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Article: Darts: Baxter Wins Las Vegas Players Championship

Darts: Baxter Wins Las Vegas Players Championship

Ronnie Baxter defeated Phil Taylor 6-2 to win the Las Vegas Players Championship.

Baxter picked up his first tournament win of 2009 with the £6,000 title at the Mandalay Bay Resort, condemning Taylor to only his second Players Championship loss of the year with a fine display.

Having been pushed all the way to a deciding leg by Japan^s Morihiro Hashimoto in the first round, he then defeated Davis Snider, Wayne Mardle, Kevin Painter and John Part to reach the semi-finals.

He then overcame Peter Wright 6-3 before taking victory against Taylor.

Baxter opened the final with a 121 finish and also led 2-0 before Taylor took out 104 to get off the mark.

Double eight and double 16 put Baxter 4-1 up before a 13-darter saw him move a leg away from victory.

Taylor fired in a 128 checkout for a 12-darter to stay in the game, but a 180 from Baxter sent him clear in the next - and he had enough breathing space to miss seven match darts before landing double one for the title.

Taylor, making his first outing since winning the Blue Square UK Open in Bolton recently after struggling with a bad back since, warmed up nicely for the defence of his Las Vegas Desert Classic title.

He saw off American duo Darin Young and John Kuczynski before whitewashing Rocco Maes and Simon Whitlock to reach the quarter-finals.

The world number one came from 4-3 down to defeat Alan Tabern 6-4 in the quarters, and saw off Gary Anderson 6-2 in the semis.

Wright^s run to the last four was his best-ever on the PDC Pro Tour, and should secure him a place in the World Matchplay - coming two days after he also qualified for the Desert Classic.

The Lowestoft player^s run included a whitewash of Colin Lloyd and a 6-1 win over Dennis Priestley, as well as a 6-3 defeat of Co Stompe in the last eight.

The tournament featured a brace of nine-darters, with Larry Butler and Wes Newton sharing an £800 bonus for the achievement.

Both, however, went on to lose the matches they were playing at the time, with Butler going down to Jan van der Rassel and Newton losing to Colin Osborne.

Wright^s run jumps him above Kevin McDine in the list of 16 qualifiers for the World Matchplay from the Players Championship Order of Merit.

However, they will be finalised following the Desert Classic - when the PDC^s top 16 qualify by right for July^s Blackpool event, meaning a player could still break into the top 16 with a good run over the next five days.

The Las Vegas Desert Classic begins on Wednesday and will be played through to Sunday at the Mandalay Bay Resort, and screened live on Sky Sports in the UK.

Las Vegas Players Championship

First Round

Chris White 6-1 Neil Dickson

Simon Whitlock 6-5 Lee Williams

Sean Palfrey 6-1 David Ansell

Paul Lim 6-1 Jim McKevitt

Mark Carter 6-4 Jacko Barry

Michael Putz 6-2 Gary Storey

Jan van der Rassel 6-2 Louis Blundell

Roland Scholten 6-4 John Quantock

Scott Burnett 6-0 Ken MacNeil

Mick McGowan 6-4 Stephen Panuncialman

Phillip Hazel 6-5 Gislain Tremblay

Darren Johnson 6-5 John Murray

Chuck Pankow 6-0 Kevin Fletcher

Peter Wright 6-5 Dennis Smith

Gary Barnett 6-2 Joe Formica

Davis Snider 6-3 Brian Jones

Jon Archer 6-4 Jeff Angione

Ian Jopling Bye (Andy Fordham retired with back injury)

Robert Heckman 6-1 Matt Jackson

John Part 6-0 John Latchic

Second Round

Phil Taylor (1) 6-1 John Kuczynski

Darin Young 6-4 Chris White

Matt Clark (32) 6-1 Robert Race

Rocco Maes 6-2 Tyler Hayne

Michael van Gerwen (16) v Mark Lawrence

Simon Whitlock 6-0 John Denich

Andy Smith (17) 6-1 Tony Ayres

Sean Palfrey 6-0 Cory Donham

Alan Tabern (8) 6-3 Stuart Holden

Paul Lim 6-2 Pete Riehl

Jelle Klaasen (25) 6-1 Dan Lauby

Shane O^Connor 6-0 Mark Venable

Gerry Convery 6-5 Terry Jenkins (9)

Mark Carter 6-3 Robbie Newland

Paul Knighton 6-5 Tony Eccles (24)

Davey Mansell 6-0 Martin Hulme

James Wade (5) 6-4 Mark Webster

James Barton 6-0 Michael Putz

Steve Maish (28) 6-0 Andrew Bennett

Bill Davis 6-0 Brian Rowe

Andy Hamilton (12) 6-1 Gary Mawson

Jan van der Rassel 6-2 Larry Butler - Larry Butler hits nine-darter

Jamie Caven (21) 6-1 Scott Henning

Mark Tiller 6-1 Simon Craven

Robert Thornton (4) 6-0 Sam Rooney

Roland Scholten 6-1 Adrian W Lewis

Raymond van Barneveld (29) 6-0 Ryan Vander Weit

Jim Newman 6-1 Karl Loiseau

Gary Anderson (13) 6-2 Jeff Hubbard

Scott Burnett 6-2 Paul DiCecca

Adrian Lewis (20) 6-1 David Wilderman

Kevin Harris 6-4 Mick McGowan

Mark Walsh (2) 6-5 David Fatum

Phillip Hazel 6-5 Bertrand Lajoie

Co Stompe (31) 6-4 Ray Carver

Steve Hine 6-4 Darren Latham

Mark Dudbridge (15) 6-2 Nick Fullwell

Darren Johnson 6-0 Sato Fumihiro

Vincent van der Voort (18) 6-5 Steve Brown

Colin Monk 6-3 Chuck Pankow

Colin Lloyd (7) 6-4 Chris Cooper

Peter Wright 6-1 Dan Zimmerman

Peter Manley (26) 6-1 Andy Mason

Timmy Nicoll 6-0 Drazen Severin

Dennis Priestley (10) 6-1 Joe Cullen

Bryan de Hoog 6-0 Gary Barnett

Andy Jenkins (23) 6-2 Martyn Turner

Barrie Bates 6-0 Marc Garcia

Ronnie Baxter (6) 6-5 Morihiro Hashimoto

Davis Snider 6-1 Steve Gooch

Wayne Mardle (27) 6-3 Jason Clark

Steve Grubb 6-5 Mark Stephenson

Mervyn King (11) 6-0 Ron Peppers

Kirk Shepherd 6-1 Jon Archer

Kevin Painter (22) 6-1 Eddie Lawrence

Mark Nielsen 6-4 Kevin Hill

Colin Osborne (3) 6-3 Par Riihonen

Kevin Dowling 6-3 Ian Jopling

Wes Newton (30) 6-4 Dave Ladley

Dieter Schutsch 6-2 Joe DaVanti

Denis Ovens (14) 6-1 Joseph Bodrogi

Robert Heckman 6-2 Stacy Bromberg

Steve Beaton (19) 6-2 Kevin McDine

John Part 6-0 Anthony Thompson

Third Round

Phil Taylor 6-2 Darin Young

Rocco Maes 6-5 Matt Clark

Simon Whitlock 6-3 Michael van Gerwen

Sean Palfrey 6-5 Andy Smith

Alan Tabern 6-3 Paul Lim

Jelle Klaasen 6-5 Shane O^Connor

Mark Carter 6-4 Gerry Convery

Paul Knighton 6-1 Davey Mansell

James Wade 6-5 James Barton

Bill Davis 6-3 Steve Maish

Andy Hamilton 6-3 Jan van der Rassel

Jamie Caven 6-0 Mark Tiller

Robert Thornton 6-1 Roland Scholten

Jim Newman 6-5 Raymond van Barneveld

Gary Anderson 6-1 Scott Burnett

Adrian Lewis 6-3 Kevin Harris

Mark Walsh 6-4 Phillip Hazel

Co Stompe 6-2 Steve Hine

Mark Dudbridge 6-4 Darren Johnson

Vincent van der Voort 6-3 Colin Monk

Peter Wright 6-0 Colin Lloyd

Peter Manley 6-3 Timmy Nicoll

Dennis Priestley 6-3 Bryan de Hoog

Barrie Bates 6-3 Andy Jenkins

Ronnie Baxter 6-2 Davis Snider

Wayne Mardle 6-2 Steve Grubb

Mervyn King 6-4 Kirk Shepherd

Kevin Painter 6-0 Mark Nielsen

Colin Osborne 6-3 Kevin Dowling

Wes Newton 6-2 Dieter Schutsch

Denis Ovens 6-1 Robert Heckman

John Part 6-3 Steve Beaton

Losers £200

Fourth Round

Phil Taylor 6-0 Rocco Maes

Simon Whitlock 6-0 Sean Palfrey

Alan Tabern 6-5 Jelle Klaasen

Paul Knighton 6-5 Mark Carter

James Wade 6-4 Bill Davis

Andy Hamilton 6-3 Jamie Caven

Robert Thornton 6-2 Jim Newman

Gary Anderson 6-3 Adrian Lewis

Co Stompe 6-3 Mark Walsh

Mark Dudbridge 6-3 Vincent van der Voort

Peter Wright 6-3 Peter Manley

Dennis Priestley 6-4 Barrie Bates

Ronnie Baxter 6-4 Wayne Mardle

Kevin Painter 6-3 Mervyn King

Colin Osborne 6-3 Wes Newton - Wes Newton hits nine-darter

John Part 6-4 Denis Ovens

Losers £300

Fifth Round

Phil Taylor 6-0 Simon Whitlock

Alan Tabern 6-1 Paul Knighton

James Wade 6-4 Andy Hamilton

Gary Anderson 6-3 Robert Thornton

Co Stompe 6-3 Mark Dudbridge

Peter Wright 6-1 Dennis Priestley

Ronnie Baxter 6-1 Kevin Painter

John Part 6-5 Colin Osborne

Losers £400


Phil Taylor 6-4 Alan Tabern

Gary Anderson 6-4 James Wade

Peter Wright 6-3 Co Stompe

Ronnie Baxter 6-3 John Part

Losers £800


Phil Taylor 6-2 Gary Anderson

Ronnie Baxter 6-2 Peter Wright

Losers £1,500


Ronnie Baxter 6-2 Phil Taylor

Winner £6,000

Runner-Up £3,000

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