THE Knack Premier League in Seaham got underway again this week with a change to the format which now sees two games every week for each player.
The League has also increased to 22 players with some new players coming in – most notably Peterlee’s Dave “The Badger” Prins, who graced the famous Lakeside World Championships for five consecutive years.
Reigning champion Paul Williams is still the man to beat and he put in two sublime performances to kick off his title defence.
Also in are former Durham County star Kevin Elliott as well as the returning Jimmy Ashett and Eddie Ashman.
Reigning champion Paul Williams is still the man to beat though and he put in two sublime performances to kick off his title defence.
He beat Anth Skelton 5-1 and David Brown 5-0 with a maximum and three 14-dart legs in the process.
Prins showed his class as he won 5-0 and 5-2 against Brown and a very impressive Dan Gillibrand which included two 180s, a 121 checkout and a best leg of 14 darts.
The 2013 champion Kevin Guy also impressed as he raced to victories in his two games 5-0 and 5-1 against newcomer Stephen Ess and Ray Malarkey.
Davey Thompson hit two 180s and a 110 checkout as he won 5-0 and 5-3 in wins over Malarkey and a hard-fought win over last season’s bottom-half winner Spiller Henderson.
Kevin Elliott fought off the impressive Gillibrand 5-2 in his first game despite two maximums by Gillibrand, with a best leg of 14 darts before thrashing Anthony Gale 5-0.
Neil Rose started strongly as he beat Murton’s Neil Mather 5-1 before dispatching another newcomer Geordie Morton 5-2, with a 180 in each game.
Steve Skinner hit a fantastic 12-dart leg in his opening leg of the night with scores of 180, 100, 100 and a 121 checkout but went on to lose 5-2 against the returning Paul Gillibrand.
Skinner made amends in his second game with a 5-2 win over John Squizz.
Eddie Ashman looked back to his best as he whitewashed Barry Rutherford in his first game before a thrilling 5-3 win over Anth Skelton which ensured Ashman took maximum points on his return.
Arguably Seaham’s best ever player, Jimmy Ashett also collected six points with a tough 5-3 win over a much-improved John Allan coming from 3-2 behind, before seeing off Stephen Ess 5-1.
Anthony Gale was a 5-2 winner over John Squire while the other three games all ended in 4-4 draws between Mather and Rutherford, Morton and Henderson, and Allan and Paul Gillibrand.
Results. First Half: Dave Prins 5 David Brown 0, Ray Malarkey 0 Davey Thompson 5, Neil Mather 1 Neil Rose 5, Geordie Morton 4 Spiller Henderson 4, Anth Skelton 1 Paul Williams 5, Eddie Ashman 5 Barry Rutherford 0, Kevin Guy 5 Stephen Ess 0, John Allan 3 Jimmy Ashett 5, Steve Skinner 2 Paul Gillibrand 5, Kevin Elliott 5 Dan Gillibrand 2, Anthony Gale 5 John Squire 2.
Second Half: Paul Williams 5 David Brown 0, Jimmy Ashett 5 Stephen Ess 1, Eddie Ashman 5 Anth Skelton 3, Barry Rutherford 4 Neil Mather 4, Kevin Elliott 5 Anthony Gale 0, Steve Skinner 5 John Squire 2, Spiller Henderson 3 Davey Thompson 5, Neil Rose 5 Geordie Morton 2, Kevin Guy 5 Ray Malarkey 1, Dan Gillibrand 2 Dave Prins 5, John Allan 4 Paul Gillibrand 4.