Gary Anderson could potentially be ruled out of the remainder of the PDC Winter Series, after pulling out of Wednesday’s action with a knee problem.
‘The Flying Scotsman’ featured in Tuesday’s opening event but succumbed to Andy Hamilton, and having withdrawn from Day Two’s proceedings, he may not feature in the remaining three events at the Ricoh Arena.
The two-time world champion has been blighted by injury over recent years, pulling out of last year’s Premier League with a recurring back problem. However, the extent of his knee injury is not yet known, and he’ll be desperate to return to full fitness for the Grand Slam of Darts.
Anderson progressed to the final of the cross-code event in 2018, where he was beaten by Gerwyn Price in an infamous affair. As a consequence, he is due to defend £55,000 at the Grand Slam – which begins on Monday – where a disappointing showing could jeopardise his place in the world’s top ten.
Nevertheless, the Scot’s former protege Michael Smith has enjoyed a dream 48 hours in Coventry, claiming back-to-back Pro Tour titles as he triumphed on Day Two with a pulsating 8-7 success against Jose De Sousa.
‘Bully Boy’ clinched his first PDC title since July 2018 on Tuesday, defeating De Sousa in the semi-finals on that occasion, and he pocketed the £10,000 top prize for the second day in succession, recovering from 4-1 down to defeat the enigmatic ‘Special One’ in a last-leg shootout.
The world No 4 posted three ton-plus averages en route to glory, defeating Derk Telnekes, Matthew Dennant, Damon Heta, Dirk van Duijvenbode, Gabriel Clemens and Vincent van der Voort to progress to Wednesday’s showpiece.
Van der Voort impressed to reach his first Players Championship semi-final since April 2016, whilst quarter-finalist Clemens boasted an extraordinary tournament average of 107.72 over five matches – averaging 112.4, 105.9, 108.5 and 112 before perishing to an inspired Smith in the last eight.
De Sousa was denied a fourth PDC ranking title but he continued his strong start to the Winter Series, whilst Andy Hamilton and Rowby-John Rodriguez landed spectacular nine-dart finishes, achieving perfection in clashes against Christian Bunse and Boris Krcmar respectively.
Image Credit: Lawrence Lustig/PDC