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Paul Gallagher beats Charlie Austin to Darts from Home Footballers Special crown – Sky Sports

The Home Tour continues live on the Sky Sports app from 7:30pm on Sunday, with Krzysztof Ratajski in action

Last Updated: 10/05/20 5:10pm

Paul Gallagher won all three of his matches to top the group

Preston North End’s Paul Gallagher put his talents at the oche on display as he won all three games to clinch the PDC Darts from Home Footballers Special title.

Competing in aid of the NHS, Gallagher cruised to a win over West Brom’s Charlie Austin in his opener before seeing off Leicester City’s James Maddison and wrapping up the group against West Ham’s Declan Rice.

“I’m over the moon, it’s all about finishing,” Gallagher joked. “I take my hat off to the darts players, I was struggling in my living room with nobody near me. They make it look easy.”

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Austin took second place courtesy of a 2-1 comeback win over Maddison, who was on Saturday crowned ePremier League Invitational champion having beaten Sheffield United’s John Egan 5-1 in the final.

“I’m happy but I was rubbish all day and I’ve walked into Gally (Gallagher) throwing what he did, what am I meant to do?” said Austin. “I’m happy with that, second place. I hope people watched the afternoon and donated to what is a good cause.”

Footballers Special table

Pts Legs +/-
Paul Gallagher 6 +5
Charlie Austin 4 +1
James Maddison 2 -1
Declan Rice 0 -5

PDC Home Tour – Footballers Special results (best of three legs)

Declan Rice 0-2 Charlie Austin
Paul Gallagher 2-0 Charlie Austin
James Maddison 1-2 Declan Rice
James Maddison 1-2 Paul Gallagher
Paul Gallagher 2-0 Declan Rice
Charlie Austin 2-1 James Maddison

It was Rice who started strongly in his opener against Austin as he averaged 93 after his opening two visits of the first leg, before struggling to dispatch 16 as both ran into double trouble, the West Ham man busting six times.

Austin, having hit just five on his first visit of the game, eventually pinned double one for the lead before taking out double four to seal the second and decisive leg.

Gallagher asserted himself as the man to beat as he fired a 127 before checking out 108 to claim the first leg against Austin in nine darts. The 35-year-old followed it up with a 140 visit in the second leg before finishing on 54 to wrap up the game with a 75 average.

The gaffer normally has to send us to bed because it gets a bit late, but we have a good go at the darts. Jamie Vardy is very good. We love the darts at Leicester.

Maddison on playing darts with his Leicester team-mates

Maddison, who started his opener with a visit of three, came from one leg down to beat Rice 2-1 thanks to a double five to claim a 31-dart second leg followed by a game-winning double one.

“I watched him (Rice) in the first game, I watched him very closely against Chaz and I knew on the doubles he absolutely crumbles,” said the former Norwich City man.

It was a battle for top spot next when Gallagher came from a leg down against Maddison to win 2-1 after finishing on 24 to leave himself one victory away from the group.

He did just that with a 2-0 win over Rice, who scored well but again ran into problems on the doubles, to complete the clean sweep and lead the table having dropped just one leg throughout the tournament.

Second place went to Austin as he beat Maddison 2-1 in the final match of the afternoon.

The PDC’s Home Tour continues on Sunday night when 2019 World Series quarter-finalist Krzysztof Ratajski takes on 2020 UK Open quarter-finalist Jamie Hughes, 2020 World Championship quarter-finalist Darius Labanauskas and Spaniard Toni Alcinas.

Saturday saw Swede Daniel Larsson win all three of his games to top Group 23 ahead of Dutchman Dirk van Duijvenbode, German Martin Schindler and Australian Kyler Anderson, the latter of whom was making his competitive return following his battle with coronavirus.

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PDC Home Tour – latest confirmed groups

Sunday Monday
Krzysztof Ratajski Keegan Brown
Toni Alcinas Reece Robinson
Jamie Hughes Jose De Sousa
Darius Labanauskas Robert Thornton

PDC Home Tour – The Winners

Group One – Jamie Lewis Group Nine – Martijn Kleermaker Group 17 – Damon Heta
Group Two – Luke Woodhouse Group Ten – Nathan Aspinall Group 18 – Stephen Bunting
Group Three – Dave Chisnall Group 11 – Alan Tabern Group 19 – Glen Durrant
Group Four – Geert Nentjes Group 12 – Max Hopp Group 20 – Ryan Murray
Group Five – Nick Kenny Group 13 – Carl Wilkinson Group 21 – Rob Cross
Group Six – Ryan Searle Group 14 – Chris Dobey Group 22 – Jesus Noguera
Group Seven – Jelle Klaasen Group 15 – Darren Webster Group 23 – Daniel Larsson
Group Eight – Jonny Clayton Group 16 – Jeff Smith

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