BRILLIANT LEWIS STORMS TO CORAL UK OPEN TRIUMPH
Lewis followed up his back-to-back World Championship triumphs in 2011 and 2012 and last year^s European Championship win with another major title as he took the £50,000 first prize by winning through the 138-player field in the UK Open.
The Stoke ace had defeated Raymond van Barneveld with a brilliant performance in Saturday^s Fifth Round and continued that form against Mensur Suljovic and Mervyn King on Sunday as he powered into the final with 10-3 and 10-6 victories.
However, he saved his best performance for the decider as he stormed to the title - averaging around 110 for the majority of a heavy-scoring clash, hitting six 180s and three 177 scores.
He also took out a 121 finish and reeled off nine successive legs as he secured victory, with a pair of 14-dart finishes in the final two legs seeing him average 109.13 in completing the heaviest win in a UK Open final.
"I^m so happy right now and it means a lot to me to win this," said Lewis. "It^s my first major of the year but I feel like I can go on to win a lot more now.
"This is the first time I^ve got past the quarter-finals in this tournament, so to go on and win it is a massive achievement for me.
"It^s been a really tough weekend but I^ve dug in deep and took my chances, and I^m delighted with how I played in the final. I^ve been playing like that in the floor tournaments in the last few months and I wanted to take it onto the stage.
"Terry^s been playing some awesome darts too and he^s taken the form of the last few months into this final, and I had to hit him straight away and I knew I^d have to play that well - but if he keeps this going he could win a major this year."
Lewis hit tops to break throw in the final^s opening leg before following a 180 by posting the same double to move two legs up, before Jenkins got off the mark in the game^s third leg, after his opponent missed two darts to continue his charge.
The pair traded 180s in the fourth leg as Lewis hit tops to deny his opponent a chance to level, before a superb 121 checkout moved him 4-1 up.
Lewis posted a 177 and a 97 finish in an 11-darter to win a third successive leg, hit tops to win the next and traded 180s once again with Jenkins in the eighth, as double ten moved him 7-1 ahead.
Lewis then hit two 180s to Jenkins^ one as he took out 81 for a 12-darter to lead by seven legs, and when the Ledbury ace missed tops for a 116 finish in the next a double eight checkout pushed the Stoke ace into a 9-1 advantage.
The 29-year-old then secured the title in style with back-to-back 14-dart legs, taking out 87 to complete one of the finest displays in the tournament^s history.
Jenkins, appearing in his eighth televised final, was left to again rue his luck as major honours eluded him once more, although he took home £25,000 as runner-up and enjoyed an outstanding 10-8 win over World Champion Michael van Gerwen in the semi-finals.
"Adrian was brilliant there in the final and he never gave me a chance," admitted Jenkins, who also qualifies for November^s Grand Slam of Darts by reaching the decider.
"He was relentless and he whacked everything in there, and I couldn^t keep up with him.
"I was leaving a double after 12 darts in some legs and not getting a look-in! Fair play to him because he deserved the title with a performance like that, but I^m proud of what I^ve done this weekend to reach the final.
"I^ve been playing well for the last few months and the small changes I^ve made to my darts are paying off.
"I hope I can win a major title eventually - I^d always said I^d retire when I got to 50 and that would have been six months ago, so this is a bonus! I^ll always keep plugging away and hopefully it will happen for me next time."
Jenkins^ semi-final win over Michael van Gerwen denied the Dutchman a third successive major ranking title, following last year^s Players Championship Finals triumph in Minehead and his World Championship win on New Year^s Day.
The world number one had enjoyed a 10-8 quarter-final victory over Ian White earlier on Sunday, and though he fought back from 5-1 down against Jenkins in the last four to level, he was forced to settle for £12,500 prize money.
King also took home £12,500 as he reached his first UK Open semi-final, with his run over the weekend seeing him complete the notable achievement of having reached the quarter-finals of every major tournament in the sport.
King defied the pain of an ongoing battle to recover from a bout of sciatica in his back in winning through to the semi-finals in Minehead, and said: "I^ve been working really hard and it^s paying off.
"Nobody likes losing and we all play to win, but I was adamant that Adrian wouldn^t walk all over me. He started off like that but I was determined to fight all the way and I^m not downbeat at all.
"I^m a work in progress and I feel miles better than I did 18 months ago. I^ve put such a lot of work in and it^s starting to work, and I^m seeing that in my performance."
The tournament had moved to the Butlins Minehead Resort following a decade in Bolton, with 4,500 fans packing the Somerset venue throughout the weekend alongside the field of professional stars and Rileys Amateur Qualifiers.
2014 Coral UK Open
Terry Jenkins 10-8 Michael van Gerwen
Mervyn King 6-10 Adrian Lewis
Best of 19 legs
Terry Jenkins 1-11 Adrian Lewis
Best of 21 legs
Terry Jenkins v Michael van Gerwen
1-0 - Jenkins hits a 180 to leave 36, and though he initially misses three darts to win the leg, van Gerwen^s miss at the bull and with two further darts at doubles allows the Englishman back in on double eight.
2-0 - Jenkins doubles his lead in superb fashion, hitting three 140s and taking out 81 for an 11-darter.
2-1 - Double eight sees van Gerwen get off the mark.
3-1 - van Gerwen lands a 180 but misses two darts at double top and ten to break throw, as Jenkins recovers from a pair of missed doubles to land double nine.
4-1 - Jenkins hits two 180s to set up the prospect of his third nine-dart finish inside four months, and though he misses a seventh perfect dart, he returns to land double 18 for another 11-dart leg.
5-1 - The players trade 180s before Jenkins takes out 56 on tops to move four legs clear.
5-2 - van Gerwen adds his third 180 of the game as he hits back.
5-3 - The World Champion lands two more maximums in an 11-darter to win a third leg.
5-4 - Another maximum from van Gerwen - his fifth in four legs - pulls him ahead, and though he misses five darts at doubles to win the leg, Jenkins is unable to steal on double top and ten to allow the Dutchman back on double three.
5-5 - van Gerwen finishes 118 on tops to level the game, winning four successive legs.
6-5 - Jenkins opens with a 180 before finishing 71 on tops to regain the lead.
7-5 - van Gerwen hits a seventh maximum, but is unable to capitalise on a miss at tops from Jenkins as he wastes darts at double 18 and nine to allow the Ledbury man back in to finish tops.
7-6 - van Gerwen takes out 90 on double ten to hit back.
8-6 - Jenkins moves two legs away from the final by finishing 116.
9-6 - Double ten puts Jenkins on the brink of his eighth major career final.
9-7 - van Gerwen takes out 134 on double 16 to stay in the hunt.
9-8 - van Gerwen opens with his eighth maximum before pinning tops to continue his fightback.
10-8 - Jenkins kicks off with his sixth 180s of the game, but misses double top for a 102 finish for the game - but van Gerwen misses the bull to finish 121 and Jenkins returns on tops to seal his place in an eighth major final.
Terry Jenkins: "I got a good start but I let it slide and Michael got it back to five-all, so I^m pleased that I finished it off. Michael^s brilliant and he had a patch where he hit lots of 180s, but as long as I kept scoring well I felt I could make him miss. I played really steady darts throughout the game and I^ve been doing that now for six to eight weeks. The way I^m playing, this is a great chance for me now and I^m feeling confident."
Mervyn King v Adrian Lewis
0-1 - Lewis finishes 80 for an immediate break of throw.
0-2 - Lewis lands tops to double his lead.
0-3 - Double two sees Lewis break once again to move three legs up.
1-3 - King gets off the mark with a break of his own as he takes out 24.
1-4 - Lewis posts tops as he regains his cushion, maintaining an average of 103.75 in the early stages.
1-5 - Lewis takes out 64 on tops to move four legs clear.
2-5 - Lewis misses darts at double 16 and eight, and King lands double four to hit back.
3-5 - The pair trade 180s as King continues his revival on double 16.
4-5 - King finishes a 13-darter to pull back to one leg behind.
4-6 - King misses a dart at tops for a 120 finish to level the game, and Lewis takes out 107 on tops.
5-6 - Lewis lands a second 180 of the game, but misses three darts at double 17 as King takes out 60 on tops to reply once again.
5-7 - Lewis misses double 18 for a 156 finish, but returns to land double nine to move three legs away from the final.
5-8 - King misses the bull to finish 85, and Lewis lands double 16 to take a three-leg cushion over his rival.
5-9 - Lewis hits his third 180 of the game and takes out double 18 with his third dart as he moves to the brink of victory.
6-9 - King opens with two 180s before Lewis adds a maximum of his own, and though the Bradwell ace is unable to complete a nine-darter, he lands tops to keep his hopes alive.
6-10 - Lewis hits his fifth 180s of the game, and seals victory on double eight with a 13-darter.
Terry Jenkins v Adrian Lewis
0-1 - Lewis lands tops to break throw immediately.
0-2 - Lewis posts a 180 before hitting tops to double his lead.
1-2 - Lewis opens with a 177, but misses two darts to win the leg as Jenkins replies on double top.
1-3 - The pair trade 180s before Lewis posts tops to regain his lead, maintaining an average above 103.
1-4 - Jenkins replies with a 180, but Lewis finishes 121 with an outer bull, treble 20, double 18 combination.
1-5 - Lewis fires in another 177 before takes out 97 on tops to move his average up to 110.
1-6 - Lewis posts his third 180 of the game and hits tops for a five-leg lead.
1-7 - The duo trade maximums before double ten sees Lewis win a fifth successive leg.
1-8 - Lewis opens with a 180, with Jenkins replying with a maximum only for Lewis to add another 180 before finishing 81 on the bull for a 12-darter to move three legs away from the win.
1-9 - Lewis fires in a third 177 of the game, initially missing two darts at double 19 before punishing a miss at tops from Jenkins for a 116 checkout by taking out double eight, moving two legs away from a fourth major title.
1-10 - Double 16 moves Lewis one leg away from the triumph.
1-11 - Lewis seals victory by taking out 87 for an 11-dart leg, securing the Coral UK Open title and a fourth major win.