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Article: Magical Taylor Rules Europe

Magical Taylor Rules Europe

PHIL TAYLOR claimed the European Championship title with an 11-5 win over Adrian Lewis last night.

Taylor produced a majestic weekend of darts in Frankfurt, recording two of the top three highest ever televised averages at over 113 in reaching the final.

He then came from 2-0 down to see off former protégé Lewis in the final and claim the £50,000 title, surging clear by winning seven out of eight legs in mid-game.

"It^s one of the hardest tournaments I^ve ever won and I^m very proud of it," said Taylor, who hit a record tournament average of 108.21.

"I love the feeling of winning and the competition.

"We^ve both worked very hard to get to the final. Adrian did brilliantly to get to the final and he^s in the Grand Slam of Darts now, and I^m proud of him.

"Towards the end both of us tired but I had to try keep the pressure on Adrian and it tolled in the end."

Lewis took the first leg of the game on double top and then broke Taylor^s throw to lead 2-0 with a 13-darter.

Two missed darts at double ten from Lewis in the next cost him a 3-0 lead as Taylor hit double ten to get off the mark.

He then landed 180s in the next three legs to hit the front, and took out 136 for a 4-2 cushion.

Lewis took the seventh leg in 14 darts, but there was little more he could do to halt Taylor^s charge, with the Stoke legend taking the next three legs to move clear at 7-3.

Double top gave Lewis a fourth leg and hope of a comeback, which was swiftly ended by another three-leg burst from Taylor, which included an 11-darter and a 102 finish as he moved to the brink of victory.

Double five kept Lewis in the contest after three missed match darts from Taylor, who began the next with a 174 score and landed double 16 for a 13-darter.

Big-hearted Taylor dedicated his win to quadriplegic twins Gregor and Florian Keller, who had defeated him earlier in the week using blow-pipe darts and were presented with his trophy after the final.

Lewis^ run to the final earned him £25,000 and also a place in the forthcoming Grand Slam of Darts.

"Phil did a job on me and he fully deserved the win," said Lewis. "I missed some doubles and if I^d gone 3-0 up it might have been a different game.

"Reaching the final was a bit tiring but I really enjoyed the tournament and it^s a great achievement when you look at all the players who were in the event."

Lewis had produced arguably his finest ever display on the televised stage in averaging 108.62 to defeat world number two Raymond van Barneveld 9-2 in the quarter-finals, and defeated Peter Manley 11-7 in the semis.

Taylor followed up a 113.92 average he hit against Mervyn King on Saturday with a 113.33 average in his 11-7 semi-final win over Robert Thornton, performances which were two of the top four in televised history and bettered only by his own 114.52 against Wes Newton in the Blue Square UK Open in May and Darryl Fitton^s 113.91 in the 2007 International Darts League.

He also saw off Mark Walsh in the quarter-finals, winning six of eight legs to pull away from three-all to take victory.

Thornton continued his rapid ascent up the world rankings with a run to his first major semi-final since changing to the PDC circuit in May, overcoming Ronnie Baxter in the quarters and averaging 103 against Taylor in a game where he shared the lead at seven-all.

"I pushed the master and I^m very proud of that," said Thornton. "Phil raises the bar for us all and we have to live with that, but I^m doing my best to get there."

Manley also lifted himself back up to 12th in the PDC Order of Merit after reaching the semi-finals. European Championship

Quarter Finals

Robert Thornton 9-5 Ronnie Baxter

Phil Taylor 9-5 Mark Walsh

Adrian Lewis 9-2 Raymond van Barneveld

Peter Manley 9-4 Alan Tabern


Phil Taylor 11-7 Robert Thornton

Adrian Lewis 11-7 Peter Manley


Phil Taylor 11-5 Adrian Lewis



ROBERT THORNTON reached his first PDC major semi-final with a 9-5 defeat of Ronnie Baxter in the European Championship.

The Scottish star followed up wins over World Champion John Part and Austria^s Mensur Suljovic by producing another top-drawer display to see off Baxter.

Baxter took the game^s opening leg, but Thornton won the next three to take command of the contest, showing early accuracy on double top in two of the legs.

He landed a second maximum of the game in leg five, but Baxter cut the deficit to 3-2 with a classy 100 checkout of single 20 and two double tops.


won a scrappy sixth leg, and then landed six perfect darts in the next with back-to-back 180s, before taking the leg on double six.

He also opened the next with scores of 180 and 140 before punishing two missed doubles from Baxter to create a 6-2 cushion.

Baxter won the next two, including a second 100 finish of the game, before Thornton took a brace of his own to move to the brink of victory, missing the bullseye for a 170 finish in the latter which would have ensured at least a share of the high checkout prize.


missed double five for victory in leg 13 as Baxter took out double 18 to stay in the gane, but two missed doubles from the Blackpool man in the next gave the Scot his chance, taking out 62 on double top to move into the semis.

"It was a cracking game of darts," said Thornton. "It was fast and furious and really enjoyable to play in.

"I scored well but missed a few doubles but I^m delighted to be in the semi-finals."


PHIL TAYLOR continued his march towards the European Championship title with a 9-5 defeat of Mark Walsh.


followed up his majestic display in seeing off Mervyn King with a 113.9 average in the second round with another top-notch performance.

He started well to take leads of 2-0 and 3-1 before Walsh hit back to level, but Taylor found another gear to then reel off four successive legs.

Taylor took out 130 to win leg seven, and stepped in on double eight after Walsh crucially missed double top in the next, and finishes of double 16 and double eight gave him a 7-3 cushion.

Walsh stepped in to win two of the next three following missed doubles by Taylor, who was off-target once on the bullseye for a 164 finish which would have been the highest of the event so far.

However, he claimed victory with a 13-dart leg to set up a semi-final with Robert Thornton.

"Mark played really well and came back strongly after I went 2-0 up," said Taylor.

"He hit some good shots at the right time, but the missed double when I went 5-3 up was very important and I capitalised on that."


ADRIAN LEWIS produced arguably his finest televised display to power into the semi-finals of the European Championship with a 9-2 win over Raymond van Barneveld.

Lewis averaged 108.62 in a sensational clash, with van Barneveld hitting six maximums and averaging over 102 but unable to stop the Stoke star running away with victory.

Lewis made a brilliant start, taking out 127 for the first leg and then firing in a stunning ten-darter to lead 2-0.

He landed three ton-plus scores to open leg three, only for the Dutchman to match him blow-for-blow and step in on double five after three misses from Lewis.

Lewis took out 106 and 122 to win two of the next three, with van Barneveld landing double top to stay in touch at 4-2.

Double four extended Lewis^ advantage, and he then hit five maximums in three legs in pulling clear to 8-2 ahead, taking out 98 in two darts for an 11-darter along the way.

He then wrapped up the win in 14 darts with a neat 83 finish.

"Everyone who knows me knows what I can do on a dartboard and I^ve done it there," said Lewis. "I put Raymond under pressure from the start and kept it up.

"His form has been really good so I knew I had to bring my top game.

"If I play my best game nobody can beat me, but I^m not consistent enough. I^m still young and learning all the time, and hopefully improving."


PETER MANLEY came from 3-0 down to defeat Alan Tabern 9-4 to win through to the semi-finals of the European Championship.

Tabern made a brilliant start to the contest, winning opening leg after missed doubles from Manley and then taking the next two for a 3-0 lead.

Manley fired in a 14-darter to take the fourth, and then took the fifth leg before squaring the game with a crucial break of throw in leg six.

He stepped in after missed doubles from Tabern to win the next three before another 14-darter extended the lead to 7-3.

Double ten put him a leg away from the win, with Tabern taking the 12th leg in 14 darts with a second 180 of the match.

However, two misses at double 16 in the next gave Manley another chance, landing double top to seal his last four place.

The result also means Manley remains in contention, alongside semi-final opponent Lewis, to win a Grand Slam of Darts spot by reaching the final in Frankfurt.

With the other semi-final featuring Phil Taylor and Robert Thornton - who have already qualified for Wolverhampton - Tabern now qualifies for the tournament by virtue of finishing third in the ITV Wildcard Qualifier.



PHIL TAYLOR battled past Robert Thornton in an epic to reach the final of the European Championship.

The duo enjoyed a tremendous contest, with Taylor averaging 113 and Thornton 103 as they traded big scores and heavy finishes throughout.


led 4-1 early on before Thornton took four in a row to lead and also hold a 7-6 advantage before Taylor took five of his own to seal victory.


took the game^s first two legs to lead 2-0, opening the match with a 177 score, before Thornton landed a maximum and a 98 finish to get off the mark.

Finishes of 125 and 123 from Taylor put him 4-1 up, but misses in the next two allowed Thornton to cut the gap to one leg.

The Scot then landed two maximums in taking leg eight in 11 darts to level, and he then landed double top to move in front for the first time.

The next five legs went with throw in a high-quality burst, with Taylor landing legs of 12, 11 and 12 darts and Thornton taking out finishes of 121 and 100 for 12 and 15 dart legs.


, though, secured the crucial break in leg 15, taking out double five with his third dart as Thornton waited on a finish, with the world number one moving back into the lead at 8-7.

Double eight gave Taylor the next two legs, and he sealed the win with a third successive 14-darter on double 16.

"Robert put me under a lot of pressure but I didn^t panic," said Taylor. "I eventually broke him in that 15th leg and it was the turning point.

"I^m delighted to be in the final and hopefully I can claim the title now."


^s run earns him £12,500 and edges him further towards the world^s top 32 only six months after joining the PDC circuit.

"I pushed the master and I^m very proud of that," said Thornton. "I had to be resilient to come back from 4-1 but the 15th leg was crucial.

"Phil^s average was brilliant. He raises the bar and we have to live with that, but I^m doing my best to get there."


ADRIAN LEWIS reached his first televised final since 2006 with an 11-7 win over Peter Manley in the European Championship.

Nothing could separate the pair for much of the match, before Lewis produced a sprint finish to take four successive legs and book his place in the decider.

The win also gives Lewis a place in the Grand Slam of Darts in Wolverhampton later this month, and pushes him back into the world^s top six.

The youngster, who averaged 108.62 against Raymond van Barneveld in the quarter-finals, made a sluggish start to the semi-final, but a 180 set up a double ten finish as he took the lead.

A missed double eight allowed Manley in for the second leg, and the Carlisle man took the third on double top to lead 2-1.

The duo traded double top finishes in the next two legs, before Lewis took two in a row to lead 4-3.

He also led 5-4 before Manley took out 97 in two darts to break throw and then double ten to lead 6-5.

Double 16 saw Lewis level, and double top put him back in front, only for Manley to take leg 14 with a two-dart 98 finish to square the match.

But Lewis won the next against the draws with a fine 14-darter, and an 11-darter put him 9-7 up to put daylight between the duo.

Double top put him to the brink of victory, which was sealed on double four.

"It^s great to be back in a major final," said Lewis. "There was a lot of pressure on us both with the Grand Slam of Darts places up for grabs, and we both showed that a little.

"I was really pleased with my finishing, as I was against Raymond van Barneveld, but my scoring was patchy and it will have to be better in the final."

Manley admitted: "I went in front once or twice but struggled to hold my own throw.

"It wasn^t the best game but we were both playing for some massive rewards and the better man won - and Adrian has a great chance to show how good he can be now."


TERRY JENKINS defeated namesake Andy Jenkins to claim victory in the John McEvoy Gold Dart Classic Players Championship in Killarney.

The world number five picked up his first title for 18 months with a strong display at Ireland^s National Event Centre.

He lost just one set throughout the day, in his opening game against Arthur O^Brien, and saw off Stephen O^Connor, Brian Doheny, Steve Maish and Felix McBrearty to reach the semi-finals.

Jenkins then whitewashed Kirk Shepherd in the last four before repeating that scoreline against Portsmouth ace Andy Jenkins in the decider to claim the £5,000 cheque.

Andy Jenkins^ run was his best on the PDC Pro Tour since June 2005 and comes hot on the heels of his qualification for the European Championship a week ago.

Both players had travelled to Killarney following their exits in Frankfurt, along with first round victims Colin Lloyd and Jacko Barry, quarter-finalist Kevin Painter and ITV pundit Steve Beaton, who reached the last 16.

Kirk Shepherd enjoyed his best run of form since reaching the final of the World Darts Championship, while quarter-final appearances for Felix McBrearty, Jamie Caven and Matt Clark continued their good recent form.

Michael van Gerwen, who won Saturday^s Gleneagle Irish Masters, fell in a deciding leg to Painter at the last 16 stage after the pair missed a host of match darts in a tense finish.

John McEvoy Gold Dart Classic Players Championship

Preliminary Round

Radoslav Szaganski 3-0 Kevin McDonnell

Brian Doheny 3-1 Noel McCarthy

Peter Quinn 3-0 Jamie Shearer

Anthony Boyle 3-0 Michael Clampett

Aaron Loundes Bye (Jason O^Connor)

Ken Moran 3-1 Michael Byrne

Joe Byrne 3-1 Padraig Hester

Jimmy Murphy 3-2 Anto McCracken

Tommy Elmes 3-2 Philip Edwards Jnr

Anto Lynch 3-0 Bill Bailey

John-Paul Dowdall 3-0 Kieran McMund

Andy Reilly Bye (John Dempsey)

Mick Barry 3-0 Mark Howard

John Teahan 3-0 John-Paul Kinsella

William O^Carroll Bye (Jason McCann)

Pakie O^Donovan 3-0 John McEvoy

Graham Rooney 3-0 Adam McAuliffe

Dave Donachie 3-1 PJ Byrne

Lyndone Inchoco 3-1 Mark O^Donohoe

Andrew Dwyer 3-0 Ross O^Brien

Robert Moore 3-0 Barney Reddy

First Round

Terry Jenkins 3-1 Arthur O^Brien

Stephen O^Connor 3-0 Craig McCarthy

Sean Marshall 3-2 John Dunne

Brian Doheny 3-2 Radoslav Szaganski

Kevin McDine 3-0 Fred McSweeney

Steve McDonnell 3-0 Joe Collins

Steve Maish 3-0 Vidal Rugales

Peter Quinn 3-0 Phillip Bautista

Andy Smith 3-0 Peter Waters

TJ Dixon Bye (James Whelan)

James Keogh 3-1 Joseph Kelly

Anthony Boyle 3-2 Mick Egan

Adrian Gray Bye (Mick Dwyer)

Alan Ramsell 3-1 Steven Ring

Felix McBrearty 3-2 Jimmy Leahy

Damien O^Driscoll 3-0 Aaron Loundes

Kirk Shepherd 3-0 Kevin Foley

Noel Bowes 3-0 Jerry Coughlan

Andrew Davies 3-0 Derek Thornton

Joe Byrne 3-1 Ken Moran

Wes Newton 3-0 Leonard Fitzgerald

Mark Kinsella 3-0 John O^Sullivan

Brendan Dolan 3-0 Ian McCarthy

Jimmy Murphy 3-0 Brian Coleman

Mark Dudbridge 3-0 James Hogan

Ali Powell 3-0 James Byrne

Shane O^Connor 3-0 Shane O^Hara

Anto Lynch 3-0 Tommy Elmes

Mick McGowan 3-0 Declan O^Sullivan

Billy Matthews 3-0 Tommy Kelly

Jamie Caven 3-0 Mark Willis

Alan O^Reilly 3-1 John-Paul Dowdall

Garrett Gray 3-0 Colin Lloyd

Mike Begley Bye (Caesar Colocado)

John Jenkinson 3-2 Dave O^Leary

Mick Barry 3-1 Alan Reilly

Matt Clark 3-0 Noel Canning

Eugene McArdle 3-1 David Bradley

Colin Monk Bye (Gerry Egan)

John Teahan 3-0 Ian McNaney


Bates 3-0 David Kellaghan

Dave Murphy 3-2 Jim McKevitt

Sean Palfrey 3-0 Stiofian O^Dalaigh

John Hannon 3-0 William O^Carroll

Tony Eccles 3-0 Darrell Hodgson

Benny Grace 3-0 Tony McGregor

Dave Honey 3-0 Pat O^Flaherty

Pakie O^Donovan 3-1 Jim Craig

Andy Jenkins 3-0 Jerry Kelliher

James Morrisey 3-1 Brian Cullen

Robert Watson-Lang 3-2 Laurene Collins

Danny Brosnan 3-1 Graham Rooney

Steve Beaton 3-0 Eamon Carey

Mick Meaney Jnr 3-0 Billy McAuliffe

John MaGowan 3-0 Chris O^Neill

Connie Finnan 3-1 Dave Donachie

Kevin Painter 3-0 David Sheerin

Brian Murphy 3-0 Steven Coyne

Jason Cullen 3-1 James Murphy

Andrew Dwyer 3-1 Lyndon Inchoco

Michael van Gerwen 3-0 Ted Foxe

Aodhagen O^Neill 3-1 David Buckley

John Burke 3-1 Jacko Barry

Robert Moore 3-0 Keith Breen

Second Round

Terry Jenkins 3-0 Stephen O^Connor

Brian Doheny 3-2Sean Marshall

Kevin McDine 3-0 Steve McDonnell

Steve Maish 3-0 Peter Quinn

Andy Smith 3-0 TJ Dixon

James Keogh 3-2 Anthony Boyle

Adrian Gray 3-0 Alan Ramsell

Felix McBrearty 3-0 Damien O^Driscoll

Kirk Shepherd 3-0 Noel Bowes

Joe Byrne 3-0 Andrew Davies

Wes Newton 3-0 Mark Kinsella

Brendan Dolan 3-0 Jimmy Murphy

Mark Dudbridge 3-0 Ali Powell

Shane O^Connor 3-0 Anto Lynch

Mick McGowan 3-2 Billy Matthews

Jamie Caven 3-1 Alan O^Reilly

Garrett Gray 3-0 Mike Begley

Mick Barry 3-0 John Jenkinson

Matt Clark 3-0 Eugene McArdle

Colin Monk 3-0 John Teahan


Bates 3-1 Dave Murphy

John Hannon 3-1 Sean Palfrey

Tony Eccles 3-1 Benny Grace

Dave Honey 3-0 Pakie O^Donnovan

Andy Jenkins 3-0 James Morrisey

Robert Watson-Lang 3-1 Danny Brosnan

Steve Beaton 3-0 Mick Meaney Jnr

John MaGowan 3-0 Connie Finnan

Kevin Painter 3-0 Brian Murphy

Andrew Dwyer 3-2 Jason Cullen

Michael van Gerwen 3-2 Aodhagen O^Neill

John Burke 3-1 Robert Moore

Losers £75

Third Round

Terry Jenkins 3-0 Brian Doheny

Steve Maish 3-2 Kevin McDine

James Keogh 3-2 Andy Smith

Felix McBrearty 3-1 Adrian Gray

Kirk Shepherd 3-0 Joe Byrne

Wes Newton 3-1 Brendan Dolan

Mark Dudbridge 3-0 Shane O^Connor

Jamie Caven 3-0 Mick McGowan

Garret Gray 3-2 Mick Barry

Matt Clark 3-2 Colin Monk


Bates 3-0 John Hannon

Tony Eccles 3-1 Dave Honey

Andy Jenkins 3-2 Robert Watson-Lang

Steve Beaton 3-0 John MaGowan

Kevin Painter 3-0 Andrew Dwyer

Michael van Gerwen 3-0 John Burke

Losers £150

Fourth Round

Terry Jenkins 3-0 Steve Maish

Felix McBrearty 3-1 James Keogh

Kirk Shepherd 3-2 Wes Newton

Jamie Caven 3-2 Mark Dudbridge

Matt Clark 3-1 Garrett Gray


Bates 3-2 Tony Eccles

Andy Jenkins 3-0 Steve Beaton

Kevin Painter 3-2 Michael van Gerwen

Losers £300


Terry Jenkins 3-0 Felix McBrearty

Kirk Shepherd 3-1 Jamie Caven


Bates 3-1 Matt Clark

Andy Jenkins 3-0 Kevin Painter

Losers £600


Terry Jenkins 3-0 Kirk Shepherd (2-0, 2-0, 2-0)

Andy Jenkins 3-2 Barrie Bates (1-2, 2-1, 1-2, 2-1, 2-1)

Losers £1,250


Terry Jenkins 3-0 Andy Jenkins (2-0, 2-0, 2-0)

Winner £5,000

Runner-Up £2,500



ootballer Neil Ruddock will partner Phil Taylor in the Pro-Celebrity Challenge on Friday November 14.

The Pro-Celebrity Challenge will see eight celebrities team up with eight of the top names in world darts at the Wolverhampton Civic Hall ahead of the start of the Grand Slam of Darts.

Ex-Liverpool and England defender Ruddock was drawn to team up with Taylor in the tournament, and they will face Women^s World Champion Anastasia Dobromyslova and six-time World Snooker Champion Steve Davis in the opening game.

"I can^t wait to play with Neil - but he^d better get practising as I^m a tough cookie!" said Taylor.

"Steve is a very good player and it^s all about whether he holds his nerve in that first match, but he^s as good at darts as he is at snooker!"

Former boxer Barry McGuigan teams up with the current PDC World Champion John Part, and they meet Wayne Mardle and actor Michael Le Vell, best known as Coronation Street^s Michael Le Vell.

"I can^t wait to play in the Pro-Celebrity Challenge," said Le Vell, nicknamed "The Spirit".

"I love watching darts and used to play regularly but I^m hoping for some practice advice from Phil Taylor before the event!

"I^ve played Phil Tuffnell before and beat him, so I am sure he will be looking for revenge if I get to play his team.

"I hear Neil Ruddock is pretty handy with the arrows , and I reckon Steve Davis will be keen to do well, so I am looking forward to hopefully taking them on in Wolverhampton."

BDO World Champion Mark Webster teams up with another top sportsman, England rugby union World Cup winner Mike Tindall.

"I am really looking forward to playing with the best players in the World," said Tindall.

"I love watching Darts on the TV when I can, especially when I am away with Gloucester with the other lads and I try and play when I can.

"I think playing in front of a few thousand people in the arena and millions of people watching on TV is going to be a brilliant experience, and I^m going to be trying my best to make sure I contribute to winning the event with James."

They will meet former England cricketer and "I^m A Celebrity...Get Me Out Of Here" winner Phil Tufnell and Raymond van Barneveld in the opening games.

Three-time Olympic javelin medallist Steve Backley links up with James Wade, while poker legend David "Devilfish" Ulliott partners Peter Manley. Pro-Celebrity Challenge Draw

Phil Taylor & Neil Ruddock v Anastasia Dobromyslova & Steve Davis

John Part & Barry McGuigan v Wayne Mardle & Michael Le Vell

Raymond van Barneveld & Phil Tufnell v Mark Webster & Mike Tindall

James Wade & Steve Backley v Peter Manley & David "Devilfish" Ulliott

* Tickets for the Pro-Celebrity Challenge on Friday November 14 and the Grand Slam of Darts from November 15-23 at the Wolverhampton Civic are still available on 0870 320 7000 or via

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