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PDC World Championship – Day Eight Report!

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Mensur Suljovic became the latest big name to crash out of the William Hill World Darts Championship after losing 3-1 to debutant Ryan Searle, whilst two-time world champion Adrian Lewis eased through to round-three on a dramatic Thursday night at the Alexandra Palace. Continue reading “PDC World Championship – Day Eight Report!”

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2017 PDC World Championship: Day Ten Report!

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Michael van Gerwen survived a massive scare against inspired Spaniard Cristo Reyes, as Raymond van Barneveld and Phil Taylor breezed through to the third-round of the World Championship with emphatic whitewash victories on day ten at the Alexandra Palace on Tuesday evening.

Van Gerwen saw off the challenge of an inspired Cristo Reyes to prevail in an absolutely sensational second-round clash. Van Gerwen averaged 105.24, hit 23 140’s, eleven maximums and converted 38% of his double attempts, as Reyes averaged 106.07; the highest losing average in the history of the World Championship.

‘Mighty Mike’ strolled to the first set without dropping a leg. The world number one opened his account on D7, before punishing a mediocre leg from the Spaniard to break throw. Reyes was yet to settle and ‘The Green Machine’ went for the kill; posting a 174 and converting an 11-dart leg on tops to secure the opener.

Nevertheless, Reyes launched a remarkable recovery to level up proceedings. Cristo won his first leg with a magnificent  10-darter on D18, before he hit the same double to complete a 73 outshot after MvG had missed three darts to hold. Reyes was brimming with confidence at this point, and rounded off the set with a confident 14-dart kill. Continue reading “2017 PDC World Championship: Day Ten Report!”

2017 PDC World Championship Day Three: Evening Report!

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Michael van Gerwen began his World Championship assault with an emphatic victory over Finnish qualifier Kim Viljanen, as Darren Webster and Cristo Reyes prevailed in thrilling last-set deciders against Stephen Bunting and Dimitri van den Bergh respectively in an incredible session of darts at the Alexandra Palace on Saturday evening.

Van Gerwen posted the highest average of the tournament thus far as he dropped just one leg en route to dismantling Viljanen. Viljanen set up his showdown with MvG after overcoming Canadian debutant Ross Snook in straight sets. The Finnish ace dropped just two legs; averaging 83.57 and converting 60% of his double attempts to progress.

However, the world number one was in merciless mood as he began his campaign in confident fashion. Van Gerwen averaged 103.34, landed five maximums and converted 45% of his doubles to breeze through to round-two, hitting two ton-plus finishes in the process.

Van Gerwen stormed to the opening set without reply, landing three maximums and averaging 110, as Viljanen failed to register a dart at double after posting just one score of over 100.

‘The Green Machine’ secured his fourth straight leg with a clinical 76 finish but Viljanen opened his account on D10 having narrowly missed a 160 outshot in  the preceding visit. MvG was unphased however; he hit his fourth 180 and took out 101 to regain the lead, before sealing the second set on D4 after overcoming some double-trouble.

The world number one continued his procession to the finishing line with a classy 78 checkout, before moving to the cusp of victory with an impressive 118 finish. Viljanen posted his second maximum as he attempted to double his tally, but Van Gerwen responded with his fifth 180, before pinning D10 to complete a comprehensive triumph.

Darren Webster survived SEVEN match darts as he dumped out former Lakeside world champion Stephen Bunting in another five-set thriller at the Ally Pally. Bunting led throughout but failed to cross the finishing line, as Webster prevailed with a 94.46 average, eight maximums and 43% on doubles.

Bunting edged a cracking first-set which saw Webster average almost 100. The opening two legs went against throw, before ‘The Bullet’ fired in a 118 finish to hold. Webster responded with a stunning 140 outshot of his own, but he was left to rue one missed set dart in the following leg, as Bunting converted 79 on tops to secure the lead.

The topsy-turvy nature of this contest continued as the first three legs of set two all went against throw. ‘The Demolition Man’ had chances in all three legs but was left to rue a multitude of missed doubles, yet he recovered to pin D8 for the fourth consecutive break, before clinching the set on D9 to draw level at one set apiece.

Bunting seized control by winning the opening two legs in set three, but Webster landed his third maximum and crashed in a stunning 157 checkout before defying Bunting’s second maximum to land tops and stay alive. However, Bunting had the throw in the set decider and maintained his composure by taking out 84 on the bull to regain his lead.

Webster remained undeterred and responded magnificently to clinch the fourth set without reply. He kicked off the set with a 14-dart leg, before converting an 81 finish to round-off a 12-darter after the pair had exchanged maximums. ‘The Bullet’ threatened a break back, but the Norfolk ace cleaned up the set by virtue of a majestic 147 checkout.

Bunting seized the initiative in the final set by holding throw, before breaking Webster with a stunning 11-darter. However, the former world champion then fired in a poor leg as Webster broke back on D16, before Bunting spurned two match darts on D16. Webster gratefully capitalised on this reprieve by taking out a classy two-dart 75 combination.

The sixteenth seed hit D10 with his last dart in hand to regain the lead, before leaving D8 after just 9 darts to close in on victory. However incredibly,  Bunting missed a further five match darts and ‘The Bullet’ was unable to recover from this setback, as the Norfolk ace wrapped up a stunning triumph with an 11-dart break followed by a fine 66 finish.

Webster has enjoyed a fine run of form over recent months but admitted he’s been working to address some technical flaws in his game. “I’ve been practicing for the last two weeks and watching videos from the Grand Slam and Players Championship. I noticed I was rushing my last dart, so I’ve been working in the last two weeks on composure and control.

“I know I can beat these people; I do it on tour. It’s about self-control and I’m now learning on that big stage to control myself, and when I do I’m up there with the rest of them. I’m like a dog with a bone me, and when they’re up there, I’m after them,” the 48-year-old added.

Cristo Reyes defied NINE maximums from Belgian starlet Dimitri van den Bergh to prevail in the match of the tournament so far. Van den Bergh averaged 99.11 and fired in nine 180’s, but Reyes averaged 95.54, landed four maximums and converted 12 of his 19 double attempts to edge through in a five-set thriller.

Van den Bergh made a storming start to win the opening set. The Belgian kicked off the contest with a maximum before breaking in 13 darts. Dimitri doubled his lead with a clinical 98 kill, but Reyes opened his account with a 130 checkout on the bull. However, Van den Bergh held his nerve to clinch the set on D4, with a set average of 103.71.

The Belgian took the opening leg of set two on D16 but Reyes found the same target to complete a 14-darter. The Spaniard continued his revival by converting a two-dart 64 kill, before levelling up proceedings at one-set apiece with his third straight 14-dart leg, after Van den Bergh had posted visits of 180 and 170 to leave D16 after just 12 darts.

Reyes secured the lead for the first time after nailing a two-dart 90 kill for his fourth leg on the spin, but the Antwerp ace found D16 to stop the rot. The next two legs were shared as the third set went to a decider, but it went in the favour of the Spaniard, who produced a majestic 124 checkout (T20, T16, D8) for a 12-darter to move within a set of victory.

Dimitri seized the initiative early in set four with a 64 kill, but Reyes continued his fabulous finishing by pinning D4 at the first attempt. The next two legs were shared with Reyes on the cusp of victory, but ‘The Dream-Maker’ held his nerve magnificently, firing in his seventh maximum before taking out 88 for an 11-darter to force a fifth set.

Reyes drew first blood in the final set, but Dimitri drew level on D2 after ‘The Spartan’ wired D11 for a 124 outshot. The pair traded maximums in a high-quality third leg which culminated in a Reyes 14-darter, but after Van den Bergh missed two darts at D8 moments later, the Spanish star sealed a memorable triumph with a nerveless 75 kill.

It was a fantastic contest and Reyes was unsurprisingly thrilled with his performance. “It’s all about practice. Last year here I was very bad, so I’m very happy with the way I played today. My objective next year is to stay in the top 32, but in darts you have to look up, not down.”

Photo: Lawrence Lustig/PDC

William Hill World Darts Championship
Saturday December 17

Evening Session (7pm)
Ross Snook 0-2 Kim Viljanen (P)
Cristo Reyes (32) 3-2 Dimitri Van den Bergh
Stephen Bunting (16) 2-3 Darren Webster
Michael van Gerwen (1) 3-0  Kim Viljanen

2016 World Series of Darts Finals Draw & Schedule!

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Michael van Gerwen will begin the defence of his World Series of Darts Finals title against either Gerwyn Price or Steve Beaton when the £155,000 tournament gets underway at Glasgow’s Braehead Arena this coming Saturday.

‘The Green Machine’ edged out Peter Wright 11-10 to win the tournament’s inaugural staging last year, which was the culmination of the annual worldwide tour. There were six World Series events held this year, in Dubai, Auckland, Shanghai, Tokyo, Sydney and Perth.

Van Gerwen will be top seed in Glasgow this weekend after topping the World Series of Darts rankings for the second year in succession. MvG won both the Shanghai and Perth Darts Masters, whilst he was also a runner-up in Dubai, Tokyo and Sydney.

The world number one will begin his campaign against either Gerwyn Price or Steve Beaton. Van Gerwen demolished Price 10-2 in the second-round of last week’s European Championship, whilst he also defeated Steve Beaton in the first-round of last month’s World Grand Prix. Continue reading “2016 World Series of Darts Finals Draw & Schedule!”

European Championship Day One Report: The world champ is whitewashed in Hasselt!

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Defending champion Michael van Gerwen survived a match dart in a thrilling tie against Simon Whitlock, as world champion Gary Anderson was whitewashed by James Wade in the opening-round of the European Championship in Hasselt, Belgium, on Friday evening.

However, the match of the night saw Michael van Gerwen come back from 5-3 down to edge out the rejuvenated Australian in a barnstormer. Van Gerwen endured a nightmare in the finishing department in the early stages, hitting just two of his 19 double attempts as Whitlock took out a stunning 170 outshot to lead 4-2.

Nevertheless, the world number one showed his class, landing four maximums, two 177’s and a 171 to instigate the fightback. MvG then spurned two match darts with Whitlock sat on 150 and ‘The Wizard’ found the requisite trebles, before wiring his match dart at D15. MvG returned to pin D8 to avoid a shock first-round exit.

Elsewhere, world champion Gary Anderson endured a horror show in Hasselt, as he was whitewashed 6-0 by James Wade. ‘The Machine’ averaged 94.93 and converted 75% of his doubles to secure his first ranking TV victory for ten months, after the world champion averaged a miserly 77 and had just two shots at double in the entire match.  Continue reading “European Championship Day One Report: The world champ is whitewashed in Hasselt!”

World Series of Darts Finals: Eight Global Invitations Confirmed!

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The eight global invitations for next month’s World Series of Darts Finals have been confirmed and Kim Huybrechts heads the list of global prospects, along with the likes of Benito van de Pas, Gerwyn Price and Daryl Gurney.

The World Series of Darts Finals features the eight players who competed in the World Series events hosted across the globe this year, with 16 other competitors accompanying them at the Braehead Arena, Glasgow, on November 5th and 6th.

The 16 other participants are made up of four wildcards, eight global prospects, and four further qualifiers. The four wildcards via the PDC Order of Merit were Robert Thornton, Michael Smith, Jelle Klaasen and Mensur Suljovic.

Elsewhere, Simon Whitlock, Steve Beaton, Brendan Dolan & Joe Murnan were the quartet who came through the World Series of Darts Finals qualifier at the Barnsley Metrodome last Sunday.

However, the field of eight global prospects is headed by former Premier League star Kim Huybrechts. The Belgian, currently ranked 15th on the PDC Order of Merit, has enjoyed a strong year in both floor and televised tournaments, reaching the World Grand Prix quarter-finals earlier this month. Continue reading “World Series of Darts Finals: Eight Global Invitations Confirmed!”

German Darts Championship: Day Two Report & Results!

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Peter Wright produced one of the finest European Tour performances in recent memory, averaging almost 114 on day-two at the German Darts Championship, as Michael van Gerwen overcame a battling Robbie Green in Hildesheim on Saturday evening.

Van Gerwen began his assault for a seventh European Tour title of the year with a hard-fought 6-4 victory over Robbie Green. The world number one averaged 99.83 and hit 46% of his double attempts to overcome ‘Kong’, who narrowly misses out on a qualification spot for the European Championships in Hasselt.

However, it was Peter Wright who produced the performance of the tournament thus far, averaging 113.77 as he recorded a comprehensive 6-1 victory over St Helens’ Eddie Dootson. Snakebite registered four maximums and hit six of his ten attempts at double, as Dootson claimed just the solitary leg, despite averaging a respectable 94.74.

International Darts Open winner Mensur Suljovic delivered a stunning performance as he swept aside Darren Johnson in round-two. The Austrian averaged a mightily impressive 106.22 and converted 55% of his attempts at double to set up a third-round clash with David Pallett.

Third seed Dave Chisnall breezed into the last 16 with a whitewash victory over ‘The Rock’ Peter Hudson. Chisnall averaged 102.48, landed three maximums and hit 43% of his doubles, as Hudson was afforded just the solitary dart at double in the entire contest. Continue reading “German Darts Championship: Day Two Report & Results!”

German Darts Championship: Day One Report & Results!

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Steve West produced one of the best performances ever seen on the European Tour as he whitewashed his brother Tony in round-one of the German Darts Championship, as Robbie Green, Mark Webster and Rowby-John Rodriguez also impressed on day one in Hildesheim.

Yet, it was Steve West who stole the show, producing an incredible display of scoring as he dismantled his brother in the opening match of Friday’s evening session. Steve defeated Phil Taylor in the World Grand Prix earlier this month, and continued his fine run of form with a sparkling display against the former World Masters winner.

Steve fired in SEVEN maximums and finished with an average of 109.98. Nevertheless, his first nine-dart average was an astonishing 400.33- the second highest recorded in PDC history. This keeps alive West’s hopes of qualifying for the European Championships, and he takes on former world champion Stephen Bunting on Saturday.

Former world champion Mark Webster enjoyed a welcome return to form after breezing past the veteran Mervyn King. The Welshman averaged 99.48, landed four maximums and hit 66% of his attempts at double to record a 6-2 victory, despite King averaging a very respectable 96.29.

Robbie Green produced the performance of the afternoon session as he stormed past former world champion Christian Kist 6-2. ‘Kong’ averaged 99.40 and fired in three maximums to set up a clash with Kist’s compatriot Michael van Gerwen; a clash which Green must win to remain on course to qualify for the European Championships. Continue reading “German Darts Championship: Day One Report & Results!”

2016 World Grand Prix Draw!

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Photo: Lawrence Lustig/PDC

World number one Michael van Gerwen will face the legendary Steve Beaton in the first-round of the World Grand-Prix, whilst reigning champion Robert Thornton will begin the defence of his title against Stephen Bunting at the Citywest Hotel, Dublin, next week.

The draw for the 2016 World Grand-Prix, which begins on Sunday October 2nd, was made live on the PDC’s official Facebook page, ahead of the final day of Champions League of Darts action.

Van Gerwen will take on 1996 Lakeside world champion Steve Beaton in round-one. Beaton has enjoyed a mini-resurgence this year, reaching the quarter-finals of the recent World Matchplay. However, ‘The Green Machine’ will be hoping to clinch a third World Grand-Prix title.

Robert Thornton, who defeated Van Gerwen in a thrilling final last year, takes on another former Lakeside champion Stephen Bunting. ‘The Thorn’ has endured a slump in form since winning his second major title last year, but he’ll be hoping that a return to Irish soil will have a galvanising effect on his fortunes.

Phil Taylor will go in search of an unprecedented twelfth World Grand-Prix crown against debutant Steve West. West secured his spot for this event by virtue of reaching the final of Players Championship 16 in Barnsley last week, which saw Vincent van der Voort miss out on qualification. Continue reading “2016 World Grand Prix Draw!”

European Darts Grand Prix: Day One Report!

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Van Barneveld returned to European Tour action with a bang! (Photo: Lawrence Lustig/PDC)

Raymond van Barneveld made a winning return to the European Tour after producing the performance of the night, as Max Hopp, Brendan Dolan and James Wilson all tasted victory on Friday at the Glaspalast Arena in Sindelfingen.

Van Barneveld marked his return to European Tour action with a high-quality win over debutant Scott Dale, who put in an impressive performance himself. Van Barneveld averaged 99.73 and landed four maximums, to record a fine 6-3 win in his first European Tour appearance since last October.

Barney and Dale both opened their account with 12 darters, before the Dutchman took out 74 in 15-darts to move 2-1 ahead.The 49-year-old then left himself on 36 after just 9 darts as he attempted to break, but he spurned darts at D18 and D9, as Dale levelled up on D6.

The youngster had an opportunity to break the Dutchman in the fifth leg. He missed the bullseye for a 130 kill but still seemed in control, until Van Barneveld fired in a magnificent 160 checkout for a precious hold.

Dale again restored parity at three apiece on D5, before the five-time world champion regained the initiative with a cool 60 checkout. However, the decisive blow was struck in the eighth leg, as Van Barneveld pinned D16 for a 15-darter and a precious break, to move within a leg of the second-round. Continue reading “European Darts Grand Prix: Day One Report!”

World Cup of Darts Day Two Report- England survive major scare!

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Photo: Lawrence Lustig/PDC

Defending World Cup champions England survived a major scare as they scraped past the excellent Spanish pairing of Cristo Reyes and Antonio Alcinas in a thrilling last-leg decider in Frankfurt on Friday evening.

Taylor and Lewis, who are bidding for a fourth World Cup crown this weekend, were pushed all the way by Reyes and Alcinas, who finished with an average of 95.68, the highest recorded in round-one of this year’s event.

The Spaniards broke throw in 13 darts in the opening leg, but Taylor led England’s recovery, hitting D16 to draw level, before taking out 128 on the bullseye to seize the initiative. Reyes drew Spain level by pinning D16, before Taylor converted a 49 finish with his last-dart to edge the number one seeds ahead once more.

Spain knocked England out of the inaugural staging of the World Cup in 2010 and a repeat performance appeared distinctly possible as Reyes converted 68 on D20 to restore parity at 3-3. The Spanish duo stole the darts in the seventh leg, but the turning point came when Cristo narrowly missed D20 for a 114 checkout and a vital break of throw.

Continue reading “World Cup of Darts Day Two Report- England survive major scare!”

Shocks galore at the German Darts Masters!

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Photo: Lawrence Lustig/PDC

It was an afternoon of shocks at the German Darts Masters, as James Wade, Robert Thornton, Kim Huybrechts and Terry Jenkins were all dumped out in round-two at the Ballhausforum, Dolce Hotel, Munich. Only two seeds from eight made it through, as the under-dogs prospered on Sunday afternoon.

Joe Cullen continued his fine run of form as he edged out eight-time major winner James Wade in a topsy-turvy contest. Cullen dominated the scoring stakes but only registered 27% on the doubles. ‘The Machine’ delivered a fine 141 finish to draw level at 4-4, but ‘The Rockstar’ won the final two legs to reach the third-round.

Chris Dobey produced the performance of the afternoon to defeat Robert Thornton 6-4 and reach the last 16. Dobey, mentored by world champion Gary Anderson, averaged 100.64 and fired in five maximums to dump out the World Grand-Prix champion. The youngster also registered 50% on the doubles to complete the upset.

Kim Huybrechts was another seed to tumble in round-two, as he was dismantled 6-1 by William O’Connor, who will be looking to replicate his run to the quarters here 12 months ago. The Belgian averaged a miserly 85 and hit just 16% on the doubles, and whilst the Irishman wasn’t at his best, he did enough to blow away ‘The Hurricane’.

Continue reading “Shocks galore at the German Darts Masters!”

Day Six: Chisnall and Jenkins progress, as Ronny dumps out Winstanley.

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Photo: Lawrence Lustig/PDC

Dave Chisnall, Terry Jenkins and Wes Newton all progressed through to the second-round of the World Championships, but Dean Winstanley became the ninth seed to depart the tournament, losing in a fifth set tiebreak to Ronny Huybrechts, at the Alexandra Palace on Tuesday evening.

Chisnall stole the show, as he produced a fine display to defeat exciting Austrian youngster Rowby-John Rodriguez 3-0 in the first-round of the World Championships at Alexandra Palace on Thursday evening. ‘Chizzy’ averaged 99.37 and posted four maximums to overcome ‘Little John’.

However, Rowby acquitted himself well; all three sets went to a fifth and deciding leg, but Chisnall ultimately delivered the goods in critical junctures of the contest.

Continue reading “Day Six: Chisnall and Jenkins progress, as Ronny dumps out Winstanley.”

World-Grand Prix Champ Thornton suffers first-round defeat in Hasselt!

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Photo: Lawrence Lustig/PDC

World Grand-Prix Champion Robert Thornton was sent packing at the first-round stage of the European Championships in Hasselt, as he was beaten 6-4 by fellow Scot John Henderson.

The Thorn, who secured his second PDC major in Dublin just three weeks ago, struggled for consistency throughout and Henderson took full advantage to progress through to the Last 16.

Continue reading “World-Grand Prix Champ Thornton suffers first-round defeat in Hasselt!”

World Cup of Darts- The Darkhorses

The 2015 World Cup of Darts gets underway in Frankfurt tomorrow evening, as Michael van Gerwen and Raymond van Barneveld aim to defend their title, to secure Holland’s 3rd World Cup title, in only the tournament’s fifth staging. England, Scotland and Holland are the clear favourites for the tournament, however there are a number of outsiders capable of shocking the bigger nations. Here’s my list of 5 potential dark-horses in this year’s tournament.

Continue reading “World Cup of Darts- The Darkhorses”

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