DARTS over the festive season has become as much a part of the sporting calendar as football or, in days gone by, World's Strongest Man, but Burnham-on-Sea favourite Gary Anderson was unfortunately knocked out of the 2018 World Championships before the old year was out.

Anderson was beaten by Phil Taylor in the quarter-finals of what was 'The Power's farewell tournament - he went on to lose to Rob Cross, who stunned the world to lift the trophy having been playing pub darts for winnings of £7 just 18 months previously.

Burnham Rugby Club caused a shock by beating Burnham United Football Club at their own game, winning 4-3 in a highly entertaining New Year's Eve fixture - the football lads are out for revenge on New Year's Day.

The rugby club were not having as much joy in their chosen sport, however - a battling 19-10 victory over Crediton on January 6 was followed by a losing streak which lasted until April.

Amy Edmundson ended January on fire on the hockey pitch, scoring all four goals in Burnham's thrilling 4-4 draw with Taunton Vale, while there were also goals flying in from all angles in football matches involving Berrow & Highbridge - though unfortunately they were all going in one net.

B&H shipped 38 goals in just two matches before folding in mid-March, around the same time that the rugby club's relegation from Western Counties West was confirmed.

Burnham-on-Sea RFC captain Ross McKechan said the ending to the club's 10-year stay at that level was a "hideous feeling" but vowed they would come back stronger - their recent upturn in fortunes provides evidence that his belief was not unfounded.

On the fairways, Burnham & Berrow pro Liam Harper secured a superb victory on the PGA Mediterranean Tour in at Palm Hills in Egypt, setting a new course record in the process, and Brean Golf Club's new captain Chris Stephens got his reign off to a successful start as part of the winning trio in the AGM Shotgun Scramble.

The darts oches and skittles alleys were as busy as ever, meanwhile. Highbridge Social Club opened a new darts venue, well received by the region's players, and there was a shock in April's Highbridge & District Skittles League Knockout Cup final as Division 2 side Bombardiers stunned Division 1 high-flyers Steamers to take the silverware.

April saw the beginning of new campaigns on the track for the Somerset Rebels and Puriton motorcyclist TJ Toms.

The Rebels - with world champion Jason Doyle back among their ranks - got off to a poor start, beaten comfortably at Leicester, but quickly improved, while Toms earned his first points of the season at Brands Hatch on April 15.

The previous day had seen Burnham Ladies end their hockey season on a high, beating ECVH 3-0, but there was a tinge of disappointment at a seventh-placed finish which fell short of their top five ambitions.

There was more than a tinge of disappointment among cricket fans when, a matter of weeks into the county season, the ECB announced a new 100-ball format for their proposed new tournament from 2020.

Lympsham's Sophie Luff, who had won the previous summer's Kia Super League - a tournament put into grave danger by the proposals - with Western Storm, echoed the thoughts of many when she told the Weekly News the new format was "a bit odd."

May saw the annual Gullivers Rugby Festival come to Burnham-on-Sea, while the town's cricketers set the tone for a difficult season by going down to a defeat in their opening match.

The football season came to an end with defeat for Burnham United, though the club's A team had cause for celebration as they won the Weston & District Division 4 title.

June saw Tri-Ards seal a memorable treble in the Burnham, Highbridge & District Ladies' League and Wedmore's favourite son Jos Buttler made a successful return to England's Test team, scoring two half-centuries in the two-match series against Pakistan.

The month ended in drama at the Somerset Rebels, who released Charles Wright after an 'incident in the pits' against Wolverhampton. Little did anyone know at that point that he would be back in Rebels colours by the end of the season - see next week's Weekly News to find out how that went as we round up the second half of the sporting year.