Home Darts Darts: #Teamrileys at the 2018 UK Open – A Review

Darts: #Teamrileys at the 2018 UK Open – A Review


As the dust settles on one of the most memorable UK Opens ever held, we take the chance to reflect on how Team Rileys fared at the 2018 FA Cup of Darts.

Paul Hogan


We of course start with Paul Hogan who has enjoyed such incredible success at this event over the years.

The Basingstoke based player reached the 2nd day of action for the third time in his career.

He was pushed all the way by fellow Rileys Qualifier Darren Brown in the first round. Brown took the opening leg but Hogan rattled off the next five. Incredibly Brown had either had shots at a double or was on a double in all 5 legs which Hogan won. Brown rocketed back however taking out the next four legs in 16, 15, 13 and 13. Hogan would win the leg decider in 15 darts however to scrape home. Brown averaged 92.9 (averaging over 104 with the first nine) to Hogan’s 80.2 in a standout match from the first round.

Benefitting from a bye in the 2nd round, Hogan then overcame Paul Nicholson in the evening session to be the only Rileys qualifier to make the 2nd day’s action. He then vanquished Michael van Gerwen’s conqueror Jeffrey de Zwaan 10-8 averaging 97.6. Leading 9-8 against Gerwyn Price, Hogan would narrowly miss out on a place in the last eight, with Price winning the final two legs.

On the Sunday, Hogan travelled back to Berkshire to play for his County where he promptly averaged over 109 in his win. He will surely be one to watch at this weekend’s Isle of Man Darts Festival.

The Best of the Rest

Darryl Pilgrim

In addition to Hogan, four Rileys Qualifiers made the 3rd round money stage, picking up £1750, for many of them its the biggest pay day of their careers.

UK Open ever present Alex Roy made the third round for the third year in a row. After overcoming old adversary Mark Walsh (who was playing in a hoodie) 6-2, the Middlesex charity worker then battled past Toni Alcinas 6-4 live on ITV4. That earned him a clash with Gerwyn Price, and despite quickly falling 5-1 down, drew on all his experience and rallied to level at five apiece. Price would take five of the next six legs however to prevail.

Croydon’s Darryl Pilgrim banished the memories from 12 months ago when he lost in the opening round against Ben Green having led 3-0. This time round though, he made light work of fellow Rileys Qualifier Ian Jopling and held his never against Dutch youngster Geert Nentjes 6-4 which got one journalist particularly excited…

He then pushed Steve West all the way in the third round, having been 4-1 down he won five straight legs to lead 6-4. The final leg proved to be outrageous, with three maximums, two for West and one for Pilgrim, with West winning in 12 darts.

David Airey and former Lakeside Youth finalist Harry Ward were the other members of #teamrileys to make the money round after two solid wins each.

Airey hit two 180s in a ding dong battle with fellow qualifier Benjamin McClelland where he survived 6-4 after a rally from the latter who was 4-1 down. But Airey, who qualified from Rileys Chester, stepped it up a gear in the 2nd round against Stuart Kellett, averaging 88.5 and winning six legs in a row including a 12 darter. He would eventually lose to Jason Lowe 10-3.


Youngster Harry Ward breezed through his opening two games for the loss of just one leg, first dispatching fellow Rileys Qualifier Dan Lee 6-0, and then overcoming another bright young prospect in the form of Ted Evetts 6-1. Evetts was sat on a double in five of the six legs which Ward won. He couldn’t reproduce that form however against the ever improving Chris Dobey, who himself was a Rileys Qualifier from 2014.

Storm Emma

This tournament will of course always be remembered for the weather. Chris Lacey, Craig Winstanley, Andrew Davidson, Scott Robertson and Mark Rice were all forced to withdraw from the competition due to the adverse conditions.

Other Results


First Round

John Part 6-2 John Morris

Alex Roy 6-2 Mark Walsh

Michael Burgoine Bye (Andrew Davidson withdrew)

Rene Eidams 6-4 Andrew Johnson

Michael Barnard Bye (Scott Robertson withdrew)

Andrew Pullen Bye (Mark Rice withdrew)

Michael Rasztovits 6-3 Simon Tate

Luke Humphries 6-0 Liam Kelly

Harry Ward 6-0 Daniel Lee

Darryl Pilgrim 6-2 Ian Jopling

Joe Davis 6-5 Dan Read

David Airey 6-4 Benjamin McClelland

Martin Biggs Bye (Chris Lacey withdrew)

Ricky Evans 6-1 Andreas Hajiminia

Cody Harris 6-1 Tony Mitchell

Mark Craddock Bye (Craig Winstanley withdrew)

Andy Hamilton Bye (William O’Connor withdrew)

Paul Whitworth 6-3 Martin Atkins

Paul Hogan 6-5 Darren Brown

Ron Meulenkamp 6-4 Andy Hibbert

Jason Mold 6-5 Prakash Jiwa

John Scott 6-4 Darren Johnson

Second Round


Alex Roy 6-4 Toni Alcinas

Vincent van der Voort 6-3 Martin Biggs

Paul Hogan Bye (John Goldie withdrew)

David Airey 6-1 Stuart Kellett

Nathan Rafferty 6-3 Jason Mold

Robert Owen 6-4 Michael Burgoine

Jermaine Wattimena 6-0 Andy Hamilton

Jason Lowe 6-4 John Scott

Nathan Aspinall 6-3 Andrew Pullen

Ron Meulenkamp 6-1 Joe Davis

John Part 6-0 Paul Whitworth

Harry Ward 6-1 Ted Evetts

Ryan Meikle 6-4 Mark Craddock

Darryl Pilgrim 6-4 Geert Nentjes

LISTEN TO A PODCAST OF RILEYS UK OPEN QUALIFIERS – featuring Alex Roy, John Ferrell, Morgan Smith, Lionel Sams, Dave Parletti, Rhys Hayden, Michael Burgoine, Darryl Pilgrim, Joe Davis and John Scott.


Thank you to everyone who took part in the Rileys UK Open Qualifiers!

Matthew Kiernan Multimedia Journalist. Passionate about darts.