Lenny Boyle; The Dart Heard Round The World
Team Deano read one of the recent darts articles written by the talented (and very funny) #dartsfamily legend that is Lenny Boyle (@Lenny_Boyle), and we enjoyed it so much, we got permission to post it here! Lenny writes for the Mirror, and his own darts blog; http://www.tectonictungsten.com/ – and it’s there we read the following…
What do you get when you take two buddies, who practice together regularly. One is half blind with an eye complaint, hasn’t played in five weeks, the other making his tournament debut. What do you get when you toss two unlikely characters like that into the Winter Gardens on a Tuesday night?
You get Dean Winstanley vs. Gary Anderson.
You get one of the best matches ever to have graced the Winter Gardens.
You get perhaps the greatest single dart ever witnessed by human beings.
You get the most entertaining blockbuster of the summer. Shut up Batman fans.
You get The Dart Heard Round The World.
Dean Winstanley hit a 180 with his first throw of the match. And that’s about all that can be said for Deano the first half of the match. He buckled under the weight of Anderson’s darts. he had his chances but Ando’s eye problem seemed nothing more than a tabloid rumour; that is; made up, unsubstantiated, a fabrication.
How could there possibly be anything wrong with Ando’s eyes when he’s chucking darts like that?
Anderson surged to 5-0. And then the space time continuum collapsed around our ears and darts fans entered the twilight zone.
Because what followed was bizarre, odd, slightly deranged and utterly out of step with reality.
We saw things you people wouldn’t believe.
Like Anderson leaving five and going madhouse, single one, madhouse. Two in the madhouse. Darts fans would be joining those darts in their local asylum for the criminally insane by the end of the match. It sent us loopy.
The isn’t a proper match report. The game wouldn’t be served by a dull recitation of scores, checkouts and finishes. That’s not how memory works. Images from Winstanley vs. Anderson 2012 will remain for a lifetime. Or at least deserve to.
And more for the We Saw Things You People Wouldn’t Believe Category:
The dart we like to call: The Dart Heard Round The World. In the eighteenth leg, at 9-8 Anderson; Deano hit a 180 in the leg, but Anderson was ahead leaving himself eight for the match.
Up he stepped. We were about to see another thing you people wouldn’t believe. Dean Winstanley had 82 left.
82 to stay in the tournament. He hit single twenty, twenty at the very lowest portion of the twenty. A twenty so barely within the twenty segment it was an honorary citizen of the green 25 bit. A twenty so low Simon Whitlock would have called it down under.
A twenty so low it was looking for Chilean miners. It was very low. Have I mentioned it was low? It was low. Then he hit a twelve. But the twenty was so low it utterly blocked the bullseye. Which was a shame because that was precisely the target Dean Winstanley had to hit to remain in the tournament.
THE THING WAS BLOCKED.
A dart so impossible to hit that Sid Waddell, in a similar scenario involving Phil Taylor, on a different night, intoned, “Annie Oakley couldn’t hit this with the best rifle but THE POWER [voice goes hysterical, he laughs a bit] CAN”
Deano’s bull looked if anything marginally more impossible to hit. But he hit it.
The World slipped off its axis. We were in a strange alternate dimension where we witnessed the impossible so frequently it became routine. The laws of physics bent under the pressure of a darts players will.
The Dart Heard Round The World.
It was a back and forth tussle into a tie break after that but the result was inevitable.
This match can be looked at from the vantage point of another Anderson collapse. Another Ando flirtation with the psychological ravages of a sport that has no mercy for the mind. You can look at it like that.
But. Come on.
Deano did something magical. Something so impossibly astonishing that the match was his from that moment. He chose to astound. He had to astound. It was astound or pack his bags.
His only option was to do something impossible or perish in the effort.
The Dart Heard Round The World
Thanks again to Lenny for giving permission to use the article. You can read more of his tungsten musings here.