The eagerly anticipated new-look season started last night, with the Barbarians playing at their home venue, Frank's Place, against the newly formed Samurai team. Now with three divisions, the Beijing International Darts League is looking feistier than ever, and the Barbs were looking to hit the ground running with a victory against the Japanese.
Things started brightly for the Barbs, with a fine double-1 close in the 1,001 team game from Jamie. He loves the double-1, thanks to the amount of practice he gets at it. 3-0 to the Barbs!
As we went into the six singles games we looked good for a victory, but Zhang Ling's valiant defeat against the Samurai master got the opposition back into it. Then Jamie stepped up once again to close-out his singles and regain the Barbarians' three-point lead. Up next was Captain Green, who despite some shaky arrows and the pressure of not wanting to lose to a girl, finally managed to close out on a double-10. Jiang Yi then had a tough game against the Samurai captain before Ivy and Mike both finished out their singles games with a double-19 and double-9 respectively. 11-4 to the Barbs!
At this point things were looking pretty rosy, and the Barbarians needed just one more win to ensure at least a tie on the night. With the doubles games next, the Barbs were confident of taking something home with them. Up stepped the big guns: Big Nuts and the "on-fire for one night only" Jamie Wilson. Sadly, the Japanese Samurai master was too hot to handle once again; his big darts taking down our big two. The due of Captain Green and Maria fared no better, and completely random showing of darts from the opposition made it a particularly tough defeat to swallow. With victory now in the balance, it was left to Mike and Ivy to save our bacon against the spirited Japanese. Our bacon was saved with Ivy's double-2, and the Barbs led 14-10.
In the final game of the evening, Mickey Mouse proved one step too far for the Barbs, as the beer started to take effect and darts began missing their mark. In the end, the Samurai finished with relative ease to tie the game 14-14. All in all, a satisfactory start to the long season ahead.
Some of us hadn't had enough darts, yet, and so a money game was organized. The team was warmly joined by Barbarians Football 11s manager (and former Barbarian Darts heavyweight), Mr. Keith Bradbury, as well as Ali, a Beijing newcomer. With 120 bob in the pot, all hands were on deck as people dropped by the wayside. In the end, it was the returning Mike who had the last laugh, capping off a fine night's performance.
Next up: the Flying Cocktails @ Frank's Place, Thursday @ 8pm.