MVG topples Lewis; Wade through

  • Last Updated: December 30 2012, 8:17 GMT

Michael van Gerwen dethroned reigning two-time champion Adrian Lewis to reach the semi-finals of the PDC World Darts Championship in one of the greatest matches ever played inside Alexandra Palace.

MVG topples Lewis; Wade through

Lewis, who had won his 15 previous matches at the venue, missed two darts for the match before going down 4-2 in the deciding set of an enthralling battle.

Both men averaged over 100, combined for 26 180s, but it was van Gerwen who sealed a semi-final date with James Wade after hitting one of the biggest double fours of his career.

Lewis, champion for the last two years, was left to rue two missed darts at double top in the deciding set, an opening which van Gerwen capitalised on with nerveless 83 and 108 checkouts before breaking throw to win.

'Jackpot' Lewis had earlier come from behind on four occasions to take the match into a deciding set.

The Stoke thrower used just 37 darts to win the eighth set, producing 15, 10 and 12-dart legs to blow van Gerwen away.

But the 23-year-old from Holland was not over-rawed and showed the kind of battling spirit which is required to win this event to reach the semi-finals for the first time.

Speaking afterwards, 'Mighty Mike', who recorded a doubles per centage of just 30, told Sky Sports: "We played a very good game. I was struggling all the way through on my doubles.

"He played so well, and I thought 'oh, here we go'. But he missed two darts at the double (to win) and I knew that was my chance.

"This is my biggest year ever. I'm playing so well at the moment and in games like this it's amazing if you can win. But I'm not finished yet. I'm in the semi-finals and I know if I can carry this game on I can get to the final."

A devastated Lewis admitted: "It's my own fault. I blocked the bed in the first place (going for victory), but fair play to him. He played really well.

"You've got to take it on the chin and move on now. He deserved to win in the end - I missed my chance, he took his."

At least the Stoke thrower could take some comfort that he had been part of something special on the biggest stage of the season, adding: "It was probably the best game you'll ever see on television. That was better than Taylor-van Barneveld, without a shadow of a doubt."

World number three Wade had earlier come through a thrilling clash with Wes Newton 5-4 to reach his third World Championship semi-final.

In a match which flowed one way and then the other, Wade eventually held his nerve to win and book a last four showdown with Van Gerwen.

For Newton it is the second time in three years he has been eliminated 5-4 at the quarter-final stage of the competition.

Speaking afterwards, Wade told Sky Sports: "I haven't played well but I'm still winning and that's the main thing. I've got to start playing real darts though. At the moment I'm making the most of the opportunities I'm being given."

Sixth-seed Newton flew out of the traps, winning the first two sets before Wade got on the board in the third.

However, the turning point in the match came in the fourth set when Newton missed four darts for a 3-1 lead, allowing Wade to fight back and level the match.

'The Machine' went on to win nine legs out of the next 10 to open up what appeared to be an unassailable 4-2 lead, only for Newton to rally and force a deciding set.

Both men traded 180s in a high-quality decider, but it was Wade, who lost to Lewis 6-5 in last year's semi-final, who held his nerve when it mattered to progress.


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