The Telegraph
Thursday , September 5 , 2013
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Darts diary

Ladies fight out

Aneesha Mehta (centre) of Dakshin Kalikata Sansad (DKS) put up a fight against her national team partner Jolly Chanda of DI on the DKS premises. “It’s always a tough match when Jolly and I play singles. Those who witnessed our game said that it was by far one of the best matches of the tournament! DKS doesn’t have too many regular players but as a team we put up a great show,” smiled the physical trainer by profession.

Sporty couple

He an orthopaedic surgeon. She a school principal. Their common passion? Darts. Meet husband-wife duo Tathagata and Proma Das. They even have a dartboard at home! “It has become a nice way of spending time together,” smiled Tathagata, when we met up with the couple at Calcutta International Club (CIC) on the sidelines of a league match versus Lake Club.

For the members of CIC, darts has become a “habit” for which they take out time in the evenings. “It’s a mind game and very relaxing,” said Tathagata.

Play and party

Ushering in the second month of the 7th Royal Challenge Kolkata Darts League 2013 in association with The Telegraph (on till September 29), Calcutta International Club hosted the Chairman’s Party, following a CIC vs ILSS (Anderson Club) clash which the latter won 3-1. The evening also saw an exhibition match between Teams Bengal and Calcutta. Music and merrymaking was on the cards. Debasish Kumar, mayoral council member and also the chairman of the Darts League organising committee, dropped by to wish the players the very best (right; with Olympian Joydeep Karmakar) “Darts helps develop concentration,” said Kumar.

Joydeep had some good news for air-rifle shooting enthusiasts. “I am hoping to bring a similar league tournament in shooting, perhaps by January 2014. The initial talks are on and even the Calcutta Police want to be a part of it. I would like to start off with corporates and non-shooting clubs, kind of like the Bundesliga. Every man is a marksman. Remember that it all started with shooting balloons!” he smiled.

Aim at him!

Guess what Lipika Iyer’s inspiration is? “My husband keeps telling me, ‘just imagine my face in place of the bullseye and you will win’!” chuckled the 50-plus champ from Lake Club who won against both ILSS (Anderson Club) and CIC in their backyard!

We are family

Saugata Banerjee’s is a family of sports enthusiasts. They have had a dartboard for the past 20 years and are also big on golf, badminton, rowing and swimming. “Five members of the team are from my family itself! My sons, daughter-in-law, wife and myself,” said Banerjee, of The Saturday Club contingent who played against ILSS’s Aritra Dutta in men’s singles on home turf. And in a ladies’ singles match, Banerjee’s daughter-in-law Srabasti faced Aritra’s mother Sudipta!

Aritra Dutta, 20, from ILSS, is the youngest player of the tourney. “I’ve been playing since I was 10. Both my parents (in picture with mom Sudipta) play darts. So it was always a good game at home,” said the Asutosh College student.

Secretary Speak: “With darts growing bigger and better all over the country, Harrows Darts Technology, England, has also joined hands with us to promote darts in India. We hope to popularise the sport among schools and clubs,” said Prasanta Saha, secretary general of All India Darts Association.