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Bowland versus Pendle in Women’s Darts is the college darting equivalent of an unstoppable force meeting an immovable object. Except there can only be one winner because Women’s Darts is best of seven, so there is no possibility of a draw.
After last year, Pendle were chomping at the bit to get revenge over Bowland, who pipped them to the post in the league by the way of a resounding victory in the end of season play off. To give you a picture of how close the league was last year – both teams had the same points, but one team had a higher score difference and the other team had a higher leg difference.
The date was shared between the darts game and the 21st birthday of a Bowland team member. The new tradition in Bowland is to all be in fancy dress if your game coincides with a team member’s birthday. So, all seven of the Bowland team dressed up as Harry Potter, ironically making it a clash between the witches of Pendle and the wizards of Bowland.
First up for Bowland was Helen Davies who, as of yet, is unbeaten. She finished the game cleanly with a 2 – 0 victory over Ellie Cram of Pendle, giving Bowland an early lead. Next up was the birthday girl, Natalia Buckley versus Pendle’s Hayley Booth. Bowland were determined not to let her lose on her birthday and seemingly spurred her on to a 2-1 victory through the medium of song.
At 2-0 up Bowland knew the match was far from over, as Pendle is an excellent team with fantastic strength in depth and had most of their better players still to come. Pendle bounced back strong and before anyone knew what had happened it was 2 – 2 overall, with Pendle catapulted right back into the match courtesy of 2-1 and 2-0 wins for Kate Jenner and Poppy Mylroie respectively.
Aimee Hopper, a Bowland veteran from last year’s league winning team was up next against Hayley Smith of Pendle. Her performance on the night was outstanding scoring three tons, and checking out coolly and calmly with the minimum of fuss, sending Bowland 3-2 up with just two games to play. Next up for Bowland was Erin Royle, who promptly dispatched of her wizarding cloak and glasses before stepping up to the oche. However Royle was no match for the ruthless Claire Walker, Pendle Captain, who had pulled the score back level within ten minutes of the game commencing. Emma Geraghty was far too good for Nicola Williams in the final game of the night, with some fantastic high scoring by both playes in what should have been an extremely tense encounter. Geraghty was the first to hit the double in both legs, winning 2-0 and helping Pendle to a 4-3 victory overall.
With this result, the league is looking extremely close. Bowland are sitting on top, clear by three points. However Bowland are the only team in the league to have played seven games. So, while Pendle won this time, the closeness of the match proves there’s no room for error and one mistake looks like it could cost a team the league. Term two is going to be very interesting for Women’s Darts, especially with Bowland now out for revenge.