Rockets win first title for Rosetown club Newly-crowned darts champions unbeaten in 12 matches
Rosetown Rockets ended Ohaupo¯ ¯ ’s long reign as Te Awamutu Darts champions, breaking through for their first title since forming the Rosetown club nine years ago.
The line-up of David Scott, Greg Chard, Anthony Bentley, Trent Frampton, Ken McDowall and Jamie Te Nana went through the championship round unbeaten, winning all 12 matches, including back-to-back wins over last year’s champions O¯ haupo¯ by 14-9 and 13-10 margins.
“We are stoked to have finally won some silverware,” said McDowall. “Everyone is buzzing. We’ve been runners-up previously but never won a title. We had a few celebratory drinks and a barbecue on Saturday night.”
McDowall said beating Ohaupo¯ ¯ for the second time in the championship was the icing on the cake to a memorable season.
“O¯ haupo¯ have been the powerhouse in Te Awamutu Darts for the past decade. To beat them for a second time when they were out to avenge their earlier loss to us was no mean feat.”
Rosetown Rockets are currently playing out of Waipa¯ Workingmen’s Club awaiting Waipa¯ District Council approval to move into their own clubrooms in Castleton Park.
O¯haupo¯ stalwart Tama Reuben said his team was gutted to have lost, but he was proud of his players who won nine of their 12 matches.
“We didn’t under-estimate a resurgent Rosetown Rockets side that has enjoyed a bloody good season, but we weren’t into it on the night. Full credit to Rosetown Rockets. Going through unbeaten is an outstanding feat.”
Reuben warned that his runners-up team was like a wounded animal.
“We will come back fighting again in 2019,” he said.
Despite Rosetown Rockets wrapping up the championship, there was plenty of pride at stake in their final round clash against O¯ haupo¯ .
The triples were drawn 1-1 before Rosetown Rockets edged ahead 3-2 after the pairs. The first two legs of the singles were both drawn 3-3. O¯ haupo¯ took the lead for the first time in the match (10-9) winning the first two matches in leg three of the singles, only to see Rosetown Rockets win all four remaining matches to clinch the win, 13-10.
Standout performers for the Rockets were McDowall and Te Nana who went through the night unbeaten. Teammate David Scott threw two 180s to end the championship round with seven maximums.
No fewer than 69 180s were thrown in this season’s championship round alone. Scott leading the way with his seven, Paul Cleaver (WMC Dragons) 5, Tama Reuben (O¯ haupo¯ ) 4, Shaun Duval (Misfits) 6 and Rob Day (Tungstens) 5.
WMC Hunters finished third with eight wins, rounding out their championship campaign with a 19-4 win over Rosetown Rebels — despite the opposition’s Shane Foster (2) and Ness Watson throwing 180s.
Tungstens clinched fourth spot (with their sixth win) with a nail-biting 12-11 win over fifth placed Misfits from Joy’s Bar. The match featured four 180s, two from each team by Daryl Wheeler, Athol Robertson (Tungstens) and Shaun Duval, Rhys O’Connor (Misfits).
In division two, runaway champions WMC Dragons recorded their 13th win from 15 matches downing fourth placed Rosetown Thorns 13-2.
The victorious WMC Dragons team was Paul Cleaver, Glen Forde, Ken Jamieson, Shay Coldrick, Paul Cox and Dave Jack.
O¯ haupo¯ Tigers clinched runners-up with a 14-1 romp over bottom of the table RSA Bombers. Tigers finished with a nine win, six loss record.
Bombers’ Jocelyn Dunn and Dragons’ Paul Cleaver threw 180s the previous week against WMC Raiders and third-placed RSA Allsorts respectively.
A further eight were thrown on October 9 by Rhys O’Connor, Shaun Duval (Misfits), Gene Gratwick, Damon Warbrick (WMC Hunters), Ken McDowall (Rosetown Rockets), Doug Sattler, Ken Bardsley (Warriors) and Chad Beazley (O¯ haupo¯ ).
The victorious Rosetown Rockets team in celebratory mood after winning the Te Awamutu Darts championship for the first time. From left: Ken McDowall, Anthony Bentley, Trent Frampton, Courtney Payne, David Scott, Rob Wilson, Steve Picard, Paula Hirst, Greg Chard, Jaime Te Nana.