Three out of three for sensational Smith

Michael Smith’s fantastic start to the 2018 Premier League continued in Newcastle!

The Unicorn star made it three straight victories as he swept aside Mensur Suljovic 7-2 to move to the top of the PL table on six points alongside Simon Whitlock.

Meanwhile Team Unicorn’s Gary Anderson lost a stunning match 7-3 against Michael van Gerwen but he could easily have won the match by the same score! Both players averaged 110 but Anderson’s missed doubles cost him dearly.

Smith though, was delighted after admitting he wasn’t at his best. “He missed and I hit, simple as that. It’s all about proving the doubters wrong and proving myself right. I think that I’m one of the best. Now I have to prove that, starting with this Premier League.”

Finishes of 72 and 68 saw the St Helens star go two legs clear before Suljovic levelled. But that’s as close as the Austrian got. Smith took out a crucial 116 finish on his way to winning five legs on the spin. He hit seven doubles from only 11 attempts - a 64% check-out success rate.

Smith really does look the real deal at the moment.

Anderson will be kicking himself for sure. It was a fabulous match but he missed nine darts at doubles - all crucial misses as well.

It started with a darts missed at ‘tops’ in the opening leg. Gary did take out 78 and 82 to draw level before an astonishing fifth leg.

Van Gerwen hit seven perfect darts only for Anderson to nail an incredible 170 check-out. He was then 3-2 in front.

But then his problems started. He missed D16 for a 112 finish to lead 4-3. Then he blew two darts at D18 and D9 to level at four apiece. In the next leg Gary missed three more. His end stats were 3/12 on the doubles while Van Gerwen was at 7/12

Elsewhere in Newcastle, Rob Cross won for the first time in the Premier League as the World Champion beat Peter Wright 7-4.

Gerwyn Price came from 1-5 down to snatch a draw against Daryl Gurney in a match which featured 10 x 180s. Both players are still without a win.

Whitlock’s third win came against Raymond van Barneveld....a comfortable 7-4 success for the Aussie.

Smith and Whitlock will face off in Berlin next week the winner will go clear at the top of the table.

Newcastle week 3 results:

Mensur Suljovic 2-7 Michael Smith

Daryl Gurney 6-6 Gerwyn Price

Peter Wright 4-7 Rob Cross

Gary Anderson 3-7 Michael van Gerwen

Simon Whitlock 7-4 Raymond van Barneveld

Berlin week 4 schedule:

Michael Smith v Simon Whitlock

Gerwyn Price v Mensur Suljovic

Michael van Gerwen v Daryl Gurney

Rob Cross v Raymond van Barneveld

Peter Wright v Gary Anderson

STUART PYKE reporting from Newcastle

Photo courtesy Lawrence Lustig / PDC