Soham’s leading darting ace Brett Claydon was crowned Stowmarket Darts Grand Prix champion after beating Stephen Burton 5-4 in the final on Saturday evening, writes Alex Moss.
Claydon went into the 16-player finals event —held at Stowmarket Town Football Club — in red-hot form after winning the final three weeks of the competition to finish second in the overall points standings.
The former PDC Challenge Tour winner began his bid for glory in style as he averaged 90.18 in a 3-0 win over Ollie Hammond in the last 16, before whitewashing Kyle Bloomfield by the same scoreline with a 93.93 average to reach the semi-finals.
Claydon then went on to average 83.70 in a 4-2 victory at the expense of Tony Lincoln to reach the final, where he edged past 2016 champion Burton in a last-leg decider, with an 86.94 average enough to get him over the line.
Burton, who is a current PDC tour card holder, went into the finals as the top seed after finishing top of the points table, and began his title defence with 3-0 wins over Ian Randles and Richard Watson to progress to the semi-finals.
A 4-3 triumph against Wayne Hammond in the last four saw him squeeze through to the final, where he was beaten by Claydon in a final-leg shoot-out to be denied back-to-back Stowmarket Darts Grand Prix titles.
As well as posting the highest average of the night, with his 93.93 three-dart average in the quarter-finals, Claydon also had the highest checkout too, with a 120 finish on his way to victory.