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  • Writer's pictureJo Clements

Luck at the Irish

26th October saw 18 of us head over to Newry in Northern Ireland for the Irish Open. I am beginning to conquer my fear of flying and the quick up and down flight was fantastic! Still tired from jetsetting back from Turkey two days earlier I actually managed to sleep on the flight, a nice little power nap to recharge some batteries.

We all checked In to a very old Irish manor house. The bedrooms were enormas! The darts began on Friday night with the mixed triples. I played with my brother Mick Connerton and Lyndon Pearce. A very strong team when firing. We played well all hitting the scores and the doubles. We bowed out in the last 16 to a very strong threesome from Scotland.

Saturday was Singles day. Started as 7th Seed this time. With my first game playing a lovely lady & Facebook friend Lynsey McDonald. I set off strongly winning the first 2 legs by checking out a cool 115. We we're at the finish of leg 3 when the double eluded me, the harder I tried the further away it seemed to go. Lynsey started her comeback and brought the game back to 2.2 with some great power scoring. We shook hands and headed into the deciding leg. This leg was pretty even all the way, it was down to the last double. On this occasion it was myself which hit it, narrowly seizing victory. I'm sure the luck of the Irish was with me here.

My 2nd game saw me storm through with a 3.0 victory. My second this game saw me start with with 137 then 180. I missed my double for a 12 darter, it ended up a 17 darter. This then led me to face the lovely Lorraine Winstanley.

It was a very evenly scoring match where I took the first leg. I had my chances in the second leg but could not capitalise. Leg 3 saw Lorraine stamp her authority on the game. Our fourth leg was again quite even but again the wires stopped me going any further. I was really happy with how I played. It's getting a little less nerve wracking playing the big names. Ecstatic to finish in the last 8 yet again. My best ever run on the ladies tour.

Sunday saw myself and Heather Lodge enter our doubles bid to get our furthest yet. We had a bye first round before playing two ladies from Ireland. We we're victorious with some power scoring and finishing. We then beat another pair of Irish ladies to take us through into the semi finals against Scottish international Louise Hepburn and my singles and triples opponent of the weekend, Lynsey McDonald.

This semi final was highly fuelled with some excellent nip and.tuck scoring. Legs were level at 2.2, another decider. With both pairs on a one dart double I split my favourite double 14 to leave Heather with double 7. Whilst Louise and Lynsey were on 20. All three players missed the winning doubles and it came back round to myself. I placed a good marking dart and with the second managed to guide it into the long awaited and decisive double. We we're in the final!!!

Going one stage further than our best run at the Scottish Open we prepared to face two awesome, young darting talents of Beau Greaves & Robyn Byrne. Beau & I often room together on the comps she attends, she is such a humble, well mannered and lovely girl with a massive talent and potential in this sport. We would need to play well to stand a chance as these girls had knocked out some top talent in the ladies pairs.

I was a little on edge at the fact it was being streamed, my first time there. We played well but the young ladies played better. We lost in the final which is our best ever result since playing together. Another great personal result.

I just need to get back in to winning ways for my county of Lancashire this coming weekend, that will be the icing on the cake. #norestforthewicked

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