Just Darts Since 2009
Week #10 – Good Strokes
April 29, 2012Posted by on
No stats have been sent to us yet, probably because there are teams still making up missed games. The main thing is that the top spot in the standings won’t change. We took our division this season.
A few notes about the match:
Tracks has gone from one of the worst places to play darts to one of the best, simply by removing some boards. They used to have six or seven matches going on every Tuesday, and there simply wasn’t room for all of the players. With three boards, there was plenty of space, and those who weren’t playing could actually watch the match. The staff is as friendly and attentive as ever, so it’ll be a place I’ll be looking forward to visiting again.
Good Strokes are a terrific bunch of guys. They were very gracious in defeat, and effusive in their praise for our play. I think maybe they’d be a better team if they had a worse attitude. I had a very good 501 game early, and it seemed like after that they didn’t believe they could beat me. (They did, at least in the 701 game.) If they had gotten angry instead, they might have stepped up their game more. Darts is such a mental game and a test of confidence as much as skill, that a shift from “I can’t beat that guy” to “I’ll show him” could have made a lot of difference. The fact is, I was flukey good that night, and I could have followed up my good games with terrible ones, but the Strokes team kept pumping up my confidence. I’m not saying they should have been jerks, but sometimes a little chip on your shoulder can improve your odds of success.
I tried to reciprocate with the good vibes. (At least after we had sewn up the division.) Although it’s not unusual for me to give pointers to the other team’s less experienced players, this may have been the first time I’ve ever given an opponent a pep talk during a match. I like these guys, and didn’t want to see them get too down on themselves. (Again, after the division was won.) Of course, I tried to win every game after that, but I didn’t mind seeing them win the 701 game at the end, especially given that the guy who won it shot an impressive score. They’re in the playoffs too, and I’d like to see good guys do well.
One final thought about attitude: it’s simply not in my nature to be very demonstrative when I’m throwing well. I don’t go in for shouting or jumping up and down or pumping my fist. I don’t like being in the spotlight, and I don’t like that kind of behavior in others. I also don’t believe in giving the other team any extra incentive to want to beat you. If they like you, it’s harder for them to muster up the killer instinct. That may make my behavior seem more calculated than it is, though. It’s just a positive side effect of what I do naturally.
The above probably makes it sound like I single-handedly won the night, but that couldn’t be further from the truth. This last match of the regular season saw the whole team play better than we have for ages. Meister was on fire, especially in cricket, where he shot something like a 3.7 in one game. Red elevated his game in both cricket and 501, and Vulture…
Well, Vulture lived up to his nickname in the first game of the match, where he had me frozen out for several rounds before winning the game himself. It’s hard to get mad at your partner when he ends up winning. Then, as he warmed up (and remember that he didn’t play last week), he really caught fire. There was no respite for the opposition, no weak link to target. If we can play anywhere near this well in the playoffs, we’ll be a formidable team.
Final socre: a 9-4 win.