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55329.  Fri Feb 24, 2006 4:02 pm Reply with quote

It's complicated by the fact the the DRA is only recognised by one of the governing bodies (not the main one.) But both bodies enforce the not-on-the-oche rule. The problems of pre-match performance enhancement are discussed over on the Doping thread.

55332.  Fri Feb 24, 2006 4:09 pm Reply with quote

What's emerging from this is that the darts authorities are interested only in how it looks, and not at all in whether you're actually stoned.

55333.  Fri Feb 24, 2006 4:13 pm Reply with quote

Absolutely - and they never pretended otherwise. It was felt that the Not The Nine O'Clock News image of the sport - a sport in which people smoke and drink during play - was damaging. Why they thought this was never clear to hardliners like me, but they were right and we were wrong: it's unimaginable that the game would be allowed on TV these days if it featured The Ultimate Sin of Ye Deville's Smoke.

55335.  Fri Feb 24, 2006 4:16 pm Reply with quote

eggshaped wrote:
Sid Waddell sang the theme tune to BBC kids show Jossie's Giants.

(though I accept this jaw-smacking factoid is only interesting to people my age +/- 1 year)

He wrote the script, too, didn't he?

55721.  Mon Feb 27, 2006 10:01 am Reply with quote

I thought I’d posted this already, but now can’t find it, so if this is a repeat, apologies.

Statistics released by the Consumer Product Safety Commission in the USA show that in the three and half years up to July 2003, 30 injuries related to darts were reported by participating hospitals.

20 % involved plastic or rubber darts, and 14% involved dartboards rather than darts themselves.

(Note: in the USA, soft-tipped darts are more popular than metal-tipped ones. Very safety-conscious people, the Americans. They also use soft-tipped bullets in a lot of their drive-by shootings.)

One injury covered by the survey occurred when a player slipped on a wet floor in a darts club. Another involved someone injured when they fell out of bed onto a dartboard.

Puncture wounds were the most common type of injury; one in ten reported muscle strains or sprains and another 10% involved “abrasions to the eye.”

A spokesman for the American Darts Organisation said “The fact that a high proportion of the injuries were to minors and occurred at home means there is still a need for education about the proper handling and use of darts to youth participants. This is a goal of the youth programme sponsored by the ADO.“

Source: Darts World, December 2000.

55722.  Mon Feb 27, 2006 10:02 am Reply with quote

More on dangerous sports. According to Sandi Toksvig (writing in the Sunday Telegraph, 15 January 2006), the National Center for Catastrophic Sport Injury Research in the USA has found that cheerleading is the number one cause of serious sports injuries to women. Last year, more than 200,000 cheerleaders “had to attend a medical facility with a cheerleading-related injury.”

55727.  Mon Feb 27, 2006 10:24 am Reply with quote

Did I once read somewhere that crown green bowling is the most dangerous sport death-wise, due to the infirmities of its participants?

55744.  Mon Feb 27, 2006 11:02 am Reply with quote

Makes sense, I suppose - though really I'd expect it to be golf, since that sport is played exclusively by retired people with very red faces.

55937.  Tue Feb 28, 2006 5:40 am Reply with quote

Official word from the BDO: “The year that smoking and drinking was banned from the stage matches of all BDO tournaments was 1988.”

Source: email to MatC from the BDO’s PR, Robert Holmes.

Frederick The Monk
56524.  Thu Mar 02, 2006 7:50 am Reply with quote

Extreme Mullet Touching - the world's most dangerous sport?

56535.  Thu Mar 02, 2006 9:09 am Reply with quote

Well, that's just excellent. Danger Sports needs a thread of its own. Going over waterfalls in barrels, bull-fighting (actually not that dangerous)...

Frederick The Monk
56559.  Thu Mar 02, 2006 10:42 am Reply with quote

Wait a minute, this looks dangerous - Elevator surfing!

58311.  Thu Mar 09, 2006 7:24 am Reply with quote

One of the ways in which the BDO convinced Sport England to reclassify darts as a sport, rather than a game, was by attaching pedometers to two players during the World Championships - England captain Martin “Wolfie” Smith and England international Mervyn “The King” King.

En route to being beaten in the final, Adams walked 23.57 kilometres in practice and match play. “That amounted to a staggering [unfortunate word] 33,310 steps up and down the oche!”

Dr Peter Gregory of the Sports Medicine department of the University of Nottingham, said: “Darts involves physical activity that is of sufficient intensity that many of the general populace would benefit from taking it up on a regular basis.”

Darts is being used by the government as part of its “Get On” campaign aimed at improving numeracy.

Source: Darts World, July 2005.

71861.  Tue May 30, 2006 6:10 am Reply with quote

“Left-arm spinners are prone to jerky actions and many have developed the yips down the years, the saddest case being Derbyshire’s Fred Swarbrook. Fred was a terminal case until some psychologist advised him to carry a smooth pebble in his pocket and give it a nerve-soothing rub before every ball. One day, however, the yips returned with a vengeance, and as delivery after delivery squirted straight up into the air, a team-mate (the former England batsman David Steele) piped up: ‘Fred. Try putting the ball in your pocket and bowling the pebble instead’.”
- Daily Telegraph, 29 May 2006

97707.  Fri Sep 29, 2006 6:57 am Reply with quote

The Zone:

An interesting article in The Daily Telegraph, 28 September 2006, discusses Mark Ramprakash’s topping of the batting averages in English county cricket for the 2006 season. It was a remarkable performance from the Surrey player: he finished the summer with an average of 103.54, one of only five men ever to have a 3-figure average: the others were Don Bradman, Geoff Boycott (twice), Graham Gooch and Damien Martyn.

Simon Briggs, writer of this piece, says that a common theme of all five is “an image of total absorption and unflappability. The best batsmen play in a bubble: as Mike Atherton wrote of his famous unbeaten 185 at Johannesburg, ‘I was in an almost trance-like state.’ But while Atherton reckoned he entered ‘the zone’ only once in his whole career, Graham Gooch was a master at controlling his mental state.”

Briggs also points out that the batsmen in that list were “mature” in cricketing terms; their ages were 30, 30, 38, 37, 29 and 37.

He goes on: “The very best players achieve a level of emotional serenity that would impress a Zen Buddhist. This equanimity is based on long years of dealing with disappointment. Failure is a given for a batsman: everyone gets out.”

Ramps partly explains his amazing year by his lack of practice. A famously “tightly wound personality” he took last winter off entirely, and admitted he was not looking forward to the beginning of the 2006 season. In addition, he presumably no longer has any hopes of playing again for England.

Briggs ends by quoting Timothy Gallwey in ‘The Inner Game of Tennis’: “The secret to winning any game lies in not trying too hard.”


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