Eccles suffers Speedy Hire UK Open darts exit

OUT: Tony Eccles

OUT: Tony Eccles

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HARTLEPOOL darts star Tony Eccles has been knocked out of the Speedy Hire UK Open in Bolton.

The Viper went out 9-5 at the Reebok Stadium on Friday night at the hands of his old BDO rival Mark Webster.

Eccles had begun the Sky Sports-screened tournament in good form with two 4-0 wins in the opening two rounds against Bruce Harrison and Shaun Griffiths.

The 41-year-old from West View followed neighbour Dave Prins out of the event.

The Badger had beaten John Donaldson 4-3 in the preliminary round and Jon Jukes 4-1 in round one before the Peterlee left-hander lost 4-2 to left-hander James Wade at the second hurdle.

Darts superstar Phil Taylor began his bid for a third successive Speedy Hire UK Open title with a 9-3 win over Mark Frost.

Taylor, who has won the title in the Premier Suite at the Reebok Stadium for the past two years, bounced back from his recent semi-final loss in the 888.com Premier League Darts with a strong showing in his all-Stoke battle.

But world champion Adrian Lewis crashed out to Terry Jenkins 9-7 on Friday night.