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County season returns with a bang after two nine-dart legs

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The BDO British Inter County Championships kicked off 2016 with a bang, as Berkshire’s Paul Hogan and Clackmannanshire’s John Connal both recorded nine-dart legs.

Hogan (above) completed the perfect leg during his 4-1 victory over Sussex’s Greg Upton on Sunday, while Connal’s proved to be in vain, with the Scot losing 4-3 to his opponent from Highland.

Elsewhere, Yorkshire climbed to the top of the Premier Division table after winning 26-10 away at strugglers Cornwall.

A strong Yorkshire team, which included recently-crowned BDO world champion Scott Waites, established a 13-5 lead on the first day and dropped just five games on Sunday to record a big win.

Previous leaders Lancashire were knocked off the top after a 22-14 defeat to Warwickshire.

Trina Gulliver MBE led the hosts to victory with a 3-0 victory on the final day, with Lakeside semi-finalist Jamie Hughes also in action for Warwickshire.

Essex cruised to a 24-12 victory against Cheshire to cement third place in the Premier Division, while Cambridgeshire moved into the top half following a 20-16 triumph at Devon.

In the only other game in the BICC top flight, Hampshire moved off the bottom after beating Lincolnshire 22-14.

Glamorgan stretched their lead at the top of Division One to 26 points after they eased to a 25-11 win at Surrey.

Nottinghamshire remain their closest challengers as they claimed a 22-14 win at Kent, while recent Lakeside runner-up Deta Hedman inspired Oxfordshire to a surprise 19-17 triumph at home against Gwent.

Elsewhere in Division One, Glen Durrant bounced back from his Lakeside disappointment with a 32.69 one-dart average, which helped him to a 4-1 victory.

However, it was not enough to prevent his Cleveland side from tasting a narrow 19-17 defeat to County Durham.

Dorset rose to fourth in the table with a 21-15 triumph away at bottom side Derbyshire.

Over in Division Two, and Suffolk put themselves back in the title race, with a 25-11 win at lowly Cumbria propelling them to third in the table.

West Midlands still hold top spot, after they managed to see off Worcestershire 19-17.

Hogan’s nine-dart leg helped Berkshire to an emphatic 25-11 victory away at Sussex, and sees them now within five points of the Division Two leaders.

Elsewhere, bottom side Somerset threw away a commanding 17-9 lead as Northamptonshire won a remarkable nine of the last 10 games to salvage an 18-18 draw.

Northumberland remain top of Division Three despite losing 19-17 at Leicestershire, and in Division Four, Gloucestershire are the new leaders.

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