Thatch claim Murdoch Shield

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There was a break in the League programme this week for the annual Alan Murdoch Memorial Shield which this year was played in Coleraine Social Club.

There was a great turn-out with 13 teams entering the 5-a-side charity competition this year and there was no shortage of top darts on show.

Last year’s winners Swifts A were drawn against Railway Arms in the first round with Swifts A winning 3-1 before going on to defeat Villa 3-0 putting them into the semi-finals. Thatch Flights made light work of their first round match defeating Social Club 3-0 before losing out 3-1 to Thatch Rovers who would go on to play Swifts A in the semi-final.

Scotch House A defeated Berthas B in their first round match while Scotch House B lost 3-1 to Villa/Floyds mixed team. Scotch House A however went on to defeat the Villa/Floyds team booking their place in the semi-final. Swifts B came through their first round match with Berthas A winning 3-0 but had no answer when they came up against Sperrin Flights losing 3-0 as Sperrin moved into the semis also.

The first semi-final saw last year’s winners Swifts A come up against Thatch Rovers and it was the holders who took the lead through W.McKendry defeating H.Wilson. Thatch levelled the match with C.Watson beating M.Barr before J.Moore stunned the Swifts defeating D.Glenn to put the Thatch 2-1 up. J.Donnelly then stepped up to defeat D.Norton and knock the holders out of the competition.

The second semi-final saw last year’s League champions face Scotch House A. Scotch House took the early advantage here with the young C.Greer making short work in defeating the experienced G.Watton. Sperrin hit back with A.Boyd taking out R.McKeown before B.McLaughlin defeating J.Elliott to put Sperrin 2-1 up. Scotch House then fought back with their young county star M.Greer defeating J.McLaughlin to take the match to the deciding game where S.Pinkerton managed to hold his nerve to defeat R.McMullan and put Sperrin into the Final.

The final again was a close match between the top two teams in the league. Thatch took the lead here through J.Moore who beat A.Boyd. Sperrin took the next with B.McLaughlin defeating O.McLaughlin but found themselves trailing again after the third game where J.Donnelly took out G.Watton. S.Pinkerton then levelled the match once more defeating C.Watson to take the match to the fifth and final game where H.Wilson would play J.McLaughlin. In a real nail-biter of a game that went to a deciding leg it was H.Wilson for the Thatch who came out on top giving Thatch the first silverware of the year.

The League would like to thank all those who turned up and supported this event making it a great night of darts for all involved with over £350 raised for charity on the night.

Fixtures Friday 7 December: Villa Swifts v Railway Arms; Scotch House v Villa; Floyds A v Thatch; Berthas v Kellys Inn; Sperriin Flights v Floyds B; Social Club v Cooleys