Darts figures to make a big transition in 2013 with the departure of an established event.
Gone will be the Vivian Rankine Memorial darts tournament, a staple on the local scene the last 13 years. For supporters like Deputy Governor Franz Manderson, the competition will always hold a special place.
“It means so much seeing the support for Vivian and his son George,” Manderson said. “Vivian was a fine example of what it took to be a police officer. It makes me happy that the tournament was able to keep him in the forefront of our minds. I was also happy to see George go on to better things.
“Darts teaches you the crucial things in this world like patience, mathematics and focus and you really learn all of those things. I learned a lot of that in darts. At this tournament, I see the most important thing: team spirit. Darts is a gentleman’s game, it makes me proud and it’s something I’d want to support and see supported in the future.”
The tournament has been staged since 1999 to honour Vivian Rankine, a former officer for the Royal Cayman Islands Police Service and a darts aficionado who passed away years ago. It has been organised by Martin Bodden, Carol Johnson, Horace Duquesnay and Trevor Lloyd (who passed away in November 2010).
George Rankine, 18, received $14,477 as proceeds from the memorial. He intends to attend Hawaii Pacific University to pursue an undergraduate degree related to marine biology.
For Shevonne Stewart, Vivian’s niece, the event will always be special.
“To have it just for my uncle, in his memory to benefit his son, shows there is a real drive to support it,” Stewart said. “I’ve always supported it for the cause. I’m proud of George for aiming high.”
For 2012, Jasper Esguerra emerged the overall winner. The Filipino star would edge countryman Marcelo ‘Val’ Junio in the tournament final. Randy Cruz and Nida Jemina won the A division doubles category while Miriam Rodriguez and Abner Fogardo claimed the B division doubles crown. The event attracted 36 players to the Grand Caymanian, its second highest turnout since inception.
American Debbie Most was a tournament spectator and states the memorial resonates with her.
“I’ve been coming to Cayman for 20 years and it’s good to see people concerned about their own,” Most said. “It gave me chills, it really touched my heart. I will always treasure this. I love Cayman, it’s a second home for me.”