BULLSEYE: Arthur McMinn, from Cannonvale, concentrates on his mark at the Airlie Beach Bowls Club on Sunday.
BULLSEYE: Arthur McMinn, from Cannonvale, concentrates on his mark at the Airlie Beach Bowls Club on Sunday. Georgia Simpson

Come and try to hit the bullseye

IT WHISTLES through the air, a flash of movement before it more than likely misses its mark; the bullseye.

The small missile instead lands on the inner ring, scoring its thrower 25 points.

A bullseye in a round of darts is worth 50 points, and the probability of hitting it is low, but not impossible.

Dart player Jamie Maher said the game was "addictive".

"It really is a game of numbers; you're building your score and you can see yourself getting better every week," he said.

At present, there is no official league in Airlie Beach and with fond memories of popping down to the pub and having a pint and a "throw" back home in Ireland, Mr Maher is working towards getting a local competition up and running in the area.

"It's an easy game to play. You can just show up and have a few beers," he said.

An interesting sport, it doesn't exert the player, you're not likely to become injured or incapacitated, there's no need to commit to hours of training and it's acceptable to have a drink between rounds.

"It's inexpensive and there's very little in the way of effort, there's no running around," Mr Maher said.

However, that doesn't detract from the skill and precision required to obtain the winning score; hand eye co-ordination at its finest.

For the next two Sundays in February, the Airlie Beach Bowls Club will play host to a come and try afternoon, organised by Mr Maher, which will hopefully translate into new dart addicts, keen to be play in a local league.

The afternoon kicks off about 12.30pm, with anyone welcome to come and have a throw.

"All skill levels are welcome. Boys, girls, men and women, it's open to everyone. There will obviously be different levels of players. Some are really good, some are ok and some have a bit to work on, like me," he said.

Mr Maher hopes to recruit enough players for two divisions, with the first division to be fairly competitive, and the second division for people who are new to the game and still developing their skill set.

"That's not to say people in division two won't get the opportunity to come up and play against the big boys in division one," Mr Maher said.

Once the league is up and running, the plan is to alternate between a social week, then a tournament week.

With a start date pencilled in for March 3 subject to numbers, Mr Maher encourages those who are curious to bite the bullet (or throw the dart) to come down and give it ago.

"It's just a good game, I've always had fun doing it, it's very social back home; You go down to the pub and have a couple of pints and throw darts.

"Just come down and try it, you'd be surprised everyone has smiles on their faces."

For more information, contact the Airlie Beach Bowls Club, or Jamie Maher on 0405 411 865.