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Keith Deller wins the Betfred series 2009 with Bobby George runner-up.

Keith Deller was crowned the 2009 Betfred.com League of Legends champion on Saturday night at the Meadows Arena, in County Durham.

Keith beat Bobby George in the final by 5 games to 3, in this 3 event series, reduced from 7 by the demise of Setanta TV, Deller proved to be the player to beat, after winning the first knockout at the Athena Arena, Leicester, and then coming runner up at the second at the Marten Country Hotel, Middlesborough, to Bob Anderson.

The defending champion: Bob Anderson was out of sorts on finals night, his opponent in the first round: Peter Evison, was 4-1 up in the best of 9 legs match, and although Anderson came back to take the match by 5 legs to 4, a big question mark remains over Evisons ability, and to close out the match.

Bobby George was a comfortable winner against Dave Whitcombe in the first round, before John Lowe and Eric Bristow roused the large crowd with another of their famous encounters, Lowe came out the winner, and proved he was the player at the top of his game in this second Betfred Series.

The semi-finals contained some class dart throwing, George found his form, Anderson lost his, and struggled to a 5-3 defeat at the hands of Mr Bling.

The second semi-final was a classic, Deller v Lowe, it went to the wire, and when Lowe scored a maximum with his second throw in the final leg, a place in the final looked to be his, Deller however thought different, and in the end winning the bulls eye to start the match decided who would go through to the final of the series.

The final was played in good spirit, George did have his chances, but the consistency of Deller over the night, and the series gave him the edge, he won by 5 legs to 3. with an average of 88.32.

Keith also picked up the Sharon Henderson Memorial Trophy for achieving the most maximums, nine in total, John Lowe picked up the prize for the highest finish, a 160 against Cliff Lazarenko, Lowe also recorded the highest average: 96.6 against Deller in round two at Middlesborough.

Bob Anderson justified his billing as favourite throughout the Betfred.com League of Legends by capturing the inaugural title with a 10-4 final victory over Keith Deller.

The 60-year-old from Clevedon produced a sparkling display at the Circus Tavern that was reminiscent of the years when he reached two World Championship semi-finals at the same venue.

Deller was back on the stage only 30 minutes after beating Cliff Lazarenko to reach the £15,000 showdown and could not reproduce the fine form he had shown in that success.

It was the Limestone Cowboy who flew out of the blocks and into a 4-0 lead thanks to crisp finishing on several doubles.

And that margin was never bridged by Del Boy, who simply could not live with his opponent and had to settle for the £13,000 runner's up cheque.

"My mindset was to get in there and win and I'm happy to say I did that," said 1988 world champion Anderson.

"I'm very proud to be the inaugural Betfred.com League of Legends champion.

"I was particularly delighted with the way I played in the semi-final to get past Peter Evison. He is a tough nut to crack.

"Keith had just had a tough game against Cliff and I'd had a rest so maybe that explains why I started as well as I did

"But to play against these guys on a regular basis again has been fantastic.It's really woken me up and told me I can still do it and be up there and compete.

"At the age of nearly 61 I'm very pleased to be in the League of Legends and I'm looking forward to next year."

Deller acknowledged he had simply been outplayed by a better opponent on the night.

"In the first six legs everything went to plan for Bob," said the 48-year-old from Suffolk. "That was the form of someone who could be ranked in the top 16 in the world. His first six legs were absolutely fantastic.

"He admitted to me afterwards that he had hit absolutely everything and that's what you want to do in a final.

"I wasn't expecting him to play as well as that but he is a great champion and at the end of the day the best player won it. I can't argue with that.

"I think all eight players have done really well in the competition and I'd like to say a very big thank you to Betfred because without them the League of Legends wouldn't have happened."



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