Gary Anderson’s bid to reach the Premier League play-offs is well and truly on.
The Unicorn ace is back in the top four after a comprehensive win over Peter Wright.
Meanwhile Rob Cross has drawn level with Michael Smith on 14 points after a narrow win over the Unicorn man in Sheffield.
But after throwing away last week’s clash with Cross, the Scot got back on track for the semi-finals with an emphatic 7-2 victory over Wright....and but for missed doubles he would have won 7-0!
“I was angry after losing in Liverpool and missing all those doubles. I wasn’t happy with losing those two legs tonight but that was an important win and my destiny is still in my own hands,” he said.
Anderson will have a much better idea of how he stands after next week’s double header in Rotterdam where he plays Smith, Cross and Daryl Gurney over the two nights.
But he was superb against Wright in Sheffield, averaging nearly 105 and hitting five 180s.
After a comfortable hold of throw in the opening leg, Anderson nailed a magnificent 144 finish to double his lead. Then came a 177 to leave D16 for 3-0 and a first maximum to leave ‘tops’ for 4-0.
He then blew three darts for a 5-0 advantage and Wright got off the mark. In the next leg the Unicorn man hit five perfect darts on his way to making it 5-1 and after missing two darts for a 7-1 victory, he returned to finish Wright off with a 12 darter.
Smith will feel he should have got something out his match with Cross.
He hit five perfect darts in the opening leg but lost it after a Cross 180 and 107 finish. After going two down, Smith won three on the spin to hit the front.
At three apiece, the seventh leg was all important. Smith dominated before a 177 and 180 from Cross who then took out 62 to break. The World Champion was averaging 110 as he won four consecutive legs he missed one dart to win 7-3 which allowed Smith back into it.
The Unicorn star forced a deciding leg but despite a fourth 180 it was Cross who took the spoils on D16. But Smith knows he still has a marvellous chance of making those semi-finals.
Raymond van Barneveld 3-7 Daryl Gurney
Gary Anderson 7-2 Peter Wright
Michael van Gerwen 7-1 Simon Whitlock
Michael Smith 5-7 Rob Cross
Raymond van Barneveld 2-7 Peter Wright
1 - Michael van Gerwen 18pts
2 - Michael Smith 14pts
3 - Rob Cross 14pts
4 - Gary Anderson 11pts
5 - Daryl Gurney 11pts
6 - Simon Whitlock 10pts
7 - Raymond van Barneveld 8pts
8 - Peter Wright 8pts
Story from STUART PYKE in Sheffield
Photo courtesy Lawrence Lustig / PDC