Monday, 24 December 2018

Clarity of thought 2 - Electric Boogaloo

As we've finally got an off day, I thought I'd highlight a couple of dumb things that I've seen over the past few days. Firstly, from Norris against Lennon:


Alan's had a very good start to the leg to leave 86 after nine darts, and despite a 180, Lennon is not on a finish. Now here, Norris starts on 18's - this is fine, it's the only target (other than a questionable shot at bull) that leaves you a sensible double if you hit. You miss, that's fine, now you leave 68. Now Norris is a tops and 10's guy, so the shot here ought to be treble 16 - leave yourself double 10 if you hit, or single twelve to return on tops if you don't. Or you could go treble 20 for double 4, treble 12 for double 16, there's a bunch of sane ways you can go. Except that Norris stays on 18's. This of course is fine - if you either really, really love double seven, or need to go for the bull - which he doesn't need to as Lennon's not on an outshot, and then he doesn't go for it regardless (I should note that I didn't actually watch this game, and can't verify personally that it wasn't actually a shot at the bull, but questioning it on Twitter someone said it was a setup shot). So why the hell doesn't Norris switch after the first dart if you're not going to go for the bull?

Then we have this piece of genius:


Here we've got everyone's favourite double sixteen specialist Mervyn King getting away with a really questionable piece of shot selection on his leg winning visit. Now I'm not questioning the choice of the initial dart, although that is extremely dubious (and something that I thought he'd taken out of his game, but despite seeming to recall him going the 20's route in some recent game, I can't for the life of me find where it took place) - it's what he does after that. You can dislike tops all you like and love double sixteen all you like, to make that first choice fine you'd better be incredible at hitting double sixteen - and if he is, then surely the play with 64 left is to go double-double? You can't go for a dart to leave a preferred target and then wuss out of shooting at it just because you need to hit it twice, it's more or less the same principle as going for tops-tops if you miss first dart at 100. You've made a statement, follow through on it.

Merry Christmas to all readers, I should be back some time on Boxing Day to look at the first couple of round 4 matches, which look to be the Anderson and van Gerwen games. I'll probably do the other two games that are set up already (the Wade and Chisnall games) simply because it makes sense to do one half one day and the other half once we know who's playing who after the games on the 27th.

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