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McIntosh and Merlit claim maiden WDF titles at Torshavn Open

Jan McIntosh and Michelle Merlit marked the WDF tour's return to the Faroe Islands by claiming their first ranking titles at the Torshavn Open.

McIntosh makes history for Faroese darts

No player from the Faroe Islands had ever won a WDF ranking title since the WDF took over the running of the World Masters and World Championships coming into this weekend's events but that's all changed now thanks to the history-making exploits of McIntosh.

The Faroese ace had made deep runs in WDF tournaments before but had never got through to a final. He changed that on home soil, producing a string of consistent displays before beating top seed Edwin Torbjönsson 5-2 in the final.

Torbjörnsson had won titles on Faroese soil in each of the last two years but got off to a slow start in the final, McIntosh breaking in the opening leg and then doing so again in the third leg to establish a 3-0 lead. Torbjörnsson, who made his Lakeside debut last December, won two legs on the spin to cut McIntosh's lead but missed a series of doubles to level it at 3-3.

The Faroese duly punished him, pinning tops to make it 4-2 before sealing victory with a 17-darter.

McIntosh had looked strong throughout the day, topping his round-robin group before breezing into the Last 16 for the loss of just one leg. There, he accounted for Mikkel Knudsen 4-1 and followed that win up with a triumph over Knudsen's Danish compatriot Jon Kirkeby.

That booked a semi-final with Scotland's Scott Campbell. Campbell had topped the tournament averaged to that point and looked on course for his first WDF final when he led 3-1 with an average just shy of 99. McIntosh dug deep though, winning three legs on the spin to take it 4-3.

As for Torbjörnsson, he overcame an early loss in the group stages to reach his first final of the year, recording multiple 90+ averages as he saw off the likes of John Scott, Niels-Jorgen Hansen and Bulgaria's Dilyan Kolev.

2023 winner Björn Lejon was defeated in the Last 16 by the aforementioned Dane Hansen.

Merlit beats Tekauer to claim maiden title

Denmark international Michelle Merlit made the short trip over to the Faroe Islands very worthwhile by claiming her first WDF title in the Women's Torshavn Open.

The 31-year-old topped her group and then accounted for compatriot Betina Pedersen to reach the quarter-finals. She beat Milou Emriksdotter at that stage before beating the 2023 champion Maud Jansson 4-2 in the semis.

That booked a final with Hungary's Greta Tekauer, who'd beaten Brynja Herborg to reach her seventh ranking final in the last six months.

It was the Hungarian that started stronger in the title decider, racing into a 3-1 lead. She didn't win another leg after that point though, Merlit pinning 94 to kick off a four-leg burst that culminated with a match-best 19-darter and clinched her a 5-3 win with an average of 65.4.

Tags: WDF Tournaments WDF Faroe Islands