Greetings from snowy Veldhoven!
Today was the Dutch Open Pairs and there were plenty of fantastic pairings out there – with the possible exception of me and my partner who couldn’t go further than Round 2!
The Dutch Open Pairs is always very interesting because of its 701 format and the eight who reached the Quarter Finals in the Men’s Pairs were:
Stephen Bunting/Jeffrey van de Ven v Brian Dawson/Paul Harvey
Mark Blandford/James Hurrell v Darryl Fitton/Tony O’Shea
Scott Waites/Garry Thompson v Dimitri van den Bergh/Kenny Neyens
Philip Borthwick/James Summers v Hermie van Orsouw/Braulio Roncero
It was a great mix of players in the latter stages, with 2009 Champions Waites & Thompson considered to be big favourites for their Quarter Final. Trouble is, no one told the Belgians and a fantastic performance from them earned a Semi Final place with a 3-1 win!
Meanwhile there was a comfortable 3-0 victory over Blandford/Hurrell for Fitton/O’Shea.
In the Semi Finals, the young Belgian pairing of Dimitri van den Bergh and Kenny Neyens reached the final with yet another brilliant display of darts. Their opponents in the final would be O’Shea and Fitton. It set up an interesting final between the veterans and the youngsters.
The question is: Could the two 17 year olds pull off a big upset?
The Ladies Final saw Rachel Brooks & Christine Readhead taking on the formidable duo of Lakeside runner-up Deta Hedman and Karen Lawman! All four ladies played some outstanding darts all day and we were treated to a great match. The first six legs were nip and tuck, but it was Karen and Deta who took a 4-2 advantage and needed just one more leg for the title.
Rachel and Christine pulled a leg back to exert some pressure but in the next leg, Deta checked out 32 to take the Ladies Pairs title.
A great final and congratulations to the Ladies!
The final match of the day saw Tony O’Shea and Darryl Fitton taking on the two teenagers from Belgium - the very impressive Dimitri van den Bergh and Kenny Neyens. The youngsters had taken some big scalps en route to the final, and knew they would have to play their best to defeat Darryl and Tony.
And it was the youngsters who made the first breakthrough, taking the first set 3 legs to 2! Kenny Neyens taking out a cheeky 60 – D20 D10 to secure the set.
The second set was more one-sided in favour of the Englishmen, as they strolled through to tie the match up at 1-1.
It was most certainly all to play for in the third and final set and once again, but it was Darryl and Tony who went up a gear to win the set and become 2012 Dutch Open Men’s Pairs Champions.
But well done to the youngsters, who showed great nerve and ability throughout.
Not only did we have fantastic darts and some plenty of snow, but we were also graced with the presence of a much missed darting character: Shaun Greatbatch.
He’s here to celebrate 10 years since he hit his 9 Dart Finish in the Dutch Open Final against Steve Coote and it is absolutely brilliant to see the big man back playing darts. He is looking very well and we all wish him the very best.
That just about wraps up this report of the Dutch Open Pairs. It’s been a great day of darts and hopefully the remainder of the weekend will be just as good.
There is a fantastic field in both the Men’s and Ladies’ tournaments and I am certain that there will be great darts and some big surprises along the way.
Until my next report, stay warm, stay safe, and may your darts fly true!
Mens results click here
Womens results click here
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