THE WAY TO DO IT! By BOBBY
go again – yet another BDO Inter County season gets
under way and I bet everyone has got their darts out, pulled
on their shirts (just a little tighter than before!) and is
looking forward to playing better than they’ve ever
(the lucky few!) that will be the case, but for others it
will be business as usual as they discover that all that practice
in the garage is no substitute for the real thing.
To me it
is like the start of the football season – full of hope
and excitement. I don’t play county any more (I’m
not up to all the travelling) but I still have great memories
of the times that I did.
system is at the very backbone of the BDO and it’s where
all players serve their apprenticeships and learn their trade.
all county players every success in the 2008/2009 season.
I just wish I was young enough and fit enough to join them!
THE WAY TO COUNTY IT!
been reading lots of stuff on various internet forums having
a go at the BDO for the prize money on offer in their open
events – particularly the ones that have been shown
on Setanta Sports.
face it, there is always room for improvement, but as much
as we all want more money, I think that if players want more,
then they have to be prepared to pay more.
BDO has a great system of darts for all, but sometimes it
is that very system that causes the problems. For tournaments
to be within the grasp of grass roots players, it has always
been thought that entry fees need to be kept low and affordable.
with the financial troubles the country is in at the moment
everyone has less money to spend on the things they enjoy.
This has got to effect darts – especially pub, club
and even county players.
going back to the counties, I have always said that if every
county player paid, say £10 each year at the start of
every season, there would be a huge pot available for prize
money. Think what could be done if that was doubled or even
is, I remember the moans when the BDO asked for £1 per
the BDO counties ‘own’ the BDO and the players
are shareholders who must be prepared to invest in order to
see a return in prize funds.
in the Men’s Singles for the Setanta series has been
kept at just £10 per player. This month’s British
Open has a 1st prize of £3,000 with the runner-up getting
£1,000. If you tot up the other prize money the payout
is over £6,000, which represents 600 entries.
I am making is that it doesn’t matter who you are, you
can only pay out what you take in. The question is, would
those who are moaning be prepared to pay say £25 per
entry for better prize money in return?
I would, but I also know lots of people out there who just
couldn’t or wouldn’t be prepared to put their
hands in their pockets (unfortunately they are usually the
ones who are moaning in the first place!).
I am not
having a go at anyone, but trying to point out that while
the prize money in these BDO events probably does need to
be improved, there has to be a willingness by players to pay
higher entry fees.
THAT’S THE WAY TO PRIZE MONEY IT!
to the counties I would like to send my sincere congratulations
to a bunch of youngsters from my home county - the Essex County
Youth Team on winning the 2008 British Inter-County KO Cup
at Kettering (see photo).
out on top of the twenty-eight county youth teams who entered.
In the Semi-Finals they came up against Northamptonshire B
who boasted three England Youth Internationals in their team
4-3 with wins for Daniel Day, Alex Tinsley, Mike Neaves and
Daniel Parker of my home town of Colchester, who secured victory
in the Semi-Final and Final.
final the opponents were another strong team of youngsters,
Glamorgan B, but Essex emerged triumphant 5-2 winners. Well
done to all the players:
Day (Romford), James Jennings (Harlow), Mike Neaves and Alex
Tinsley (Chelmsford), Daniel Parker and Peter Browning (Colchester)
and Andrew Currivan (Walton-on-the-Naze).
Parker was the hero of the day, young Andrew Currivan only
lost one game all day long and recorded a marvellous 108 checkout
in the final! That’s my boy!!
time Essex Youth were Inter-County KO Champions was 2004,
but they have won the title more times than any other county.
Huge praise must go to manager Clive Sharp for creating a
fantastic team spirit.
nothing more than seeing youngsters playing and enjoying their
darts, and I have no doubt that among this team there are
some real stars of the future.
THE WAY TO YOUTH IT!
you all managed to catch me, Marie and George Hall on BBC’s
‘Celebrity Cash In The Attic’? (See photo).
Rippon was brilliant and has become the latest convert to
darts. It’s just a pity that our high-kick routine (a
take off of what she did on the Morecambe & Wise Show
so many years ago) didn’t get shown.
up to you, Doll’ I said to the lovely Angela. ‘Is
it to be a leg up or a leg over’? She didn’t even
blush, but I swear I got a wink as she showed that she can
still kick her leg as high as ever. As for me, I failed miserably!
she went away with a new nickname: Angela ‘Bag of Nails’
Rippon, because her darts were all over the shop – in
the wall, bouncing off the light and occasionally in the board.
I told her that it was like watching someone throwing a bag
all the banter and is one of those rare celebrities who really
is as nice as she comes across on telly – just like
disappointment in the programme was when it came to the auctioning
of all my ‘treasures’.
they should have gone to a specialist sports auction, but
they chose an auction room with a crowd that looked like the
Sid Waddell Fan Club – there was only a handful in the
room and they all looked as miserable as Gordon Brown at a
first England Shirt went for a very disappointing £80,
but a Leighton Rees shirt fetched £120 and was bought
by a Welsh dealer so at least it went back home.
good thing is that we set an initial target of £401
(I told Angela that it had to be 301, 401 or 501, so we went
for the one in the middle! The good news is that we ended
up with £522!
was donated to my local Gateway Club (Woodbridge Mencap) to
help with the things most of us take for granted – like
food and refreshment when they go out on day trips.
Club will be 40 years old next year and I was really touched
that when I went to give them the cheque they presented Marie
with some flowers as a ‘thank you’. It made the
whole ‘Cash In The Attic’ experience even more
has been some of the heart-warming reactions of viewers to
the auction. A lovely lady named Florence Jones from London’s
Edgware Road sent me a letter saying how disappointed she
was that my shirt didn’t make much money – and
she enclosed a cheque for £50 made out to the Gateway
the Isle-of-Wight has promised to add to the pot when she
next sees me, and Clive Stewart, Secretary of the Glemsford
& District Darts League in Halstead, where I am doing
a presentation next May, has said that they hope to raise
some more money for the deserving folk at the Gateway Club.
say charity begins at home have never been around darts people.
Hearts of gold the lot of ‘em!
THE WAY CASH IN THE ATTIC IT!
Had a great day at Brighton races with my pals from John Smith’s
recently. There were hundreds of people there and I entertained
the punters on the dartboard. It was a case of from the jockey
to the oche!
of the day was when a very nice lady asked my MC Roly if I
was his son! He didn’t bat an eyelid, but I couldn’t
resist a smile when he replied: ‘I wish he was!’
THAT’S THE WAY TO RACE IT!
forgettable night at The Legends came at Reading when I lost
to John Lowe. He played out of his skin so it was a good thing
I decided to wear a mask (see photo). It was my way of making
sure the crowd couldn’t see who was throwing bad!
THE WAY TO MASK IT!
Had a laugh
when I was being interviewed by Patrick Kinghorn on Setanta.
He asked me why I was wearing the mask and I told him that
if you played like a clown then you should dress like one!
But he looked a little put out when I said on live TV: ‘Maybe
you should get off and get changed!’
Floor Manager came up to me with a dart and asked if it was
mine. It wasn’t, but it turned out to be Lowey’s.
He always carries a spare in case a stem breaks, but I couldn’t
resist saying that it was no wonder I lost when he had 4 darts!
by saying that he just couldn’t get on with Phil Taylor’s
darts! Whatever did he mean?
THE WAY TO DART IT!
the players starting out on the new BDO Inter-County season….May
The Darts Be With You (they certainly ain’t with me
at the moment!).