SUPER BARNEY REGAINS WINNING FEELING
RAYMOND VAN BARNEVELD won his first Players Championship for over three years with a 6-2 defeat of John Part in the final of Saturday^s tournament at the Moorways Centre in Derby.
The Dutch ace claimed the £6,000 title and his first ranking win since April 2008 in the Open Holland Masters with the success, which saw him make a winning return from a summer break in Spain.
Van Barneveld was pushed all the way to an 11th leg in three of his matches, but punishing Jamie Caven for misses in their second round contest, took out 106 to defeat Co Stompe and then edged out Steve Farmer in the quarter-finals.
He also defeated Adrian Bolitho and Brendan Dolan during the event, and a 6-4 win over Paul Nicholson in the semi-finals set up a tasty final against three-time World Champion Part.
Van Barneveld broke in the opening leg of the final and, after Part had levelled, took out a 13-darter to win the third and a brilliant 126 finish on the bull for the fourth - despite the Canadian hitting two 180s in the leg.
Part hit double 16 to take the fifth, but van Barneveld restored his two-leg advantage with a 12-darter, traded 180s with his opponent before landing a key double four to lead 5-2 and then sealed victory in style with a 156 finish.
Part was seeking to win a Players Championship for a second successive weekend - and his fourth event of the year - but had to settle for the £3,000 runner-up prize.
He had produced a moment of magic to win his semi-final against Simon Whitlock, taking out 126 on the bull for a 12-darter with the Australian sat on 45.
Part also overcame Gary Anderson 6-3 in the quarter-finals, and defeated Chris Thompson, Steve Brown - with a whitewash - and Michael Smith during the event.
Nicholson^s semi-final appearance was his best display since a victory in Barnsley in June, while Whitlock was defeated in the last four for the third time in the last five Players Championships.
Anderson^s run to the quarter-finals included a stunning whitewash win over Mark Dudbridge in the last 16, in which he used just 73 darts in picking up the 6-0 win with legs of 12, 11, 11, 13, 12 and 14 darts for a 123.5 average.
Farmer defeated in-form Wes Newton in the last 16 with a 6-5 triumph after the number one seed missed two match darts, while Mark Walsh came from 5-1 down to see off John Henderson in his run to the fourth round.
Sunday sees a second £35,000 Players Championship being held at the Moorways Centre in Derby, as players continue to battle for qualifying places in next month^s World Grand Prix in Dublin.
Players Championship 17 (Derby, Saturday)
Wes Newton (1) Bye
Nigel Birch 6-5 Dave Honey
Dennis Priestley (32) 6-1 Ryan Harrington
Matt Jackson 6-3 Mark Frost
Steve Farmer (16) Bye
Alex Roy 6-4 Joe Cullen
Andy Smith (17) Bye
Adam Smith-Neale 6-3 Andy Hutchings
Jamie Caven (8) Bye
Raymond van Barneveld 6-3 Adrian Bolitho
Peter Wright (25) 6-3 Mick Todd
Brendan Dolan 6-1 Kevin McDine
Vincent van der Voort (9) Bye
Dylan Duo 6-3 Paul Rowley
Co Stompe (24) 6-2 Andrew Hibbert
Andy Brown 6-4 Jason Crawley
Paul Nicholson (5) Bye
Simon Burt 6-5 Gary Mawson
Wayne Jones (28) 6-3 Barrie Bates
Scott Rand 6-4 David Coyne
Colin Lloyd (12) Bye
Terry Temple 6-5 Darrell Claydon
Colin Osborne (21) 6-1 Ian White
Darren Whittingham 6-5 Brian Woods
Ronnie Baxter (4) Bye
John O^Shea 6-4 Kevin Dowling
Peter Hudson 6-2 Andy Hamilton (29)
James Richardson 6-3 Steve Hine
Kevin Painter (13) Bye
Steve Evans 6-1 Andy Relf
Denis Ovens (20) 6-2 Wayne Atwood
Matt Padgett 6-1 Steven Pearson
Gary Anderson (2) Bye
Adam Hunt 6-1 Jon Archer
Tony Eccles (31) 6-0 John Walton
Roland Scholten 6-4 Steve Grubb
Alan Tabern (15) Bye
Robert Thornton 6-1 Martyn Turner
Reece Robinson 6-5 Mervyn King (18)
Mark Dudbridge 6-3 Nicky Bache
John Part (7) Bye
Chris Thompson 6-0 Paul Schofield
Steve Brown (26) 6-1 Matthew Edgar
Dyson Parody 6-1 Steve Maish
Mark Webster (10) Bye
Michael Mansell 6-3 Adrian Gray
Michael Smith 6-3 Dennis Smith (23)
Louis Blundell 6-5 Nick Fullwell
Mark Walsh (6) Bye
Matt Clark 6-3 Andy Pearson
Mark Hylton (27) 6-2 Dave Smith
John Henderson 6-2 Magnus Caris
Justin Pipe (11) Bye
Ian Jopling 6-5 Mark Jones
Chris Aubrey 6-2 Richie Burnett (22)
Shaun Griffiths 6-3 Andy Jenkins
Simon Whitlock (3) Bye
Nigel Heydon 6-1 Darren Johnson
Kirk Shepherd 6-2 Dave Chisnall (30)
Michael Barnard 6-1 Geoff Whitworth
Terry Jenkins (14) Bye
Michael van Gerwen 6-2 Stephen Hardy
Steve Beaton (19) 6-2 William O^Connor
Gary Welding 6-2 Mareno Michels
Wes Newton 6-3 Nigel Birch
Dennis Priestley 6-2 Matt Jackson
Steve Farmer 6-2 Alex Roy
Andy Smith 6-1 Adam Smith-Neale
Raymond van Barneveld 6-5 Jamie Caven
Brendan Dolan 6-5 Peter Wright
Vincent van der Voort 6-2 Dylan Duo
Co Stompe 6-5 Andy Brown
Paul Nicholson 6-1 Simon Burt
Wayne Jones 6-5 Scott Rand
Terry Temple 6-5 Colin Lloyd
Colin Osborne 6-3 Darren Whittingham
Ronnie Baxter 6-2 John O^Shea
James Richardson 6-2 Peter Hudson
Kevin Painter 6-2 Steve Evans
Denis Ovens 6-1 Matt Padgett
Gary Anderson 6-4 Adam Hunt
Roland Scholten 6-0 Tony Eccles
Alan Tabern 6-4 Robert Thornton
Mark Dudbridge 6-3 Reece Robinson
John Part 6-3 Chris Thompson
Steve Brown 6-3 Dyson Parody
Michael Mansell 6-3 Mark Webster
Michael Smith 6-2 Louis Blundell
Mark Walsh 6-3 Matt Clark
John Henderson 6-1 Mark Hylton
Justin Pipe 6-3 Ian Jopling
Shaun Griffiths 6-4 Chris Aubrey
Simon Whitlock 6-3 Nigel Heydon
Kirk Shepherd 6-5 Michael Barnard
Terry Jenkins 6-2 Michael van Gerwen
Steve Beaton 6-2 Gary Welding
Wes Newton 6-5 Dennis Priestley
Steve Farmer 6-5 Andy Smith
Raymond van Barneveld 6-2 Brendan Dolan
Co Stompe 6-3 Vincent van der Voort
Paul Nicholson 6-4 Wayne Jones
Colin Osborne 6-5 Terry Temple
James Richardson 6-5 Ronnie Baxter
Kevin Painter 6-4 Denis Ovens
Gary Anderson 6-1 Roland Scholten
Mark Dudbridge 6-4 Alan Tabern
John Part 6-0 Steve Brown
Michael Smith 6-2 Michael Mansell
Mark Walsh 6-5 John Henderson
Justin Pipe 6-3 Shaun Griffiths
Simon Whitlock 6-0 Kirk Shepherd
Steve Beaton 6-4 Terry Jenkins
Steve Farmer 6-5 Wes Newton
Raymond van Barneveld 6-5 Co Stompe
Paul Nicholson 6-5 Colin Osborne
Kevin Painter 6-3 James Richardson
Gary Anderson 6-0 Mark Dudbridge
John Part 6-2 Michael Smith
Justin Pipe 6-1 Mark Walsh
Simon Whitlock 6-3 Steve Beaton
Raymond van Barneveld 6-5 Steve Farmer
Paul Nicholson 6-3 Kevin Painter
John Part 6-3 Gary Anderson
Simon Whitlock 6-1 Justin Pipe
Raymond van Barneveld 6-4 Paul Nicholson
John Part 6-5 Simon Whitlock
Raymond van Barneveld 6-2 John Part
Final - Leg-by-leg
Raymond van Barneveld v John Part
0-0 - John Part wins the bull and will throw first
1-0 - van Barneveld breaks on double ten, with Part missing the bull for a 130 finish.
1-1 - van Barneveld hits scores of 125 and 140 to be first to a finish, but misses four darts for the leg to allow Part back in, as the Canadian is let off for a miss at double 16 for a 109 finish on his previous visit by hitting the bed at the second time of asking.
2-1 - van Barneveld lands a 180 to be first to a finish, but misses the bull for a 12-darter and returns after Part also misses the middle target to win the leg on double 16 for a 13-dart finish.
3-1 - Part opens with a 180 and follows with scores of 100 and 180 - but fails to get a dart at the 41 finish as van Barneveld follows three ton-plus scores by finishing 126 on the bull for a 12-darter.
3-2 - The pair trade three tons apiece to open the fifth leg, but Part is first to a double, initially missing double 16 for a 104 finish but returning to hit the bed at the next time of asking.
4-2 - van Barneveld restores his two-leg lead with a sparkling 12-darter, hitting scores of 140, 137, 140 and an 84 finish on double 12.
5-2 - van Barneveld hits a 180 to take control against the throw, and although Part replies with a maximum to leave 106 the Dutchman was already on a finish and took out double four with his third dart to move a leg away from victory.
6-2 - van Barneveld secures the win in style with a brilliant 12-darter which he seals with a 156 checkout.
MIGHTY MIKE^S PDC UNICORN YOUTH TOUR TREBLE
MICHAEL VAN GERWEN won his third PDC Unicorn Youth Tour title at the Moorways Centre, defeating Michael Smith 4-1 in the final.
The Dutch ace followed up victories in Wigan and Crawley earlier this year by taking the £600 first prize in Derby, courtesy of a brilliant showing in Event 11.
He whitewashed fellow countryman Jimmy Hendricks as well as Wales^ Marc Evans in the early stages, and dropped only one leg against Leon Bailey and Ricky Evans in reaching the semis.
There, he overcame fellow countryman Rick Veugelers 4-1 and produced the same scoreline to win the final in style.
After Smith missed the bull for a 170 finish in the opening leg, van Gerwen took out double 16 to lead before opening the second with a 177.
Smith hit two 180s in reply, but the Dutchman denied him a dart at double 13 by finishing tops for an 11-dart leg to double his advantage.
The pair traded maximums in the fourth leg, which Smith won with a 90 finish, but tops gave van Gerwen a 3-1 lead before he repeated the double to secure victory.
Smith^s display included victories over Welsh youngster Jamie Lewis, Holland^s Mike Zuidwijk and former Youth Tour winner Paul Barham as well as whitewashes of Sam Davidson and Darren Whittingham.
The St Helens ace picked up £400 as runner-up, as he lost in the final for the second time this year after being in the decider in Event Two back in February, when he had also hit a nine-darter.
Lewis celebrated his third appearance on the Youth Tour by reaching the last four, where he was joined by Dutch youngster Veugelers - who had overcome compatriot Dirk van Duijvenbode in the last eight.
The next PDC Unicorn Youth Tour event will be held in Nuland on Saturday September 24, with entry available via the PDC Head Office on 08712 501 180 or via www.pdc-europe.net for non-UK & Ireland players.
PDC Unicorn Youth Tour Event 11
Steven Kirby 3-2 Brandonn Monk
Ryan Harrington 3-1 Bryan Flew
Adam Smith-Neale 3-2 Aden Kirk
Jamie Green 3-0 Joe Thompson
Rick Veugelers 3-1 Daniel Cooper
Reece Robinson 3-1 Daniel King-Morris
Scott Taylor 3-2 Joe Davis
Graeme Hoggarth 3-0 Robert Raine
Jimmy Hendricks 3-0 Conner Durham
Michael van Gerwen 3-0 Peter Browning
Marc Evans 3-0 Jamie Grinhaff
Adam Hunt 3-1 James Hayer
Greg Falcus 3-0 Kieran Dodd
Jack Tweddell 3-0 Ryan Iceton
Shaun Griffiths 3-1 Anthony West
Dan Dean 3-0 Daniel Firth
James Smith Bye (Jack Barwick timed out)
Sam Davidson 3-2 Sam Hamilton
Simon Hicks 3-0 Jack Hill
Darren Whittingham 3-2 Gareth Thomas
Mike Zuidwijk 3-1 John De Kruijf
Lee Whitworth 3-2 Curtis Hammond
Ryan Hoggarth 3-0 Kirsty Haw
Joe Cullen 3-0 Josh McCarthy
Dirk van Duijvenbode 3-1 Steven Kirby
Co Stompe Jnr 3-1 Aaron Holdstock
Adam Smith-Neale 3-0 Ryan Harrington
Jake Jones 3-2 Curtis Bagley
Scott Pearson 3-2 Jamie Green
Liam Lewis 3-1 Christian Pimblett
Rick Veugelers 3-1 Kristen Bircher
Ricky Evans 3-0 Luke Humphries
Reece Robinson 3-1 Scott Taylor
Matthew Dicken 3-0 Chris Aubrey
Steve Haggerty 3-0 Graeme Hoggarth
Leon Bailey 3-1 James Young
Michael van Gerwen 3-0 Jimmy Hendricks
David Everley 3-2 Dan Read
Marc Evans 3-0 David Galaska
David Coyne 3-1 Patrick Meaney
Adam Hunt 3-0 Greg Falcus
Wouter Vaes 3-1 Ryan De Vreede
Jack Tweddell 3-1 Kacey Jones
Jamie Landon 3-0 John Bryan
Lewis Venes 3-1 Shaun Griffiths
Jamie Lewis 3-0 Matthew Dennant
James Smith 3-2 Dan Dean
Paul Barham 3-0 Alex Nunez
Michael Smith 3-0 Sam Davidson
Ryan Herrington 3-1 Jeffrey De Zwaan
Darren Whittingham 3-1 Simon Hicks
Sam Hill 3-0 Dean Reynolds
Mike Zuidwijk 3-2 Tim Vandenhoek
Matt Gallett 3-0 Jelle Muller
Lee Whitworth 3-0 Ryan Hoggarth
Dirk van Duijvenbode 3-1 Joe Cullen
Co Stompe Jnr 3-2 Adam Smith-Neale
Scott Pearson 3-2 Jake Jones
Rick Veugelers 3-1 Liam Lewis
Ricky Evans 3-1 Reece Robinson
Matthew Dicken 3-2 Steve Haggerty
Michael van Gerwen 3-1 Leon Bailey
Marc Evans 3-2 David Everley
David Coyne 3-1 Adam Hunt
Jack Tweddell 3-1 Wouter Vaes
Lewis Venes 3-1 Jamie Landon
Jamie Lewis 3-0 James Smith
Michael Smith 3-1 Paul Barham
Darren Whittingham 3-0 Ryan Herrington
Mike Zuidwijk 3-1 Sam Hill
Matt Gallett 3-1 Lee Whitworth
Dirk van Duijvenbode 3-0 Co Stompe Jnr
Rick Veugelers 3-0 Scott Pearson
Ricky Evans 3-0 Matthew Dicken
Michael van Gerwen 3-0 Marc Evans
Jack Tweddell 3-0 David Coyne
Jamie Lewis 3-1 Lewis Venes
Michael Smith 3-0 Darren Whittingham
Mike Zuidwijk 3-2 Matt Gallett
Rick Veugelers 3-2 Dirk van Duijvenbode
Michael van Gerwen 3-1 Ricky Evans
Jamie Lewis 3-0 Jack Tweddell
Michael Smith 3-1 Mike Zuidwijk
Michael van Gerwen 4-1 Rick Veugelers
Michael Smith 4-3 Jamie Lewis
Michael van Gerwen 4-1 Michael Smith