BDO world number one Glen Durrant regained his Finder Darts Masters title with a hard-fought 5-3 victory over former winner Jamie Hughes, as three-time world champion Anastasia Dobromyslova edged out home favourite Aileen de Graaf to claim glory in the Ladies event at the Hotel Zuiderduin on Sunday afternoon.
Durrant was in imperious form throughout finals day and controlled the match against ‘Yozza’, who battled resiliently and took out some crucial finishes to remain in contention. However, Glen monopolised the final in the scoring department; posting ten maximums and averaging 97.33, compared to Hughes’ 89.53.
Durrant opened up proceedings with a 19-dart hold, before doubling his lead with a clinical 111 finish. Hughes was struggling for consistency and the world number one rounded off a first set whitewash with a solid 16-darter culminating on tops.
Durrant levelled up proceedings with a 15-darter, before Hughes regained the initiative in the set with a stunning 157 outshot. ‘Duzza’ forced a fifth and decisive leg in the set after following up a maximum with a 63 kill, but ‘Yozza’ held his nerve, restoring parity at one set apiece with a 14-dart hold after the pair had traded maximums.
The pair exchanged comfortable holds in the opening stages of set three, before Durrant followed up a magnificent visit of 174 by pinning D16 to complete a high-quality 13-darter. The Teesside star landed a maximum to pressure Hughes throw, and after the Tipton ace bust a 70 finish, Durrant returned to regain his one-set lead.
Hughes responded with a comfortable hold to begin set four, before Durrant pinned D10 to level after ‘Yozza’ wired D12 for a 103 finish in the preceding visit. Hughes held throw with an impressive 81 finish to round-off a 14-darter, but the reigning champion responded in identical fashion; converting 70 in two-darts for a 14-dart hold of his own.
‘Yozza’ had the advantage of throw to restore parity, but Durrant fired in a timely 180 to leave 130 after just 9 darts. Nevertheless, the world number one displayed uncharacteristic profligacy by missing three set darts at tops and Hughes gratefully exploited this reprieve, hitting D12 to head into the interval level at 2-2.
Durrant banished his doubling demons by hitting tops at the first time of asking to win the opening leg after the interval. Hughes was yet to regain his fluency and ‘Duzza’ took full advantage, posting a stunning 174 en route to a 13-dart break of throw, before hitting D16 to clinch the fifth set without reply.
Hughes survived an early scare in the sixth set as Durrant missed one dart at D16 for a break, but ‘Duzza’ remained on his tail by holding with a classy 13-darter. The next two legs both went with throw, before Hughes defied a ninth maximum from Durrant to hold throw and once again draw level at three sets apiece.
Durrant had never been behind and this pattern continued early in the seventh set, as he held throw with an emphatic 13-dart leg. Hughes responded in fine fashion however, pinning D8 to complete a classy 92 outshot.
Hughes was finishing clinically, but Durrant was controlling the contest in the scoring department and hit another 13-darter to regain his lead, before clinching the seventh set with a 14-dart break to move within a set of retaining his crown.
The pair traded holds of throw at the beginning of set eight, before Durrant finally gained precious inroads to Hughes’ throw. The world number four wired D18 for a spectacular 156 finish and the 46-year-old pounced, converting an 80 finish to move within a leg of victory.
Hughes battled valiantly but the Teessider closed out victory in professional fashion; converting an 84 checkout to round off a 14-dart hold to regain his Finder Darts Masters crown.
Durrant had whitewashed Hughes 5-0 in the semi-final of last week’s Winmau World Masters, although ‘Yozza’ proved a much tougher nut to crack on Dutch soil, with just one set going against the throw.
Earlier in the day, ‘Duzza’ kicked off proceedings with a 3-0 victory over three-time world champion Martin Adams in the last eight, before reaching the final with another straight sets triumph against world number two Scott Mitchell.
Hughes’ progression was similarly emphatic. The world number four whitewashed 2014 World Master Martin Phillips in the last eight, before defeating former World Trophy winner Geert de Vos 3-1 to reach his second final at the Hotel Zuiderduin.
In the ladies section, Anastasia Dobromyslova edged out Aileen de Graaf in a topsy-turvy tussle to clinch her third title at the Hotel Zuiderduin, as De Graaf was left to rue one missed match dart in a nerve-jangling deciding leg.
Dobromyslova broke throw in the opening leg by pinning D16 at the first time of asking, before doubling her lead on D18; having narrowly missed a 116 checkout in the preceding visit. De Graaf was struggling for consistency as Anastasia wrapped up the first set with a clinical 62 finish to round off an impressive 15-dart leg.
De Graaf finally opened her account in the opening leg of set two, breaking Dobromyslova with a scrappy 22-darter. This gave the world number three a major boost, as she doubled her tally with a majestic 156 finish for a 15-dart hold.
Nevertheless, the Russian was unperturbed and fired straight back with a classy 120 kill of her own, before De Graaf, a former Zuiderduin winner back in 2013, held her nerve to send the final into a third and deciding set.
De Graaf had never led in the match and this pattern continued as Dobromyslova broke throw with a regulation 45 finish before recording an emphatic 16-dart hold to move within a leg of victory. The three-time world champion then landed her first maximum but De Graaf stayed afloat by nailing tops with her last dart in hand.
Anastasia had dominated the contest but De Graaf displayed impressive tenacity to force a deciding leg in the final set. She landed a timely 137 to leave 56 after 15 darts and again hit tops with her final dart. The 26-year-old Dutch ace had the advantage of throw in the decider but endured a torrid scoring leg, failing to leave a finish after 21 darts.
Anastasia left 64 after just 15 darts but initially bust her score, missing a total of six match darts to allow De Graaf a chance to convert 79 to snatch victory. Aileen wired one match-dart at tops, before Dobromyslova returned and hit the same target to clinch her third title on Dutch soil.
Finally, Justin van Tergouw retained his Youth title with a straight sets victory over Owen Maiden. Van Tergouw dropped just the solitary leg en route to recording a 2-0 victory in a repeat of the Winmau World Masters Boys final last week, as Justin delighted the Dutch crowd to win his 19th title of 2016.
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