Darts: Brooks loses out to Hedman at Northern Ireland Open

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Rachel Brooks followed up her recent win at the Turkish Open by reaching the final of the Northern Ireland Open at the weekend.

The Wroot woman - now ranked second in the BDO world rankings - continued her rich vein of form to reach the final in Newry.

However, the current world number one and reigning Northern Ireland Open champion Deta Hedman proved to be too good on the day as she ran out a comfortable 5-0 winner.

Brooks did enjoy victories in the mixed pairs and ladies pairs as she continues to prepare for her World Championships bow at Lakeside in January.

Like she did in Turkey, the 50-year-old again teamed up with Martin Phillips (Wales) to win the mixed pairs.

And she joined forces with Hedman to beat Trina Gulliver and Heather Lodge 3-0 in the ladies final.

Husband Tony said: “It wasn’t the result she wanted in the singles but it’s more valuable experience for her on stage.

“Playing the number one player in world will do her no harm at all.”

Brooks, who plays in the Doncaster Monday Night Darts League, has enjoyed a rapid rise to prominence after only taking up the sport four years ago and hopes to land an England call-up in the near future.