DARTS: Classy Claire makes history

FAB FOUR: From left ' singles semi-finalist Chris Sloan, first-ever female winner Claire Ball, runner-up Karl Rolfe and semi-finalist Duggie McInnerney.
FAB FOUR: From left ' singles semi-finalist Chris Sloan, first-ever female winner Claire Ball, runner-up Karl Rolfe and semi-finalist Duggie McInnerney.
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Ace thrower Claire Ball made Pinchbeck and District Darts League history by becoming the first woman to win the coveted singles title.

Having beaten Chris Sloan 2-1 in the last four, the Lamb and Flag C star won the best of five-leg final 3-2 against Karl Rolfe (Lincoln Arms A).

In a close and high-scoring game, Ball nailed a 180 in the deciding leg to become the first woman to lift the crown since the league’s inception in 1948.

The first final of the night saw Fenway lift the Ward Trophy after beating Riverside C 5-2 – thanks to wins from Simon Juckes, Karl Arnold and Aron Moyses.

The KO Cup finale was a real thriller, with Division One champions Lamb and Flag C edging out Lincoln Arms A 4-3.

Mark Waters beat Rolfe 2-1 in the decider in a match that saw Waters, Gary Mace and Dave Piccaver hit 180s.

Next up was the Ladies’ Cup final, with Lamb and Flag B’s Casey Horspool seeing off Stacey Bannister (Queen B) 2-0.

The impressive Horspool then took a second title when she lifted the Captain’s Cup. She edged out Ship A skipper Colin Beckett 2-1.

Alan Harris (Lincoln Arms) was the first winner of the Landlords Cup, donated by Riverside’s Nick Bond. He beat Mick Allen (Lamb and Flag) 2-1.

Another trophy went the way of Lamb and Flag in the Mixed Pairs final, as Ash Allen and Dawn Wright beat (Flag A) Piccaver and Ball (Flag C) 2-0.

Ball and Piccaver did hit back to win the League Pairs final, though. They shaded a close contest with Ash Allen and Mark Woodrow 2-1 – despite a 180 from Allen.

As ever, the Mark Tansley Memorial Trophy closed the night – and this year it went to Riverside B’s Graham Parker, throwing a 180 en-route to defeating Ball 3-0.