New blood

September 09, 2017

The Seymour District Darts Association is more than half-way through its winter season and the occasion was marked by the competition’s two newest sides going head-to-head for the second time this season recently.

The Bottom Pub Pirates, hailing from The Broadford Hotel, played host to the in-form Prince of Wales 26ers, with the home team getting the win by the closest of margins, a 6-5 victory.

26ers captain Shannon Jackson, who previously played for the successful Avenel Steeltips, decided to nominate a new side to the league due to a number of friends taking interest in playing darts with him, and he was excited to see how both teams had progressed since they last met in round one.

‘‘When we first met earlier this season, I think the nerves got the better of both sides and the 7-4 result in our favour was not a true indication of where both sides were at,’’ Jackson said.

‘‘Since then both ourselves and the Pirates have upset a few teams on the scoreboard and considering both sides are comprised of mostly first or second season players we can only hope it gets better from here.’’

Pirates captain, ex Railway Renegades gun Dan Kilroy, can’t speak highly enough of his team-mates who are improving on a week-to-week basis.

‘‘We did not have too much expectations heading into the season,’’ Kilroy said.

‘‘With most of our team having no more than one season experience, our aim was purely on having fun with some quality people.

‘‘It is awesome to see the scores get higher on a weekly basis, with a couple of wins on the board against experienced sides.’’

The expansion did not end with both teams’ core group of four players. Both sides have picked up multiple players, friends and family who want to get in on the action.

With the Seymour District Darts Association looking to expand beyond its current 10 teams, this only bodes well for the future.

Ben Macpherson joined the 26ers this season despite never picking up a dart before in his life.

‘‘I watched mates play a few times over the last few seasons down at the local and thought it looked like a bit of fun,’’ Macpherson said.

‘‘When Shannon asked me to fill in for the 26ers this season, I couldn’t get down to the pub quick enough.’’

When asked what it was that keeps him playing every week, Macpherson’s answer was simple.

‘‘Where else could it be socially acceptable to go out and have a beer and hang out with my good mates on a Monday night?’’ he said.

‘‘The atmosphere on a darts night is always fun and regardless of who or where we are playing, my team-mates and opposition have been very welcoming.’’

The SDDA has a rich and proud history going back many decades and at one stage had more than 20 teams over multiple divisions.

There have previously been teams hosted as far south as Wallan and north up to Euroa and Nagambie.

Currently there are 10 teams from Broadford, Seymour and Avenel.

Going forward, the association hopes to return to its glory days, bringing back multiple divisions and a stronger presence in the community.

‘‘There has never been such an emphasis on darts in Australia as there is right now,’’ Jackson said.

‘‘With the coverage of the big competitions around the world and the emergence of young Aussie superstars such as Kyle Anderson and Corey Cadby, there has never been a better time for people, both young and old, to take up darts.’’

For any players wanting to either get back into darts after some time off or step up for the first time, head to www.seymourdistrict and express your interest.

With teams needing players for the remainder of the season and new sides starting next season, there is bound to be spots available for players of all skill levels.

— Shannon Jackson

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