Borders duo to represent Scotland in first disability darts international
Two darts players from the Borders are hoping to do Scotland proud in their first international tournament next weekend.
Grant Murray and Kyle Clark have both qualified to represent their country against their English, Welsh and Northern Irish counterparts at the Disability Home Internationals, held in Morecambe on Saturday, March 14.
The event is the first of its kind and will be split into two categories, namely Classic – for players with physical disabilities – and Compris – for those with disabilities which are not always noticeable.
Grant, (34) from Earlston, has been playing competitive darts in the Borders for 14 years, while Kyle (40), had been competing in Wales before moving back to Galashiels two years ago.
Both currently represent the Red Lion pub in Earlston in the Jedburgh and Kelso darts leagues, and have been part of the Disability Darts Scotland organisation since it was established in January 2019.
Grant said: “As this is both myself and Kyle’s first year doing this we had no expectations or goals other than to give it a try and enjoy it.
“But since we both currently sit number two in Scotland for our respective categories the expectations are a bit higher than first anticipated!
“Hopes are high for some good results from both of us and the rest of the Scotland squad making the trip.
“I’m so proud and honoured to be representing my country, it’s a massive achievement for me.”
Grant lives with a neurological disorder which has only made him more determined to be a success on the oche.
“I’m an extremely passionate, determined and competitive person, and I’ve had to be from day one as I’ve had to deal with having a condition known as spastic paraplegia,” he explained.
“It can be extremely frustrating and hard work, and it causes quite a few awkward hurdles to get over (mainly my own two feet) as my brain sends signals to my legs telling them how to operate, but 99 per cent of the time they just don’t listen.
“But it’s never stopped me from doing anything or trying, if anything it’s made me more competitive because I had to be better and train harder just to see myself as being on a level playing field with everyone else.”
Grant’s competitive nature was also shown on the race track in his youth when he was a five-times British Super 2 Karting champion.
Team mate Kyle is also looking forward to competing for Scotland.
“In February last year I was playing in the Scottish Open in Renfrew when I noticed the Disability Darts Scotland stall,” he said.
“Having recently been diagnosed with Complex Post Traumatic Stress Disorder, I approached them to see if I was eligible to join, which I was, so I registered.
“I’ve been playing disability darts for over a year now and have won a couple of tournaments and come runner-up in many also.
“I am confident we will do well as a team and as a individuals for our country.
“My darts have been going really well recently having had some coaching from Gary Anderson’s coach, Andy McCardle, based up in Edinburgh, who has given me some lessons on approaching the game differently and practice routines to help improve my game.”