We arrive in Gary Anderson’s neck of the woods in what can only be described as a partisan crowd. Most fans on the way in at the SSE Hydro in Glasgow were here to give their man rousing support; add to this, newly crowned UK Open Champion Peter Wright and you don’t have to look far to find out who the locals are siding with tonight.
Phil Taylor in maybe his last trip to Glasgow was up against his former protégé Adrian Lewis in the first match of the night. Taylor instantly brought the crowd to their feet with a maximum 180 and slotting home double 11 to take the opener against the throw. Lewis struck back instantly rocking in two maximums and doubling 10 to restore parity before Taylor himself notched two 180’s but was unable to stop Lewis taking out 80 on tops to move 2-1 up. Taylor had a tops finish of his own in the fourth leg after Lewis missed chances to extend his lead. Lewis clocked up a superb 171 and wired the double 8 on a 130 checkout but was allowed to return to make it 3-2 on double 2.
Leg six and it was Taylor with a maximum, his fourth of the match before he converted double 16 despite missing it on three occasions; with Lewis well behind he could only stand and watch as Taylor made it 3-3. More drama in the next as Taylor had first chance at the double but missed double 18 to break. Lewis strolled up to see off double 12 and gain a vital 4-3 advantage. Lewis took the next to put him in command, a 180 before taking out 25 on double 8 set him up nicely knowing that one leg would at least guarantee a point; and that’s exactly what he did, a fifth 180 and a tops finish from 60 guaranteed at least a share of the spoils. Taylor stopped the rot in the tenth leg on double 16 but it was to no avail as Lewis wrapped up the next to give him his first win and Taylors first defeat at The Hydro.
Phil Taylor 4 – 7 Adrian Lewis (Winning average – 98.71)
Next up James Wade faced the man in form Peter Wright. Wright kicked off in style with a thirteen dart leg on double 9 to break the Wade throw before totally losing his was in the second leg as Wade capitalised to make it 1-1 with a 65 out shot. Wade had a chance to sneak ahead but a miss on double 12 with his last dart allowed Wright in to punish the error and seal double 10 to regain the lead. Wade again was left to rue his chances as three darts at the double went begging and Wright brought the roof down with a fantastic 115 checkout on tops to move 4-1 up. It was soon 5-1 after Wade missed another double on 12’s and Wright capitalised moving in to sink tops. Wade pulled one back seeing off 100 to stop Wright’s surge and soon made it 5-3 after Wright missed the bull allowing Wade to sneak home tops. It was three legs on the bounce for Wade in an almost improbable comeback, holding his throw with his last dart on double 5 to make it 5-4. Could Wade make an almighty comeback?
A nine dart chance for Wright, kicking off with two maximums but it was not to be after the seventh dart floundered. It mattered little though as a small double 2 collected the rewards to guarantee him a point, 6-4. Wade was not giving up and an unlikely animated celebration for him suggested he was still up for a fight, making it 6-5, superbly taking out 76 under enormous pressure after Wright had missed tops for the match. Wright then brought to a close a totally absorbing match to claim maximum points and defy Wade in the last leg of the contest.
Peter Wright 7 – 5 James Wade (winning average – 95.42)
After missing last week’s Premier league and the UK Open it was now the return of Michael van Gerwen. How would he fare against the consistent Belgian Kim Huybrechts?
It was Huybrechts who made the better start, smashing in tops to open his account. He added a 180 in the next leg but was unable to utilise it as a brilliant 109 from the ‘Green Machine’ levelled the match. Van Gerwen missed two at double 16 in leg three as Huybrechts stepped up to nail double 18 and retake the lead. Van Gerwen responded with a top out shot to make it 2-2 before amazingly busting his score, pulling his dart down into the wrong bed as part of his combination whilst on 65. Huybrechts took his chance picking off double 1 to seize the leg. The world number one wasn’t behind for long, as a smart double 10 restored equilibrium at three all.
A break from van Gerwen was the outcome of leg seven as he put together seven perfect darts and despite that was still under pressure from Huybrechts. The Dutchman claiming the leg on double 4 to lead, 4-3. Not to be out done Huybrechts broke back instantly, finding a 76 out to make it 4-4. More brilliant darts from Huybrechts in the ninth leg, checking out 96 to give him the upper hand and leaving him just one leg away from a share of the spoils, 5-4. Van Gerwen was having none of it and responded to make it 5-5 guaranteeing that we would be going all the way. The wait for a Premier league win must go on for Huybrechts as he missed his lines, producing wayward darts, missing four darts on the doubles to give the break and advantage to van Gerwen who polished off 80. Van Germen made sure of all the points holding his throw in the last leg of the session to really punish Huybrechts wastefulness.
Michael van Gerwen 7 – 5 Kim Huybrechts (winning average – 106.3)
It was the battle of the Netherlands next as Raymond van Barneveld took on Jelle Klaasen. A trading of 180’s started the opening leg before Klaasen took a hold, landing tops for a brilliant 11 darter. Van Barneveld produced the perfect response with a 104 check out of his own to level proceedings. Klaasen took the next on double 2, then quickly fired off a stunning 111 checkout to move 3-1 up. Van Barneveld made another 180 in leg five but was powerless to stop Klaasen extending his lead to 4-1 with excellent finish prowess.
Van Barneveld pulled a leg back with a sensational 154 to get the gathered masses roaring from the terraces. Klaasen’s mistakes were starting to creep in now and he was duly punished by van Barneveld as he slotted 78 to trail by just the one leg, 4-3. It’s all level, as van Barneveld knocks in a double 12 to complete a tremendous comeback.
More mayhem at The Hydro as van Barneveld takes the lead with a 107 combination and it looks to have knocked the stuffing right out of Klaasen as he conspired to miss two darts at a double in the next, giving van Barneveld to make it 6-4 on double 8. In the final leg it was van Barneveld’s turn to miss doubles for the match and Klaasen sneaked in to nick the leg to give him some hope of salvaging a point. It was not to be for Klaasen and he’ll be left thinking of the chance he had to make it 5-1 as van Barneveld picked off the last double of the evening to take the points.
Raymond van Barneveld 7 – 5 Jelle Klaasen (winning average – 96.46)
Now the moment the crowd had been waiting for. Gary Anderson was about to take to the stage against the man in yellow Dave Chisnall. With the atmosphere cranked up a few notches he made no mistake in keeping them all happy racing in to a 2-0 lead with a break in the opener and two maximums in the second. If that wasn’t enough Anderson made a blistering 147 checkout to move 3-0 to the good; then 4-0 as double 14 was put to bed. Chisnall looked totally dazed as Anderson was running him to the sword, 5-0 with an 88 finish on the bull for Anderson despite Chisnall having five darts at a double.
Chisnall finally got on the board as this time it was Anderson who was careless, missing eight darts for a 6-0 lead, Chisnall finding double 5 in amongst the chaos. He then produced another leg on double 8 before adding another in the shape of an 86 checkout. 5-3, was Chisnall going to produce a van Barneveld style comeback?
Maybe not as Anderson secured at least a point to go 6-3 in front on double 6 before clinically dispatching Chisnall in the next to run out a convincing winner and send the ‘home’ fans away in raptures.
Gary Anderson 7 – 3 Dave Chisnall (winning average – 101.7)
Betway Premier League
Thursday March 9
The SSE Hydro, Glasgow
|Adrian Lewis 7||4 Phil Taylor|
|James Wade 5||7 Peter Wright|
|Kim Huybrechts 5||7 Michael van Gerwen|
|Jelle Klaasen 5||7 Raymond van Barneveld|
|Dave Chisnall 3||7 Gary Anderson|
|Michael van Gerwen||5||3||2||0||+9||8|
|Raymond van Barneveld||6||2||2||2||-4||6|