WADE & BARNEY TO CLASH IN DUSSELDORF QUARTER-FINALS AS HUBBARD WINS BLACKPOOL SPOT
JAMES WADE & Raymond van Barneveld set up a tantalising quarter-final clash at the European Darts Open with wins in Sunday afternoon^s third round, as James Hubbard won a Betfair World Matchplay place with his victory over Mark Walsh.
Wade progressed to the last eight of the £82,100 European Tour event in Dusseldorf with a strong display to defeat Andy Smith 6-2 in the third round.
The left-hander, who sealed victory with a 120 finish, now plays van Barneveld after the five-time World Champion defeated fellow Dutchman Gino Vos by the same scoreline, taking out 156 and averaging almost 104 in a strong performance.
"I^m looking forward to playing James - we always have cracking matches," said van Barneveld. "To average nearly 104 was fantastic for me,
"Gino is a very talented player. He^s done very well in this event and was awesome in the first three or four legs, but I stayed calm."
Popular Australian star Simon Whitlock delighted the German crowd with a 6-3 win over Speedy Services UK Open champion Robert Thornton, setting up another tasty quarter-final against Dave Chisnall.
Chisnall, the German Darts Championship runner-up in Berlin a fortnight ago, defeated Mark Dudbridge 6-2 to win through to the last eight, averaging 100 and hitting five 180s in a strong display.
Colin Osborne also impressed, averaging 101.68 in a whitewash of Swindon^s Johnny Haines to claim his second 6-0 victory of the tournament, and he now plays Mervyn King in the opening quarter-final in Dusseldorf after securing his own Betfair World Matchplay place.
King edged past Steve Beaton 6-5 in a deciding leg, although later results meant that Beaton retains his qualifying place for the World Matchplay.
Joe Cullen also held on to his place amongst the 16 qualifiers from the ProTour Order of Merit, but Peter Wright will miss out on a Blackpool place following Hubbard^s 6-2 win over Mark Walsh.
The PDC Unicorn World Youth Champion - who only turned professional this year - continued his impressive emergence with a strong display to see off Walsh, and broke down in tears after taking out 110 to seal a significant victory.
Hubbard still has the £15,000 first prize in the European Darts Open in his sights first, and will meet Richie Burnett in the last eight, after the Welshman completed a 6-2 win over Michael van Gerwen with a 156 finish.
The tournament will play to a conclusion on Sunday evening, with the quarter-finals, semi-finals and final at the Maritim Hotel in Dusseldorf.
European Darts Open
European Tour Event Three
Mervyn King 6-5 Steve Beaton
Colin Osborne 6-0 Johnny Haines
Simon Whitlock 6-3 Robert Thornton
Dave Chisnall 6-2 Mark Dudbridge
James Wade 6-2 Andy Smith
Raymond van Barneveld 6-2 Gino Vos
James Hubbard 6-3 Mark Walsh
Richie Burnett 6-2 Michael van Gerwen
Evening Session (7pm-11pm)
Mervyn King v Colin Osborne
Simon Whitlock v Dave Chisnall
James Wade v Raymond van Barneveld
James Hubbard v Richie Burnett
King/Osborne v Whitlock/Chisnall
Wade/van Barneveld v Hubbard/Burnett
All games are the best of 11 legs
Steve Beaton v Mervyn King
0-0 - Mervyn King wins the bull and will throw first.
0-1 - King hits a 180 with his second visit to the oche, and is given a let-off for a miss at double 15 when Beaton misses double ten and five to break, allowing him back to finish double three.
1-1 - Beaton hits scores of 134, 137 and 140 but misses six darts at double 16 and eight - only for King to miss three chances to break and allow him back to finish double two.
1-2 - Beaton misses a further four darts at double 16, and King steps in to hit the same bed and avert a potential break.
1-3 - King takes the game^s first break of throw by posting double 16.
2-3 - King misses two darts at double 12 to finish 78, and Beaton takes out 96 on double 18 to break back.
3-3 - Beaton misses double 16, but King is unable to finish 160 and he returns to hit double eight to level.
4-3 - King misses three darts to take the leg, but Beaton is again off-target with three darts of his own at double 16 and eight - only for three misses at double four from King to let him back in on double eight to break and lead for the first time.
4-4 - King hits back by taking out 121 on the bull for the game^s best leg, a 12-darter.
4-5 - King misses two darts at double 18, but Beaton is off-target on tops for a 103 finish to allow him back in to win the leg and move to the brink of a quarter-final place.
5-5 - Beaton scores 150 to leave 32, but misses darts at double 16, eight and four to force a decider, but King is unable to finish 100 and he returns to take out double four.
5-6 - The tension shows in both players, with Beaton unable to finish 112 to allow King back in to take victory on tops.
Mervyn King: "I had two nine-darters in practice today but it didn^t quite happen on stage, so I^ve a little bit to work on and I want to improve in the next game."
Johnny Haines v Colin Osborne
0-0 - Johnny Haines wins the bull and will throw first.
0-1 - Haines misses three darts at tops and Osborne breaks with a 14-darter.
0-2 - Both players miss a dart at tops, with Osborne returning to land double ten with his third dart at the bed.
0-3 - Osborne kicks off the leg with 140 and 180, and when Haines misses a dart at tops he steps in to hit the same bed and break for a second time.
0-4 - Haines hits a 180 and 140 to leave 50 after 12 darts, but Osborne finishes 101 on double 12 to win a fourth successive leg.
0-5 - Osborne takes out 108 on double 16 to move a leg away from the win as he maintains an average of just under 100 - playing like a man inspired by the challenge of winning a Betfair World Matchplay place.
0-6 - Haines hits his second 180 of the game to kick off the leg, but Osborne replies in kind before hitting double seven for a 14-darter to seal a whitewash win.
The victory also means that Osborne will qualify for the Betfair World Matchplay.
Colin Osborne: "I played very well there. I knew I was in for a battle because Johnny^s a very good player, so I^m delighted to have won so well. I^ll be ready to play Mervyn tonight and am looking forward to it."
Simon Whitlock v Robert Thornton
0-0 - Simon Whitlock wins the bull and will throw first.
0-1 - Thornton makes a brilliant start to break with an 11-darter, hitting 140, 180, 145 and double 18.
1-1 - Whitlock misses the bull for a 170 finish but returns to land double four to break back.
2-1 - Whitlock makes the early running and has enough cushion to miss doubles on two visits before posting double one to lead.
3-1 - Thornton misses double five to finish 130 and three further darts at the bed, allowing Whitlock back to land double eight to break.
4-1 - Whitlock hits a 180 to leave 88, and takes out the finish in two darts to move three legs clear.
4-2 - Whitlock opens with 140 and 180 but misses four darts at double seven, and Thornton makes him pay by landing double ten.
4-3 - Thornton opens with a 180 and finishes tops for a 13-darter to break.
5-3 - Double 12 from Whitlock sees him break and move a leg away from the win with a 13-darter
6-3 - Thornton hits a 180 but it comes in vain as Whitlock posts double 18 for the win.
Simon Whitlock: "Robert^s a fantastic player and that was a great game, and it^s brilliant to be in the quarter-finals now."
Mark Dudbridge v Dave Chisnall
0-0 - Dave Chisnall wins the bull and will throw first.
0-1 - Chisnall kicks off the game with a 180 and wins the opening leg in 15 darts on tops.
0-2 - Chisnall hits a 180 to leave 50 and finishes double 18 for a 14-darter to break.
1-2 - Dudbridge finishes 110 to break and get on the scoreboard.
1-3 - Chisnall scores 174 to leave 16, and steps in when Dudbridge misses tops for a 105 finish to land double eight to break back.
1-4 - Chisnall opens with a 180 and lands tops to win his fourth leg.
2-4 - Chisnall starts a third leg of the game with a maximum, and scores 134 and 140, but misses double 18 and double nine to allow Dudbridge in to hit tops.
2-5 - Chisnall misses the bull for a 170 checkout and is also off-target on double eight and four - but Dudbridge fails to set up a double needing 71 and allow him back to hit double four with his third dart.
2-6 - Chisnall again opens with a 180, his fifth maximum of the game, and seals victory on double 16 for a 13-darter.
The result means that Dudbridge^s hopes of claiming a Betfair World Matchplay place have ended, with Steve Beaton now assured of a place in Blackpool.
Dave Chisnall: "I^ll take one game at a time and it will be hard tonight, but I am looking forward to playing Simon. I^ve got a good record against him but that will mean nothing tonight."
James Wade v Andy Smith
0-0 - Andy Smith wins the bull and will throw first.
1-0 - Wade secures an immediate break of throw by hitting tops.
2-0 - Wade pins double 12 for a 13-darter to double his lead.
3-0 - Smith misses three darts to get off the mark and Wade finishes double 15 to win a third successive leg.
3-1 - Wade misses double 14 to finish 148, and Smith lands double eight to get off the mark.
4-1 - Smith opens with a 177, but Wade fires in a 180 to leave 61 and finishes double 18 to break back.
5-1 - Wade finishes 70 on tops to move a leg away from the win.
5-2 - Wade misses six darts for the match, and Smith takes his chance to keep the game alive on double nine.
6-2 - Smith lands a 180, but Wade takes out 120 to secure his place in the quarter-finals.
James Wade: "Andy^s a very difficult player to beat so I^m happy to have won that. I^ve been practising hard for the last couple of weeks and I^m trying hard to take that up onto stage."
Raymond van Barneveld v Gino Vos
0-0 - Gino Vos wins the bull and will throw first
0-1 - Double top sees the young Dutchman take the opening leg.
1-1 - Vos hits back-to-back 180s but misses the bull to take out 86, and van Barneveld returns to land double 12 for a 13-darter.
1-2 - Vos lands three successive 140s, but misses darts at double 16, eight and four before returning to land double two and edge back ahead.
2-2 - van Barneveld scores 140, 140 and 130, and hits double ten for another 13-darter.
3-2 - van Barneveld opens with a 180 and breaks with double 16 for a 13-dart finish.
4-2 - The five-time World Champion again opens with a maximum, and finishes 156 for a brilliant 12-darter - pushing his average up to almost 109.
5-2 - van Barneveld misses double 12 and six to take out 78, but Vos fails to take advantage on double 12 himself to allow his opponent back on double three.
6-2 - Vos hits his third 180 of the game, but misses the bull to take out 108 and van Barneveld seals the win by finishing 76 in two darts.
The result ends Gino Vos^ hopes of winning a Betfair World Matchplay place, assuring Joe Cullen of a spot in Blackpool.
Raymond van Barneveld: "It^s special for me to play Gino. I practiced with him last year and he is a very talented player. He^s done very well in this event and was awesome in the first three or four legs, but I stayed calm and to average nearly 104 is fantastic for me. I^m looking forward to playing James - we always have cracking matches."
James Hubbard v Mark Walsh
0-0 - James Hubbard wins the bull and will throw first.
1-0 - Hubbard opens with 140 and 180 and he takes out 76 for a 12-darter.
1-1 - Walsh finishes 105 on tops to level the game.
2-1 - Walsh misses two darts at tops, and Hubbard hits the same bed to take the third leg.
2-2 - Hubbard misses tops for a 117 finish and three further darts to break throw, allowing Walsh back from four misses of his own to finish double five.
3-2 - Hubbard opens with a 180 and finishes double four for a 13-dart leg.
3-3 - Walsh kicks off the leg with his secnod maximum of the game, and Hubbard replies with one of his own only to miss the bull for a 130 finish and two further darts at tops to break, with double five again getting Walsh out of trouble.
4-3 - Hubbard begins the leg with a 174 score and finishes tops at the third time of asking to edge back ahead.
5-3 - Walsh misses the bull for a 170 checkout, and then misses five further darts for the leg, and Hubbard finishes 88 to break for the first time - moving to the brink of a victory which would see him qualify for the Betfair World Matchplay.
6-3 - Hubbard leaves 110 after 12 darts, and takes out the finish on tops to claim the win!
James Hubbard qualifies for the Betfair World Matchplay, at the expense of Peter Wright, and sheds tears of joy on stage as he celebrates an incredible moment in his young career.
Richie Burnett v Michael van Gerwen
0-0 - Michael van Gerwen wins the bull and will throw first.
0-1 - van Gerwen misses double 16 for a 142 finish but returns to hit double eight and draw first blood.
1-1 - Burnett lands a 180 but misses double 16, eight and four, with van Gerwen missing double 14 for a 108 finish to allow him back to land double two.
1-2 - Double eight sees van Gerwen regain the lead.
2-2 - Burnett finishes 80 for a 14-darter to level.
3-2 - Burnett fires in a 180 and breaks throw by finishing 61 on double 18 for another 14-dart leg
4-2 - Burnett takes out double ten to move two legs clear.
5-2 - The Welshman continues to impress as he hits tops to move to the brink of victory.
6-2 - Burnett caps a superb display by taking out 156 for the match.
Richie Burnett: "Michael^s a class act and I was nervous going into the game, but it^s great to win. Hopefully I can keep hitting the doubles like I am and I might have a good run tonight."