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All 22 qualifiers for this September’s JDC Junior World Darts Championship were also confirmed on a thrilling day of action. Team England members and the 2020 PDPA Development Tour scholarships were also confirmed on an eventful day of action for the JDC. 

In what has been a breakthrough year for Leighton Bennett, he secured his sixth JDC tour victory of 2019. He would improve game by game on route to the title, eventually averaging 95.4 in his 5-2 final victory over Harry Gregory. 

 

He would reach the thrilling finale following victories over Luke Simmons and Alfie Jacques, before dispatching of Cambridgeshire’s Connor Arberry in lightning quick fashion. 

Following his disappointing loss to ‘Boom Boom Bennett’ in event one, Gregory would push his sorrows aside to focus on event two of the afternoon. 

He would make light work of Joshua-James Powell and former World’ finalist Lennon Cradock in the early rounds, before edging past Luke Littler at the semi-finals stage. The table-topping Bennett would bow out of the competition at the last 16 stage to Luke Simmons, as the Sudbury thrower exacted his revenge for the earlier result. 

This set up a final with Brad Phillips, who had reached the final following victories over former tour finalists Nathan Care and Henry Coates earlier in the day. 

After averaging 98 in the previous two rounds, Gregory would carry the momentum into the final match of the day. He would remain heavy with his scoring and clinical on the outer ring to seal his second JDC tour title of the season, confirming his place on Team England in the process. 

Joining Harry Gregory on Team England for this Autumn’s JDC World Cup in Gibraltar will be old adversary Leighton Bennett, James Beeton and third placed Keelan Kay.

Bennett, Kay and Beeton will also receive Junior Darts Corporation all-star status for their exploits on the Scott Farms International tour in 2019. 

Finally, thanks to the PDPA Scholarship system, James Beeton and Keelan Kay will also receive a scholarship to all 20 PDC Development Tour events in 2020. They will be joined by Blackburn’s Nathan Care subject to age restrictions. 

By Josh Green 

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