• Jo Clements

Hard Times & heart break


Following my first county win & 180 in the presence of my dad things were looking good. I had ended the season within the BDO in 19th position. This is over 10 places higher than the previous year. I had finally ranked in the top 20 darting ladies in the world. I had also qualified for the World Masters and World Pro playoffs at the home of darts the famous Circus Tavern.

What many people may not know is that at this point I was battling my own personal issues whilst also being the main carer for my lovely father whom had been terminally ill with Lung Cancer & Alzheimers for a couple of years. My Dad was my biggest fan ( narrowly pipping my youngest daughter Charlotte & partner Kev ) and if I am being honest I strived to make him proud.

Due to my dad's ill health I was not able to go to the first competition of the new season in Northern Ireland. I had to stay and care for him as he had wished. My father passed away on 6th October. We were all devastated but with him in his home.

Since then I have found that despite trying my hardest my darts just weren't going the same. They felt alien in my hand, they would not go where I was aiming. People have told me to not try so hard and that it will be the lack of practise over the past few weeks. Also my emotional state of mind. I really hope it is because now more than ever do I want to make him proud and get on the TV playing.

Following Dads passing there was further family devastation this led to the indecision of whether to attend the 2nd event on the BDO calendar (Cyprus Open - which we had saved up all year to pay). There was nothing further we could do other than get our dusty darts and head off.

Cyprus - again was extremely disappointing for me. I really struggled to find my mark, to focus & concentrate. My sister in law & I did manage to get into the semi finals of the pairs on my birthday being taken out by the fantastic Lisa Ashton & Anastasia Dobromyslova, but that was the most I could even try to celebrate.

I spent Cyprus reflecting on myself & darts. I even contemplated giving it up however due to the kind words and support from a select few I won't give up. I will make my dad proud... I won't give up until I have played on TV as he wanted.

I spent some relaxation time away with my partner. I was determined not to give up so attended the World events I had qualified for. The masters was a continuation of Cyprus. You have to be on your A game if you are going up against the fabulous Maggie Sutton. However A game was not what came so Maggie beat me 4.0.

After a few days with no darts I was determined to do better. Despite there being no where near where we were staying to practise I focused on my mental well being and clearing my head of all negative things. Monday was the World Pro playoffs. A chance to play on the TV from the O2 arena in January.

I arrived in a more positive state of mind. I played well. My darts felt a little more at ease and familiar to me. I went on to finish in the last 32 out of 256. I saw TWINKLE glimpses that my darts are still there.

Never did I ever think I would say this but Darts is not EVERYTHING! You certainly know whom your riends and supporters are in times of need. I have come home now more determined than ever. I am going to practise all I can to make up from the poor start to this season. I WILL make Dad & family proud.


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