DARTS: ‘Wolfie’ and Claire on the Ball to seal England wins

Claire Ball and Ian Tilley
Claire Ball and Ian Tilley
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LOCAL darting aces Claire Ball and Martin Adams helped England secure more sucess British International Championship in Wales.

Deeping legend Adams skippered the national men’s team to glory in the 33rd staging of the event at Llanelli, while rising Lutton star Ball helped land the overall women’s title.

“Wolfie” and his team of men saw off Scotland 10-2 and host nation Wales 8-4 to lift the trophy.

Adams achieved an impressive 35.79 average in his defeat of Duncan Hastings in the Scotland clash and then followed by sinking Welshman Chris Jones on his way to the top player award.

For Ball – a regular player on the Spalding scene – the event marked her international debut.

She was picked to play in the ladies’ first game of the weekend against Scotland and was drawn against Louise Hepburn.

The first two legs went in favour of the Scot, but Ball put in a dynamite finish to win the last three legs and secure her first-ever England victory with a 22.70 average. England won the match 6-0 to put themselves in a commanding position.

Ball was again picked to play against Wales, but slipped to a 3-1 defeat against Chris Savvery in a close game. But with England again winning 4-2 overall, they had done enough to clinch the title.

Spalding and District Darts League chairman and local darts referee Ian Tilley also travelled to Wales to support close friends Ball and Adams.

However, when he arrived at the venue he was asked to do some refereeing with the microphone on the stage.

He ended up taking charge of the last three games in the England versus Scotland men’s match and the first three of the England’s clash with Wales. Tilley also picked up a medal on the stage at the end of the event.

Tilley said: “It was a honour to shout the 180 out on the big international stage.”

• NEW Saracen’s Head made it three wins from as many games in Spalding and District Ladies’ League to go clear at the top.

They beat Fenway A 13-5, with Casey Horspool, Shirley Povey, Pauline Hunt and Lindsey Wingell all in fine singles form.

Trish Cunningham did manage a 120 check out for Fenway.

Ship are second following a win by the same score at Holbeach USC. Dawn Wright hit a 180 maximum for them in the opening match.

Also winners in the top flight were Riverside. They edged out Elizabethan 11-7, a result clinched by final doubles pairing of J Sinclair and L Pack.

In Division Two, Horse and Groom B kept their 100 per cent record alive with a 12-6 success over Deer’s Leap.

The victory was inspired by a super start, with Joy Silver taking a maximum 3-0 win.

Punchbowl are also unbeaten after a 9-9 draw with Lake Ross. S Hare and S Edwards saved the day with a 3-0 doubles triumph at the death.