Whitlock defeats nine-dart hero Huybrechts to win UK Open Qualifier Five!

whitlock-ronny-h

Simon Whitlock won his fourth Pro Tour title in as many months after defeating nine-dart hero Ronny Huybrechts to win UK Open Qualifier Five at the Robin Park Tennis Centre in Wigan on Saturday afternoon.

‘The Wizard’ defeated Gary Anderson to prevail in UK Open Qualifier Two seven days ago, and the Australian ace triumphed on Saturday once again to scoop the £10,000 winner’s cheque. Huybrechts landed a majestic nine-darter en route to the final, but succumbed to Whitlock in a Pro Tour final for the second time in just seven events.

‘The Beard to be Feared’ stormed into a 2-0 lead in the final, but Huybrechts responded strongly. He crashed in his first maximum and took out 84 for a 12-dart break of throw, before levelling with a 13-darter via D12.

However, Whitlock posted a timely maximum and pinned D4 with his last dart in hand to regain the lead. The two-time world finalist then registered a stunning visit of 177 and converted a quality two-dart 84 combination for an 11-dart leg; re-establishing his two-leg cushion.

‘The Rebel’ left D4 after just 12 darts as he attempted to fightback, but Whitlock dealt the potentially decisive blow; dispatching a clinical 87 outshot on the bullseye to move to within a leg of victory.

The Belgian continued to battle and followed up a maximum by pegging D8 for a 15-dart hold to stay alive, but he was unable to make further inroads. Whitlock had the advantage of throw and posted three successive 140s, before nailing D10 to secure victory inside 14 darts and continue his remarkable revival over the last six months.

Nevertheless, Whitlock’s day could have been very different after he survived two match darts against Michael Rasztovits in his opening match. ‘The Wizard’ then whitewashed Mick McGowan and edged past Brian Woods, before recording emphatic 6-2 victories over Scott Taylor and Mervyn King respectively to reach the last four.

Whitlock faced Rob Cross in the semi-finals, after the former Challenge Tour winner performed magnificently to claim a multitude of scalps. Cross had beaten Whitlock and Adrian Lewis in the previous set of qualifiers and repeated these heroics on Saturday afternoon.

Cross defeated the decorated quartet of James Wade, Dave Chisnall, Robert Thornton and Jelle Klaasen to reach the semi’s, but Whitlock proved an obstacle too far. Cross fought back from 3-0 down to level the contest at 3-3, but the Australian’s consistency proved decisive as ‘The Wizard’ triumphed by a 6-4 scoreline.

On the other side of the draw, Huybrechts came through an incredible four last-leg deciders to seal a place in his second Pro Tour final within five months. ‘The Rebel’ began his campaign with a hard-fought 6-4 victory over Kevin Dowling, before easing past Matthew Edgar to reach round-three.

Ronny dumped out world number two Gary Anderson in a pulsating deciding-leg clash to reach round-four, where he again prevailed in dramatic circumstances; edging out Terry Jenkins in an eleventh and deciding leg.

The veteran Belgian then recorded his third consecutive deciding-leg triumph against Ian White to set up a clash with Darren Webster. Huybrechts was in stunning form; recording a spectacular 9-darter in the second leg of the contest, before taking out a classy 124 checkout on the bull en route to victory.

In the semi-finals, Ronny faced Michael Smith, who continued his strong start to 2017 with another excellent run. ‘Bully-Boy’ beat Vincent van der Voort and edged out Peter Wright and Gerwyn Price in deciding-leg tussles, before spurning four match darts against Huybrechts, who took out a 106 kill to prevail in a nerve-jangling affair to reach the final.

After Michael van Gerwen’s astonishing pair of nine-darters in Friday’s event, there were a further two perfect legs recorded today. Darren Webster achieved the first of the day en route to edging out Benito van de Pas in the fourth round, but ‘The Demolition Man’ was on the receiving end of Huybrechts’ brilliance in the last eight.

Eight-time major winner James Wade suffered an opening-round defeat, after losing to eventual semi-finalist Rob Cross, whilst two-time world champion Adrian Lewis also failed to record victory on Saturday after losing a last-leg decider to Richard North.

Seven-time PDC ranking winner Jamie Caven is yet to win a game in his UK Open qualification campaign after suffering a narrow defeat to Paul Milford, whilst Stephen Bunting was beaten in round-two for the second consecutive day after losing out to close friend David Pallett.

Five-time world champion Raymond van Barneveld continued his consistent run of form, reaching the last 16 for the fourth time in five qualifiers. Van Barneveld dropped just seven legs in beating Mark Dudbridge, Greg Ritchie and James Richardson, before losing to an inspired Gerwyn Price, who posted eight maximums in as many legs.

World champion Michael van Gerwen opted to withdraw from today’s event after his astonishing exploits on Friday, which confirmed his spot in the third-round of the UK Open Finals next month. Elsewhere, world number eight Mensur Suljovic was again absent due to personal reasons.

Photo Credit: Lawrence Lustig/PDC

Coral UK Open Qualifier Five
Saturday February 11
Preliminary Round

Mark Forman 6-4 Jon Jukes
Josh Payne 6-4 John Bowles
Barrie Bates 6-2 Ian Lever
Sean Ryan 6-3 Ben Ward

First Round
Justin Pipe bye
Robert Owen 6-4 Michael Burgoine
Ross Twell 6-4 James Hubbard
Darren Johnson 6-3 Yordi Meeuwisse
Stephen Bunting bye
David Pallett 6-0 Nick Jennins
Robbie Green 6-4 Devon Peterson
Ryan Murray 6-2 Steve McNally
Benito van de Pas bye
Ryan De Vreede 6-5 Roxy-James Rodriguez
Jan Dekker 6-4 Richie Burnett
Jonathan Worsley 6-1 Coni Singh Nagi
Darren Webster bye
Keegan Brown 6-5 Martyn Turner
Rob Hewson 6-5 Jeffrey De Zwaan
Michael Barnard v Mark Forman
Terry Jenkins bye
Mick Todd 6-2 Matthew Dennant
Eikichi Nakanishi 6-5 Par Riihonen
Andy Jenkins 6-0 Sven Groen
Gary Anderson bye
Jermaine Wattimena 6-0 Roger Scrivens
Matthew Edgar 6-1 Jack Todd
Ronny Huybrechts 6-4 Kevin Dowling
Ian White bye
Dave Ladley 6-5 Jeff Batham
Bryan De Hoog 6-4 Dyson Parody
Shaun Griffiths 6-4 Craig Gilchrist
Brendan Dolan bye
Martin Schindler 6-1 Jim Brown
Kevin Painter 6-4 Rowby-John Rodriguez
Mark Hylton 6-1 Mike De Decker
Raymond van Barneveld bye
Mark Dudbridge 6-0 Willy van de Wiel
Sam Head 6-5 Kelvin Hart
Greg Ritchie 6-1 Alan Tabern Jnr
Kyle Anderson bye
Kirk Shepherd 6-4 Jeffrey De Graaf
Callum Loose 6-2 Vincent Kamphuis
James Richardson 6-4 Simon Stevenson
Gerwyn Price bye
Chris Dobey 6-2 Paul Nicholson
Dylan Duo 6-5 Joshua Richardson
Yuki Yamada 6-4 Wes Newton
Alan Norris bye
WIlliam O’Connor 6-0 Jamie Bain
Nigel Daniels 6-2 Bradley Brooks
Darron Brown 6-5 Harry Ward
Adrian Lewis bye
Richard North 6-2 John Brown
Berry van Peer 6-2 Jerry Hendriks
Eddie Dootson 6-3 Maik Langendorf
Peter Wright bye
Jason Wilson 6-1 Billy Holmes
Matt Clark 6-2 Joe Davis
Wayne Jones 6-5 Gary Stone
Vincent van der Voort bye
Dirk van Duijvenbode 6-2 Ryan Harrington
Aden Kirk 6-3 Ryan Searle
Justin Smith 6-5 Ray Campbell
Michael Smith bye
Lee Bryant 6-1 James Hadjar
Paul Rowley 6-0 Paul Reeve
Steve West 6-2 Luke Woodhouse
Daryl Gurney bye
Ron Meulenkamp 6-5 Dean Stewart
Martin Lukeman 6-0 Jay Forman
Ricky Williams 6-4 Andy Boulton
John Henderson bye
Ted Evetts  6-0 Jim Walker
Dimitri van den Bergh 6-2 Ryan Meikle
Joe Murnan 6-0 Josh Payne
Jelle Klaasen bye
Mark Westgarth 6-2 Sheamus Hagan
Steve Brown 6-4 Mareno Michels
Chris Quantock 6-5 Diogo Portela
Joe Cullen bye
Max Hopp 6-2 Nathan Aspinall
Stuart Kellett 6-4 Kevin McDine
John Crossley 6-3 Rene Eidams
Dave Chisnall bye
Christian Kist  6-1 Barry Lynn
Jonny Clayton 6-2 John Part
Ricky Evans 6-5 Terry Temple
James Wade bye
Rob Cross 6-2 Scott Dale
Ting Chi Royden Lam 6-0 Arron Monk
Mark Frost 6-4 Simon Cassidy
Jamie Lewis bye
Peter Hudson 6-3 Scott Rollings
Ronnie Baxter 6-3 Dennis Smith
Kai Fan Leung 6-3 Madars Razma
Robert Thornton bye
Dawson Murschell 6-4 Jim Moston
Ryan Palmer 6-3 Richie Corner
Andreas Hajimina 6-3 Shane Reidy
Mark Webster bye
Richard Baillie 6-3 Mario Robbe
James Wilson 6-4 Stephen Burton
Adam Smith-Neale 6-3 Andy Hamilton
Mervn king bye
Luke Humphries 6-1 Kurt Parry
Zoran Lerchbacher 6-3 James Young
Steve Douglas 6-3 Derek Brand
Kim Huybrechts bye
Ritchie Edhouse 6-5 Nick Fullwell
Allan Candlish 6-3 Nigel Pinchen
Prakash Jiwa 6-5 Terry Roach
Andrew Gilding bye
James Lane 6-5 Adrian Gray
Callan Rydz 6-5 Wilco Vermeulen
Barrie Bates 6-5 Colin Roelofs
Jamie Caven bye
Paul Milford 6-4 Curtis Hammond
Martin Thomas 6-0 Rohit Rabadia
Brian Woods 6-3 Alan Tabern
Simon Whitlock bye
Michael Rasztovits 6-3 John Michael
Mick McGowan 6-5 Adam Hunt
Ricky Sudale 6-3 Charlie Jackson
Steve Beaton bye
Steve Lennon 6-2 Antonio Alcinas
Tony Newell 6-3 Jimmy Hendriks
Scott Taylor 6-1 Michael Huntley
Cristo Reyes bye
Mark Walsh 6-0 Andy Parsons
Nathan Derry 6-3 Mark Stephenson
Matt Padgett 6-0 Ryan/Ward

Second Round
Justin Pipe 6-1 Robert Owen
Ross Twell 6-4 Darren Johnson
David Pallett 6-4 Stephen Bunting
Robbie Green 6-4 Ryan Murray
Benito van de Pas 6-0 Ryan De Vreede
Jonathan Worsley 6-3 Jan Dekker
Darren Webster 6-4 Keegan Brown
Rob Hewson 6-5 Michael Barnard
Terry Jenkins 6-4 Mick Todd
Andy Jenkins 6-0 Eikichi Nakanishi
Gary Anderson 6-3 Jermaine Wattimena
Ronny Huybrechts 6-2 Matthew Edgar
Ian White 6-1 Dave Ladley
Shaun Griffiths 6-3 Bryan De Hoog
Brendan Dolan 6-5 Martin Schindler
Kevin Painter 6-3 Mark Hylton
Raymond van Barneveld 6-1 Mark Dudbridge
Greg Ritchie 6-5 Sam Head
Kyle Anderson 6-3 Kirk Shepherd
James Richardson 6-1 Callum Loose
Gerwyn Price 6-5 Chris Dobey
Yuki Yamada 6-4 Dylan Duo
William O’Connor 6-4 Alan Norris
Nigel Daniels 6-2 Darron Brown
Richard North 6-5 Adrian Lewis
Berry van Peer 6-5 Eddie Dootson
Peter Wright 6-4 Jason Wilson
Wayne Jones 6-3 Matt Clark
Vincent van der Voort 6-4 Dirk van Duijvenbode
Aden Kirk 6-0 Justin Smith
Michael Smith 6-4 Lee Bryant
Paul Rowley 6-5 Steve West
Daryl Gurney 6-2 Ron Meulenkamp
Martin Lukeman 6-4 Ricky Williams
Ted Evetts 6-2 John Henderson
Dimitri Van den Bergh 6-1 Joe Murnan
Jelle Klaasen 6-3 Mark Westgarth
Steve Brown 6-4 Chris Quantock
Joe Cullen 6-4 Max Hopp
Stuart Kellett 6-3 John Crossley
Dave Chisnall 6-5 Christian Kist
Ricky Evans 6-2 Jonny Clayton
Rob Cross 6-5 James Wade
Mark Frost 6-4 Ting Chi Royden Lam
Jamie Lewis 6-1 Peter Hudson
Kai Fan Leung 6-1 Ronnie Baxter
Robert Thornton 6-4 Dawson Murschell
Ryan Palmer 6-3 Andreas Hajimina
Mark Webster 6-2 Richard Baillie
James Wilson 6-4 Adam Smith-Neale
Mervyn King 6-3 Luke Humphries
Zoran Lerchbacher 6-2 Steve Douglas
Kim Huybrechts 6-3 Ritchie Edhouse
Allan Candlish 6-2 Prakash Jiwa
Andrew Gilding 6-2 James Lane
Barrie Bates 6-2 Callan Rydz
Paul Milford 6-4 Jamie Caven
Brian Woods 6-2 Martin Thomas
Simon Whitlock 6-5 Michael Rasztovits
Mick McGowan 6-4 Ricky Sudale
Steve Beaton 6-3 Steve Lennon
Scott Taylor 6-2 Tony Newell
Mark Walsh 6-5 Cristo Reyes
Matt Padgett 6-5 Nathan Derry

Third Round
Ross Twell 6-1 Justin Pipe
David Pallett 6-2 Robbie Green
Benito van de Pas 6-3 Jonathan Worsley
Darren Webster 6-1 Rob Hewson
Terry Jenkins 6-4 Andy Jenkins
Ronny Huybrechts 6-5 Gary Anderson
Ian White 6-1 Shaun Griffiths
Brendan Dolan 6-5 Kevin Painter
Raymond van Barneveld 6-4 Greg Ritchie
James Richardson 6-3 Kyle Anderson
Gerwyn Price 6-1 Yuki Yamada
William O’Connor 6-3 Nigel Daniels
Richard North 6-5 Berry van Peer
Peter Wright 6-4 Wayne Jones
Vincent van der Voort 6-4 Aden Kirk
Michael Smith 6-4 Paul Rowley
Daryl Gurney 6-1 Martin Lukeman
Ted Evetts 6-4 Dimitri van den Bergh
Jelle Klaasen 6-1 Steve Brown
Joe Cullen 6-4 Stuart Kellett
Dave Chisnall 6-2 Ricky Evans
Rob Cross 6-1 Mark Frost
Kai Fan Leung 6-4 Jamie Lewis
Robert Thornton 6-5 Ryan Palmer
James Wilson 6-3 Mark Webster
Mervyn King 6-0 Zoran Lerchbacher
Kim Huybrechts 6-2 Allan Candlish
Barrie Bates 6-5 Andrew Gilding
Brian Woods 6-2 Paul Milford
Simon Whitlock 6-0 Mick McGowan
Scott Taylor 6-4 Steve Beaton
Matt Padgett 6-3 Mark Walsh

Fourth Round
David Pallett 6-2 Ross Twell
Darren Webster 6-5  Benito van de Pas
Ronny Huybrechts 6-5 Terry Jenkins
Ian White 6-5 Brendan Dolan
Raymond van Barneveld 6-2 James Richardson
Gerwyn Price 6-2 William O’Connor
Peter Wright 6-4 Richard North
Michael Smith 6-3 Vincent van der Voort
Daryl Gurney 6-1 Ted Evetts
Jelle Klaasen 6-4 Joe Cullen
Rob Cross 6-2 Dave Chisnall
Robert Thornton 6-3 Kai Fan Leung
Mervyn King 6-5 James Wilson
Kim Huybrechts 6-4 Barrie Bates
Simon Whitlock 6-4 Brian Woods
Scott Taylor 6-5 Matt Padgett

Fifth Round
Darren Webster 6-1 David Pallett
Ronny Huybrechts 6-5 Ian White
Gerwyn Price 6-2 Raymond van Barneveld
Michael Smith 6-5 Peter Wright
Jelle Klaasen 6-3 Daryl Gurney
Rob Cross 6-1 Robert Thornton
Mervyn King 6-5 Kim Huybrechts
Simon Whitlock 6-2 Scott Taylor

Quarter-Finals
Ronny Huybrechts 6-4 Darren Webster
Michael Smith 6-5 Gerwyn Price
Rob Cross 6-2 Jelle Klaasen
Simon Whitlock 6-2 Mervyn King

Semi Finals
Ronny Huybrechts 6-5 Michael Smith
Simon Whitlock 6-4 Rob Cross

Final
Simon Whitlock 6-3 Ronny Huybrechts

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