Grandson of BDO founder Olly Croft beats Ally Pally nine-dart hero at UK Open

Darts clearly runs within the blood of the Croft household after the grandson of late BDO founder Olly tasted success on the UK Open.

Joe Croft, 30, made his debut within the match on Friday afternoon after reserving his spot in Minehead by way of the Riley’ Amateur qualifiers. And he proved immediately that he wasn’t there simply to make up the numbers, knocking out former Alexandra Palace nine-dart hero Willie Borland.

Borland made historical past when he hit a match-winning nine-darter towards Bradley Brooks on debut in north London in 2021. The end – and his subsequent celebration – have since gone down in darting folklore.

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But he was powerless to cease Croft within the south west because the Hertfordshire thrower spun his personal fairytale on the oche, defeating the Scotsman 6-5 within the first spherical. He wasn’t performed there both, subsequently seeing off James Hurrell 6-4 in spherical two to e-book a spot in spherical three and assure himself not less than £1,500.

Croft will probably be a well-recognized surname to darts followers, and never with out coincidence. Joe is the grandson of former BDO founder Olly Croft, who ran the organisation from 1973 till 2011.

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Olly Croft was the founding father of the BDO

Olly sadly handed away in November 2019 on the age of 90, however his grandson is carrying on the household’s darting legacy with an excellent run on the UK Open. Joe has additionally competed on the PDC’s Challenge Tour this yr, most not too long ago reaching the last-32 of Challenge Tour 5 in Milton Keynes.

He is affiliated with Mission Darts, which has three-time BDO semi-finalist Darryl Fitton as their Player Development Manager. He spoke about Croft final yr after the star signed with the agency.

Joe Croft (proper) is signed to Mission Darts (Daryl Fitton, left)

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“I’ve known Joe for over 20 years as he was always around at the Lakeside with his father young Oliver,” he stated. “Some would possibly know that Joe is the grandson of the late BDO founder Olly Croft, so darts actually is in his blood!”