to four and with Collins busting 64 in the next leg, and then leaving 16 after a further visit, Marland secured his second break of the match and his place in the Final with a 4-0 win.
The Final saw Marland and Clegg repeat the Sunday clash of the opening weekend in NSW but this time it was The Big Fish who came away with the victory. In the first leg of the match Marland opened with visits of 100, 140 and 180 before finishing off the leg, and taking the break, in 14 darts. He then held throw with visits of 100, 140 and 100 mid leg, to take a 2-0 lead. Clegg then held his throw for the first time in the match, despite busting 81 along the way he took out the leg with his 17th dart. In leg four Marland missed out on converting 60 and had to watch as his opponent pounced to take out 68 and draw back level in the match. Marland was not to be outdone though, and with Clegg missing the bull for leg five Marland struck with a double 12 to take a break advantage once more. Thanks to visits of 125, 140 and 140 Marland then held throw in 14 darts to move within a leg of the match. The seventh leg saw both players fail to create opportunities as Marland moved from 90 to 50 after Clegg had moved from 136 to 95. Clegg then hit 90 and thus missed a chance for the leg but Marland presented him with others by leaving 18 on the board. In his next visit to the oche Clegg scored only three to leave the madhouse before Marland secured the required total to take the win. For Marland it was his third Final in the three Winmau DPA 2021 Satellite Series events he has played in and he secured revenge for his only loss in these Finals this year.
Overall it was another successful weekend of events as the Winmau boards filled with darts across the nation. With new venues playing events over the upcoming weeks more new names will be etched on to the winner’s board of the Winmau DPA 2021 Satellite Series.
For full details on the DartPlayers Australia Tour, visit their website: https://www.dartplayersaustralia.com/