Column #HR79 Disappointed “Phil”istines

Wednesday, November 7, 2012
Column HR79
Disappointed “Phil”istines

Years ago, before the Old Dart Coach was declared persona non grata by the self-appointed Grand Poobahs of darts, he included in his baggage for his winter solace visit to London a box of Dutch Master cigars. They were a gift for a fellow named Smitty who toiled in the fields for the BDO. Later when the ODC got the cigar habit himself – filthy pig – he tried a Dutch Master. One smoke and he jumped back to his favorite Anthony & Cleopatra sticks. He smokes only the Cleopatra part for reasons that should be oblivious.

Dutch Masters? There’s Van Gough, Vermeer, Rembrandt. Now you can add the name of Whitlock. “Whitlock?”

“What did he ever paint?” you axe.

How about a 6-1 keister-kicking masterpiece against fellow Aussie Paul Nicholson thereby becoming the 2012 Dutch Masters Dart Champion. Whitlock could be called a European Master also as he annexed that title earlier. One can imagine the Nuland, Netherlands Town Crier gliding through the canals on his jet ski yelling, “Whitlock, new Dutch Master… Whitlock, new Dutch Master!”

The Crier’s action probably caused Vermeer to turn to Rembrandt and say, “How about that Whitlock?” as Van Gough shouted, “WHAT?” One eared old coot.

The win for Whitlock was worth £15,000 from a prize fund of £82,100. The local wooden shoe guys had high hopes for their excellent stable of professional darters as they marched through the first round like punters window shopping in Amsterdam’s De Wallen district. Then came the Saturday Night Massacre at the Van Der Valk Hotel.

It certainly wasn’t Albert Anastasia getting whacked on October 25, 1957 in New York’s Park Sheraton Hotel by the brothers Gallo but it was just as effective. Gone from the scene were Vincent van der Voort (5-6 to Aaron Monk), Michael van Gerwen (4-6 to Paul Nicholson), Raymond van Barneveld (5-6 to Johnny Haines) and Co Stompe (3-6 to Phil Taylor). The “vans” disappeared from the scene like vans from a swap meet when Immigrations shows up.

On Sunday it was the “Phil”istines who were up in arms crying their baby hearts out. The Dutch had drowned their sorrows in copious amounts of lager, turning their love and affection to team Ajax. Pronounced “Eye-Ax.” They would draw with Feyenoord.

The “Phil”istines saw hero King Philip Douglas Taylor get whacked by Wayne Jones 6-5. After falling behind 0-2 Taylor came back to level. Jones eradicated 161 for a 3-2 lead and looked on his way to a 2 leg lead when he started with a 180. Not to be as King Phil leveled once again at 3 with a nifty 11-darter. But then all 11-darters are nifty. Taylor would then lead 4-3 on double 4 only to have Jones answer with his own 11-darter. With the match level Taylor got one away from the win with double 7. A 78-out by Jones forced the 11th leg. Jones got to the finish first but missed double tops with a single 5. Wanker. But from 35 he got ‘er done for the win.

For the second major in a row Taylor had darts to win. Last out, it was double 16 with five darts in hand. Here it was double 12 which he missed with 3. When was the last time that Taylor missed 8 darts at a double? Any double. Okay, rhetorical question and not nearly up to his standard of the Aflac question of the day. So don’t cue the Duck.

As so often with those that conquer Taylor, Wayne Jones went out next round in the semis 6-3 to Paul Nicholson as Simon Whitlock dispatched Kim Huybrechts 6-1. In total, Whitlock was impressive going through the tournament 30-10 which deserves a bucket full of “Attaboys” with biscuits, gravy and jalapenos.

The “Phil”istines – distant relatives to the New York, Miami Beach, Tottenham, and Beverly Hills Steens – were unhappy when King Phil was dethroned. They were then joined by the Wongs, Lees, and at least one Lim of Hong Kong. Listening closely you could hear them yelling, Waaa the flock is going on?”

The cause of this consternation was that a contingent of 6 Yanks, out of 128, showed up for the latest stage of the “World Soft Darts Championship” in Hong Kong. Two made it to the top four. Ray Carver got the win worth a little more than $12,000 in currency of the United States of American backed by the “full faith and credit” of the People’s Republic of China. That would be 100,000 Hong Kong dollars. Carver, who won a stage last year, defeated defending series champion Paul Lim in the finals.

Filing out the top 4 at joint 3rd/4th were Ronald Briones (Philippines) and “Big Daddy” Darin Young for the USA. There was a time in darts when conspiracy theorists would nod their heads knowingly while talking about a the Yanks’ “dodgy draw.”

“Can’t let two Yanks in the final.”

That dog won’t hunt as Young would have been in the finals but he lost to Paul Lim. Lim, as the defending champion of the series, will get a spot in the PDC World Professional Finals at Alexandra Palace in London. One wonders if the PDC will extend the same “entrance” into the World Pro to the champions from Arachnid and Merit. Unless you’re into Glenn Quagmire autoerotism I wouldn’t hold your breath.

One reader, who is one smart dude, no doubt is at his computer to point out that the real Philistines – also called the Sea People – were only about 25-30,000 in number with no recorded language. They lived in 11th and 12th centuries BC with many of them killed by Sampson. This had to be Sampson before he got his locks shorn by that bitch Delilah. She would later be made famous when Tom Jones – whose Fruit of the Looms were packed with a rolled up sock – sang “Oh My Delilah.”

Today’s “Phil”istines are loyal subjects of Philip Douglas Taylor. They have a language and a song of their own and number in the millions. They would love to have a go at Delilah or any female of any name. They had a week off while the other pros were at Crawley for a Players event. Others bypassed the event to “rest up” for the William Hill Grand Slam. Yeah, lifting them darts is hard work.

“Wimps.”

Simon Whitlock continued his “Take That You POM Bastards Tour!” winning one of the two events at Crawley. The other event was won by Michael van Gerwen . Are you seeing a pattern here? Seems that farangs are winning a lot lately. Next up is the £400,000 William Hill Grand Slam of Darts which kicks off a 9-day run at the Wolverhampton Civic Hall on November 10. Added to the roster of players is the reigning BDO champ Christian Kist for whatever that’s worth. The event, as many PDC events are, is innovative in that it’s played round-robin in groups before the knockout second round.

The “Phil”istines will be rooting and singing for reigning champion Phil Taylor with the punters maybe going all in for Simon “The Assassin” Whitlock. He’s been issued the 007 designation as bodies have been left in his wake lately. Whitlock, who is known for his great three-dart finishes and long braided pony tail might heed the advice of the ODC.

“If you meet a chick named Delilah run like hell.”

If Whitlock is 007 then what’s the numerical designation for the Old Dart Coach? He carries 001-005 which allows him to “whine, bitch, offer unsolicited advice, be Mr. Know-it-all, and drink beer.” All of those tasks he fulfills with ridiculous ease. Natural talent always wins out and practice doesn’t hurt.

Stay thirsty my friends.

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Howie Reed
The one and only Howie Reed (the Old Dart Coach) goes back decades with the legends of our sport - he knows where the skeletons are buried. Just ask any of the ADO and WDF old-timers! His widely popular column, Toeing the Oche, is a must-read.

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