RED DRAGON 12 weeks game improvement course.

Discussion in 'Practice, Strategy & Technique' started by bulldozer, Aug 21, 2018.

  1. CraigB

    CraigB Best looking Craig B in the forum! $:-{P> Staff Member Site Admin

    I take a middle road although it's flexible if I know how a certain opponent plays. Even though it's completely stupid, people go ballistic when you over-point them. It reminds me of road rage. My main goal is to remove the chance for the "miracle comeback" not to try and beat them into submission which, I find, really motivates them to play better against you the next time. We used to have several of the so-called top players out here that would ruthlessly bully opponents who pointed more than even a mark ahead, then they would back-fill and close any number the opponent had open so they could head into the end-game with a chance for that one big turn that wins the game for them. My choice will definitely differ depending on whether I'm ahead or behind. I'm in the camp that points keep the player who's behind in the game, therefore I rarely point much if I'm already ahead. That said, I will always throw an extra dart at a number if it means a single will cause my opponent to have to throw two marks to get ahead. For example, you will never see me start off with T20, T19, T18. If I hit the T20 on the first dart, my second will always be right back at it. Even a S20 is worth two 19's or 18's. That said, I will deviate from conventional thinking because I've been struggling so much with my 20's lately and can completely bomb the 19's. I've been known to start with 19's and fight 19's against 20's. So much so that, several times in league, my opponents will start a game trying to close 19's first - heh... Along the same vein, when my opponent closes a number but doesn't point, I will always try to close the next number instead of following (for several reasons). However, if I only close the number and have one dart left, I won't throw for points but will use that dart to see if I can close the larger number (hey, you have to shoot at it eventually if you intend to win, right?). Besides the obvious fact that you might triple the number and takeover the lead in the game, psychologically, a lot of opponents will then try to close your lower number instead of pointing because you didn't point!

    When it comes down to it, I only have a few guidelines that I use. One is "Never assume a triple." Where I choose to throw my final dart is influenced a lot by this. If a number requires two marks to close but I have another number available to point on, I will use that last darts for points. A triple for points works great but so does a single. A single at the number I need two to close is nearly useless. When I have the superior number I won't over-point but will get ahead then move on however, if I have an inferior number, I will often point the crap out of it to cause my opponent to stop his progress and play my game. If I get a turn to back close a higher number, I'll throw my first dart at it but, if it's only a single, I won't follow like most do and close it with two or three darts, but will go back to pointing. Along a similar theme, one thing I see that bugs the heck out of me is when someone has zero marks on one number, but two on a lower number and, if given the chance, will throw to close the lower number "because it only needs one mark to close!" Dumb, dumb, dumb! Ignoring the statistic that shows how often that one dart hits a wasted triple when you only need a single, closing the lower number doesn't really help if you leave a higher number open! That one dart is MUCH better used by throwing at the number with zero marks. Sure, if you hit a single, you still have two numbers open but that doesn't matter because your opponent is still going to throw at the higher number anyway. However, if you DO hit the triple, then you've now forced them to move on to the lower number AND you've progressed the game much farther towards the end in your favor. Another thing I do which, interestingly, can impact the last scenario as well, is that I'll go for the bull after the 17's and, definitely, will throw there if I have one dart left. You have to hit bulls anyway, but your chances of slopping in either points or closing that number with only two marks is far higher than later in the game when only the bull is left. Plus, a DB is better than a T16. Another good reason to close bulls early is if you're playing an opponent who mostly plays soft-tip. On the mid-range players this can really mess them up since that's what they throw at much of the time and they're simply not used to spending "quality time" on any of the numbers. In fact, my preferred opening shot against them is one I call the Dieter Schutsch since he did this a LOT against everyone and that's to start T20, T20, DB. When possible, your next turn would be T19, T18, DB but even just closing the T19's and the bulls can unnerve an opponent because they are now being squeezed. Holy cow does this work against soft-tippers! LOL. Oh yeah, there is one time I might pound the points even when I'm ahead and that's when one of these "plan for a late miracle" opponents starts trying to back-close numbers. In those cases, I will definitely punish them with more points (heh, hopefully!) than I'll ever need.

    So, to summarize, I don't feel there is any "perfect" Cricket strategy but, and this is the beauty of this game, a handful of strategies that can be used based on what your opponent does. 501 can (and, in my opinion, should) be played as if it's just you by yourself since there are only rare moments towards the end of the game where you might change what you're throwing at based on your opponent's position in the game. But Cricket is a game where one player can influence what the other player can shoot at so you have to have more than one strategy.
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  2. VanO

    VanO Moderator Site Moderator

    No expert here I just remember my partner Charlie and his some of his chides for me in doubles(and singles from the gallery). Ones I remember are, give your opponent 3 marks per round, never chase, stay aggressive, stay 4 bulls ahead in points if you can and never waste darts. If I hit t20 on first dart he would ALWAYS say “Again” and after the seconds nd hit on 20 it would always be “18.” For what it’s worth.
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  3. CraigB

    CraigB Best looking Craig B in the forum! $:-{P> Staff Member Site Admin

    A couple of good reasons for that last 18. It's along the same plane you were just shooting plus, by pointing, you've already funneled your opponent into going for the next highest number available so, if he closes it, points AND closes the 20's, then you already have a start on the next number YOU have to shoot at. Now, if you had shot at the 19's, only a triple prevents them from going there. All of that said, I'm a bit of an exception since 19's are my best number (usually! LOL) so I'm more inclined to "feel" a triple coming and shoot down there.
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  4. VanO

    VanO Moderator Site Moderator

    You could be, Charlie, my partner of old Craig! Except that you’re Craig and probably not as old as Charlie. :D He was pretty old 25 years ago but if he’s still around and can see he could probably still hold his own at a dartboard. He could wear out triple on 17,19,16.
  5. bulldozer

    bulldozer Member

    I have been doing an experiment against the computer on Expert level on my Hi Darts board. On this level it regularly plays at around 7 to 8 MPR at Cricket.

    I can only beat it a few times on this level, around 1 game in 6 and I have to go first and shoot the lights out of the trebles closing them as fast as I can out of the gate.
    I won 3 games from 18 played against the computer on Expert level , I went first in every game that I played against it.
    My winning MPRs were 4.9 MPR (it had a rare off game as I lost quite a few games shooting 5MPR and more) then I won with a 5.9 MPR (it dropped below 6 with a hat trick on the bull) and the last game I ended with a fantastic 6.9MPR (again it dropped below 7 with a hat trick on the bull) against the computer who was a throw behind me as I went first it had an MPR of over 8.

    If I try to get into a points war, even if I am scoring 9 marks in Trebles regularly as I have tried and failed again and again against this machine, I have no chance.

    I have to try and hit a white horse out of the gate or at least 7 from 9 and then do it again and if I get a shot at bull I have to take it out in one go. The Computer is closing numbers as fast as it can but if I try and point against it on this level it simply destroys me.

    I know it is an exaggeration as not many if any human players play consistently to around 8 MPR but I feel it shows the best tactics to give you a winning chance if you are good enough to take it.
    The computer on Expert level is obviously way better than me but I have a slim chance to win if I play great, Closing numbers quickly by hitting what I throw at and Going First is my biggest advantage and my only way to win against this vastly superior opponent.
    Last edited: Dec 26, 2018
  6. bulldozer

    bulldozer Member

    We played a soft tip league match last night and I shot my best average in (doubles cricket match) so far in competition at exactly 6MPR and I scored around 300 points as well as I waited for my partner to close out.
    I am pleased with my progress as I have only been playing soft tip for 2 months. We are in 2nd place in the league just 1 point behind the leaders who we play next Tuesday.
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  7. VanO

    VanO Moderator Site Moderator

    Good work and good luck next week!
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  8. bulldozer

    bulldozer Member

    Just an update about last nights soft tip match, we played against the league leaders and we lost 7 games to 5, on a personal note I played well and hit some decent scores. I feel am getting better at playing with a doubles partner and getting used to long times between throws.

    Below is a list of my top 10 scores in the league that began in November 2018, I copied and pasted it from the Radikal darts website.

    • Own Games

      1 495 pts 6.00 MPR S.B.PINHEIRO 24/01/2019
      2 401 pts 4.86 MPR S.B.PINHEIRO 29/01/2019
      3 385 pts 38.54 PPD S.B.PINHEIRO 29/01/2019
      4 375 pts 4.55 MPR S.B.PINHEIRO 29/01/2019
      5 334 pts 33.40 PPD S.B.PINHEIRO 11/01/2019
      6 334 pts 33.40 PPD S.B.PINHEIRO 18/12/2018
      7 314 pts 31.40 PPD S.B.PINHEIRO 18/12/2018
      8 313 pts 31.31 PPD S.B.PINHEIRO 27/11/2018
      9 303 pts 30.27 PPD S.B.PINHEIRO 18/12/2018
      10 300 pts 3.64 MPR S.B.PINHEIRO 29/01/2019
    We can still qualify for the finals but we have to shape ourselves as a team and win our last 2 matches in the league.
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  9. bulldozer

    bulldozer Member

    Hi just another update on the soft tip darts league that our team was competing in... We finished this league in only 2nd place on 26th February and this means that now we will be put into another league with losing teams from higher divisions and have to try to qualify from this league for the Finals later in the year.

    GP MPR Win% wins loss Hat 3bd WH
    BULLDOZER PINHEIRO TEAM 32 3.27 62.50 32 20 12 5 3 1

    32 games of Cricket played... 5 x hat tricks 3 x 3 in a bed 1 x WH 33 x 5marks 23 x 6marks 20 x 7marks 0x 8m 0 x9m 87x Bulls and 16 xDB

    On a personal basis I was happy winning the stats league. How do these MPRs compare to the leagues in your areas I am just interested if you have any stats. Cheers Kev.
    Last edited: Mar 10, 2019
  10. bulldozer

    bulldozer Member

    Hi Guys, I forgot to add....These are my best scores.... the 4th the 6th and the 7th scores on the list I hit on the final day of the league.

    1 495 6.00 MPR S.B.PINHEIRO 24/01/2019
    2 401 4.86 MPR S.B.PINHEIRO 29/01/2019
    3 385 38.54 PPD S.B.PINHEIRO 29/01/2019
    4 385 38.54 PPD S.B.PINHEIRO 26/02/2019
    5 375 4.55 MPR S.B.PINHEIRO 29/01/2019
    6 371 4.50 MPR S.B.PINHEIRO 26/02/2019
    7 357 4.33 MPR S.B.PINHEIRO 26/02/2019
    8 336 33.58 PPD S.B.PINHEIRO 12/02/2019
    9 334 33.40 PPD S.B.PINHEIRO 11/01/2019
    10 334 33.40 PPD S.B.PINHEIRO 18/12/2018

    On a personal basis I was happy with my improvement in soft tip and I only took the soft tip game up in October 2018.

    I have found that I can score better than this in singles as then you do not have to rely on a partner to close segments as fast as you do to stop the opposition scoring or to score yourself should you need to.
    It has been good fun though and I have been under extreme pressure especially at cricket on many occasions playing to help the team rather than just myself to nick games that maybe we should not have won.
    I have a really bad Flu bug at the moment, and I have been coughing so violently that I have pulled my abdominal muscles and I am in a bad way at the moment.

    I want to get to the radikal darts board at the bar to put one final session in to try and win the Radikal darts category 3 3 A'S 58 Championship league.
    I am in 3rd spot after a couple of days trying over a week ago and only need to put a couple of good rounds in to probably win it.
    I do not understand though why I have gone from category 7 to category 3 (almost cat 2 inside just 3 weeks of playing these 3AS championships and next time I am in Cat2 ) when other players are seemingly still languishing in the lower category leagues winning the small prizemoney on offer there (30 or 40 Euros), even though they seem to be scoring above their perceived MPRs that never seem to rise.

    I started at a 2.83 MPR in October it rose to a 3.3 or so in the doubles league games but in the last 3 weeks in the 3AS cricket competitions it rose to 3.89MPR average which is Cat 2.

    There are 10 bandings here and 2 for ladies only so 12 in total... but starting a little higher at Cat 4 the banding is 2.95 to 3.21 Cat3 is 3.22 to 3.55 Cat 2 is 3.56 to 4.29 and then any higher is Cat 1.
    No matter though as I aim to be in Category 1 and winning there in the not to distant future, time will tell, lol.
    Last edited: Mar 10, 2019
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  11. VanO

    VanO Moderator Site Moderator

    Nice shooting dozer! I haven’t been a league player for many years and never in soft tip but that’s pretty strong play. Good luck against your flu bug and in the Radikal dart championship
    bulldozer likes this.
  12. bulldozer

    bulldozer Member

    Thanks VanO, this coughing with torn abdominal muscles is really getting me down, one symptom without the other is no problem but put the 2 together and your life is totally disrupted. lol
  13. Erik

    Erik Site Owner Staff Member Site Admin Site Moderator

    Sorry to hear that! Hope you get better fast!
  14. bulldozer

    bulldozer Member

    Thanks Erik, I managed to get down to the Hospital today and I was diagnosed with Bronchitis and badly torn abdominal muscles. I am on antibiotics , some decent painkillers and some Cortisone to reduce the swelling of my poor abdominals.
    If I can get a few hours sleep tonight I will have turned the corner. I really need to get to the darts machine before midnight tomorrow but my wife insists that it is unlikely that I will make it, lol.
  15. Erik

    Erik Site Owner Staff Member Site Admin Site Moderator

    What happened?
  16. bulldozer

    bulldozer Member

    It is tonight at midnight Thursday 14th March , that the 3as 58 ends and at the moment I am in 3rd spot but vulnerable to anybody having a late surge. It is unlikely that I can go as I am still not well and my wife is ill too so I will have to let it go and see what happens.
    I will be in category 2 when I play the next 3as competition on the darts machine so I will have to average in the 6 mpr range to do any good.

    On a plus side I bought yet another set of new soft tip darts (Red Dragon Gerwyn Price 20g) and they arrived yesterday, I think I will get on well with them and they may help me improve a little more as the grips are good but still easy to release. Time will tell.

    My averages for the Category 3 that ends tonight are below. its a 5.02 mpr average.

    • CHAMPIONSHIP: 3 A'S 58 | 3 CAT

      1 5.36 S.B.PINHEIRO 25/02/2019 [​IMG]
      2 5.17 S.B.PINHEIRO 25/02/2019 [​IMG]
      3 4.92 S.B.PINHEIRO 25/02/2019 [​IMG]
      4 4.9 S.B.PINHEIRO 25/02/2019 [​IMG]
      5 4.75 S.B.PINHEIRO 25/02/2019 [​IMG]
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  17. VanO

    VanO Moderator Site Moderator

    It is not lack of desire that caused you to bow out. Circumstances were beyond you control and in cases like that, I feel, it is best to let the chips fall how they may. There will be a next time
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  18. bulldozer

    bulldozer Member

    After the experience of going to the national steel tip darts Doubles finals here in Portugal I decided that I was going to change my throw, I had already ordered some one80 night hunter sting 24g darts from darts corner before I left for Lisbon and when I got back home they had arrived in the mail.

    I put the trusty 22g Whitlocks with long points that I have been using to decent effect away and set up the One80 Nighthunter Stings with 48mm shafts and the tiny sized Target Taylor Vision edge flights.
    I have been throwing these Sting darts and only these darts every day since I got back on Friday 24th May just one week and I am hitting 180s for fun with them.

    I have altered my hand position so the dart is right in front of my face in front of my left eye and I have altered my finger hold so that only 2 fingers have a proper grip of the dart and the third finger just steadies the short barrelled dart.

    I have slowed my throw right down too and deliberately aim every single dart before throwing, instead of rhythm throwing that sometime lead me to be slack minded and waste darts .

    I am now stacking the darts horizontally to good effect like Taylor but not as well as him yet, lol instead of the darts previously standing up a little in the treble bed.

    I feel that my game has improved a lot for these changes and I will test this out against decent opposition next week.

    I played some soft tip yesterday in a Radikal Darts 3As 61 contest using my Whitlock soft tip barrels with cosmo super kite flights and amongst a couple of 5 plus MPRs to add to my previous 5 plus efforts I threw a 7.00 MPR to take me to the top of the table with a 5.7 MPR average, my actual official average has now been raised to 4,03MPR due to my last session on the Soft tip board.
    I believe in my new system and I think thats half the battle for me. I think I have had a breakthrough to the next level, Time will tell, now if I can only hit those doubles...... lol.
    Last edited: May 31, 2019
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  19. Erik

    Erik Site Owner Staff Member Site Admin Site Moderator

    Good luck! Let us know how it goes
    bulldozer likes this.
  20. bulldozer

    bulldozer Member

    I have been practicing with my new short barrel One80 Nighthunter STING darts and as I say I have altered my set up too to incorporate them and hopefully show more consistency on the trebles.

    I feel I now needed to change my soft tip darts to something similar in shape. The problem is that ONE 80 do not make a 20g barrel in the Nighthunter Sting soft tip dart and although my 18g barrel Whitlock Softips are great darts they force me back to old habits that I am trying to break due to the difference in length and width of the darts barrel.

    The barrels on these Cyclones are 40.50 mm and they are 7.80mm in circumference at the widest point compared with the One80 Sting steel tip barrels at 41.20mm and 7.90mm barrels.

    So I just ordered some of these from Red Dragon. it says 20G on this packet in the photo but I got the 22g ST with 20g barrels 2mawpp_j_1.jpg

    I hope to get them before I go to France for a couple of days on Wednesday 19th June. they are a back weighted barrel so I should get a flat throw with them and that is ideal for me especially for soft tip. I will just get rid of the standard flights and put the small vision edge flights in and they should fly great Time will tell.
    Last edited: Jun 12, 2019
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