Raymond van Barneveld dumped out top seed Gary Anderson in a dramatic afternoon of quarter-final action at the German Darts Masters, as Peter Wright, Phil Taylor and James Wade also made it through to the semi-finals at the Castello Arena in Dusseldorf.
However, the match of the afternoon saw Raymond van Barneveld produce a masterful display of finishing to dump out top seed Gary Anderson. It was a topsy-turvy contest, but Van Barneveld won three straight legs from 8-7 behind to triumph with a 97.48 average, six maximums and a brilliant 71% checkout conversion rate.
The first six legs all went with throw, with Anderson dispatching finishes of 76, 121 and 64, whilst Van Barneveld followed up clinical 97 and 96 finishes by pinning D10 to level at three apiece.
However, the five-time world champion followed up his second maximum by pinning D16 to secure the first break of throw, before converting a clinical two-dart 64 kill to establish a 5-3 lead. Yet Anderson fired back, dispatching brilliant 84 and 132 finishes on the bullseye to level up proceedings at 5-5 heading into the interval.
Van Barneveld regained the initiative after the break, kicking off the 11th leg with seven perfect darts to break throw, before defying Anderson’s second 180 to peg tops and move 7-5 ahead. Nevertheless, ‘The Flying Scotsman’ responded once more; reeling off three legs on the spin to edge 8-7 in front.
Anderson then wired tops for a 104 outshot and this proved decisive. Barney restored parity at eight apiece with a nerveless 80 kill, before conjuring up an inspired 150 checkout to break the Scot and move to the cusp of victory. Anderson landed a fourth maximum in a bid to stay alive, but the Dutchman held his nerve; sinking tops to prevail.
This was Van Barneveld’s third win over the two-time world champion in 2017, and the legendary Dutchman admitted: “At the end that 150 helped me a lot. Gary was not at his ‘A’ game and neither was I, but we save that for the Worlds.”
RvB will take on UK Open champion Peter Wright in the semi-finals, after the world number three survived a match dart and recovered from 9-6 behind to defeat Mensur Suljovic in a dramatic decider. The Austrian appeared poised to secure a third straight televised win over Wright, but his late capitulation gifted Snakebite victory.
‘The Gentle’ appeared in cruise control at 9-6 ahead, but the Champions League of Darts winner uncharacteristically fell apart in the closing stages, spurning a match dart at tops in the eighteenth leg. Wright took full advantage; prevailing with a 94.62 average and nine maximums to keep alive his hopes of winning a maiden World Series crown.
Wright eased into an early 3-0 lead, but Suljovic responded by winning the next two legs to head into the interval 3-2 behind. Both men were averaging in the mid 80’s which prompted ‘Snakebite’ to change his darts, but it was Suljovic who upped the ante; converting majestic 121 finishes in successive legs to move 5-4 ahead.
The next five legs all went with throw as the Austrian edged 8-6 ahead, but Wright’s hopes appeared to be over moments later. He wired D13 for a 119 outshot to hold throw and Suljovic pounced; dispatching a 66 finish via D6 to move to within a leg of victory. Nevertheless, with the finishing line in sight, Mensur crumbled.
Wright preserved his hopes with a sublime 11-darter, before following up a ninth maximum by hitting tops to reduce the arrears to 9-8. The Austrian then again threw for the match, but he put a match dart at tops into the single five and Wright punished with D9 to force a decider, where he fired in a fine 14-darter to complete a fine comeback.
Elsewhere, Phil Taylor fended off a valiant fightback from newly crowned World Grand Prix champion Daryl Gurney to book his spot in the last four. Taylor led 7-3 at one stage, but Gurney won four of the next five legs to turn the screw, only for the 16-time world champion to triumph with a 100.40 average and a 63% checkout success rate.
The Stoke-on-Trent ace enjoyed a blistering start; heading into the first break 4-1 up with a 108 average and 100% on the doubles. He continued his magnificent finishing by piling in a 116 finish to move 5-1 ahead, before the next four legs all went with throw, with Taylor leading 7-3 at the second interval.
Nevertheless, Gurney rallied impressively to pressure the 57-year-old. The Northern Irishman pegged D10 with his last dart in hand for a pivotal hold, before punishing uncharacteristic doubling errors from ‘The Power’ to convert a two-dart 71 kill and reduce the arrears to 7-5.
Taylor was looking concerned as ‘Super-Chin’ pegged a fine 87 outshot to move to within a leg of levelling up the tie. However, the 16-time world champion managed to ride the storm as the next three legs all went with throw, before Taylor finally ended Gurney’s resistance; following up his fifth 180 with a 14-darter via D16 to seal his progression.
‘The Power’ will face James Wade in the last four after Michael van Gerwen’s earlier withdrawal. MvG was plagued by an ankle injury in his first-round tussle against Martin Schindler, but he didn’t recover overnight and opted to withdraw and recuperate ahead of a defining few months in the darting year, handing ‘The Machine’ a bye to the semis.
Photo Credit: Lawrence Lustig/PDC
2017 German Darts Masters
Saturday October 21
Afternoon Session (2pm local time)
Gary Anderson 8-10 Raymond van Barneveld
Peter Wright 10-9 Mensur Suljovic
Phil Taylor 10-7 Daryl Gurney
James Wade Bye (Michael van Gerwen withdrew through injury)
Best of 19 legs
Evening Session (8.15pm local time)
Raymond van Barneveld v Peter Wright
James Wade v Phil Taylor
Best of 21 legs
Van Barneveld/Wright v Wade/Taylor
Best of 21 legs