Premier League Darts: Dublin Draw Not Enough to Save Whitlock
Simon Whitlock sealed a draw against Wes Newton in Dublin, where his hopes of Premier League survival ended on Thursday evening.
Whitlock cannot escape elimination in Cardiff next week even if he defeats Michael van Gerwen.
‘The Wizard’, who lost his first four matches while struggling to shake off a bout of illness, took a point for the second week running but it wasn’t enough to keep his campaign alive.
"I am very disappointed to have been relegated but I’ll regroup and come back stronger,” said the world number four.
"It’s not a nice feeling and I never recovered from a slow start. My form has picked up again over the last three or four weeks but I’d left myself with too much to do.
"I’ll give it my all next week and try and bow out with a win.”
Whitlock broke his opponent’s throw immediately by cleaning up 80 with Newton waiting on a double.
The pair exchanged 180s in the second leg, which saw Newton level up with an eleven-darter.
‘The Wizard’ fired in his second maximum but couldn’t prevent Newton holding his throw as ‘The Warrior’ took the lead for the first time.
Whitlock hit back by bedding double two but Newton edged back ahead before the Australian’s third 180 helped him make it three legs apiece.
Newton pinned tops to move in front once more but a fourth and fifth maximum came in leg eight for Whitlock as he squared up proceedings again.
‘The Warrior’ held again, leaving Whitlock in need of three straight legs for victory.
He set about his task well with a clinical 65 checkout but Newton killed his hopes by taking out 64.
Whitlock held his nerve to earn a draw by pinning double eight after his opponent had missed a dart for the match.