David Platt completed the field for the Hamilton Darts Masters in New 8 with a 6-3 victory over Mike Bonser on the final day of qualifiers for 2019 Oceanic World Series of Darts Masters events at the Warilla Bowls and Recreation Club on Sunday.
The quarter final line up demonstrated the quality of the field who competed throughout the day. Platt took out Robbie King with a 5-3 win whilst Bonser eliminated Barry Jouannet Junior 5-1. The most comprehensive win of the stage went to Mick Lacey who defeated Brendon McCausland 5-0. The final match went in the favour of Tim Pusey who beat Willy Kimura 5-3. Half the competitors in the last eight had previously qualified for other World Series of Darts events in 2019.
The first semi final saw Platt match up against Lacey. The opening leg saw some poor darts thrown but eventually Platt held his throw before better demonstrating his class in winning each of the next two legs with 14 darts. Lacey then held throw before Platt did the same to move within a leg of the match. Platt then broke Lacey to win with a 171 third visit to the oche setting up a 12 dart leg (a ten darter had been on offer.) The final score reading 5 - 1 to Platt.
The second match of the same stage saw both players break the opening throw of their opponent before Bonser held his throw in the third leg. He then broke the Pusey throw only for his opponent to break straight back. Bonser broke Pusey for the third time in match (the Western Australian failed to hold any his throws in this match) but this time Bonser was able to hold his own throw (in 15 darts) to take out the match 5 – 2.
The final saw two players line up who had previous World Series of Darts Experience in Australia. Platt took the earlier momentum as he broke his opponent thanks to a 12 dart leg. As comprehensive as that leg was Bonser managed to break straight back. Platt then broke once more and this time in the fourth leg was able to hold throw to take a three leg lead. The lead quickly closed up as Bonser held throw and then broke the Platt throw for a second time. Bonser could not win three legs in a row though and Platt consolidated this further break by holding his throw to move within a leg of the match. Bonser missed a leg dart in the ninth leg and could only watch as Platt converted 66 on his next visit to take the match and the final spot on the World Series of Darts stage in Hamilton New Zealand.
Platt has actually played in Auckland before as part of the World Series of Darts program (he has also represented in Sydney, Perth and Melbourne) but was delighted to go to a new venue in New Zealand, Hamilton, by winning such a tough match. “I am glad to get back into the winners circle. A couple of semi finals and a final this week, I had to regroup and do what I know I can do, win a game of darts. It was an unusual final in that we were both readjusting throughout the match but I managed that part of the game. You need a game plan when you play Mike Bonser because if you have one misstep he will beat you, no ifs or buts. I look forward to playing in the World Series of Darts once again, I know what to expect and want to perform at my best on that stage. I know I can do better than I have done in the past at that level and will be aiming to put up my best game.”