Premier League Darts round-up: Michael van Gerwen, Rob Cross, Barney & Mensur Suljovic all win in Leeds

Last Updated March 09 2018, 00:28Darts
Michael van Gerwen (Pic: Lawrence Lustig/PDC)
Michael van Gerwen (Pic: Lawrence Lustig/PDC)

Michael van Gerwen was let off the hook by Simon Whitlock while Rob Cross inflicted Michael Smith's first defeat of the season in Leeds.

Scroll down for results, updated standings and all the statistics

MVG rusty but still wins

Michael van Gerwen was let off the hook by Simon Whitlock as he edged the opening match of the night 7-4 in Leeds.

The reigning Premier League champion missed 16 doubles and only just nudged his average north of 100 as he came from behind to win by a scoreline which flattered him.

A 14-dart leg against the throw earned Whitlock an early lead and while 2-0 soon became 2-2, the Aussie later missed two darts to break at 4-4 and was punished by van Gerwen.

Whitlock missed seven darts at double in total but matched van Gerwen for much of the game, until missing another opportunity as he failed to force a decider when one dart at double 20 sailed high of its target.

Granted a final reprieve, van Gerwen stepped in to seal victory.

"It wasn't my best performance," van Gerwen confessed to Sky Sports. "I missed too many chances, my scoring wasn't great, but you need to show some character and that's exactly what I did.

"I want to go back (to higher averages). I can do a lot better than this. There's a lot of work to do."

Everybody loves Raymond

Raymond van Barneveld showed a touch of class to fight his way to a 7-5 victory over Gerwyn Price.

Having led early in the match, an out-of-sorts van Barneveld found himself 5-3 in arrears after a 12-dart leg from his opponent.

The game changed course in the very next leg, however, as a 121 finish on double 14 saw van Barneveld spring to life and he was soon level thanks to an 80 finish.

As the pressure began to tell on Price, van Barneveld took out 101 on double top and was now throwing for the match, eventually stepping up with 89 required to complete the comeback.

Fittingly, van Barneveld gobbled up the opportunity, hitting bullseye to turn a 5-3 deficit into a 7-5 victory.

Sensational Suljovic

Mensur Suljovic produced the performance of the night to destroy Peter Wright 7-1.

The Austrian averaged 103.01 and missed just five darts at double as he coasted to victory against an opponent who was a long way below his brilliant best.

Wright in fact won the first leg after Suljovic missed billseye for a 132 checkout, but it was one-way traffic from that point as Suljovic rattled off seven legs in succession - all in 14 or 15 darts.

He almost ended in fittingly glorious fashion as a dart at bull for a 161 finish missed its target, but by this point the match was over as a contest and he returned to hit double 14 with Wright again way back.

Anderson gets off Scot free

Gary Anderson stole a point as he drew 6-6 with Daryl Gurney.

Superchin looked on course for the upset when, from 3-1 down, he rattled off four legs in succession as Anderson proved increasingly wasteful at the oche.

A 12-dart leg from Anderson kept him interested, but a pair of missed darts for the next allowed Gurney to recapture his two-leg lead and, with that, guarantee himself at least a share of the spoils.

Gurney should have finished the job, however, as after an Anderson hold he missed two darts for the final leg, allowing Anderson to steal in with double 17 to break throw and snatch a draw.

"Very frustrating - I thought the double 12 was in, I thought the double six was in," said Gurney, referring to his two match darts.

"I am playing well. I'm giving myself opportunities. It's the way it goes sometimes."

Anderson expressed his frustration at his Premier League form, which wasn't of the standards he'd set in a weekend UK Open victory.

"I might try high heels next week!" joked the two-time world champion, ruing the fact that his darts at treble 20 too often came up short.

Hot Cross run

World champion Rob Cross came out best in a thrilling conclusion to the evening as he beat Michael Smith 7-5.

Cross trained 4-2 and 5-3, but rattled off four legs in a row to win and move into the top four.

In a match which saw the pair trade maximums - Cross nailing five to Smith's four - it was a stunning 121 finish which ultimately decided things as Cross found his best darts when he needed them.

The result was perhaps hard on Smith, who hit just five of his 16 darts at double. Cross had four fewer attempts and scored with seven of them.

Thursday's Premier League results, table & statistics

  • Michael van Gerwen 7-4 Simon Whitlock
  • Gerwyn Price 5-7 Raymond van Barneveld
  • Peter Wright 1-7 Mensur Suljovic
  • Gary Anderson 6-6 Daryl Gurney
  • Rob Cross 7-5 Michael Smith

2018 Premier League Darts Table

  1. MVG P 5 W 4 D 0 L 1 LegD +15 Pts 8
  2. Smith P 5 W 4 D 0 L 1 LegD +12 Pts 8
  3. Whitlock P 5 W 3 D 0 L 2 LegD +4 Pts 6
  4. Cross P 5 W 3 D 0 L 2 LegD -2 Pts 6
  5. Barney P 5 W 2 D 1 L 2 LegD -7 Pts 5
  6. Suljovic P 5 W 2 D 0 L 3 LegD +1 Pts 4
  7. Anderson P 5 W 1 D 2 L 2 LegD -2 Pts 4
  8. Wright P 5 W 1 D 2 L 2 LegD -7 Pts 4
  9. Gurney P 5 W 0 D 3 L 2 LegD -8 Pts 3
  10. Price P 5 W 0 D 2 L 3 LegD -10 Pts 2

CLICK HERE FOR PREMIER LEAGUE DATES, FIXTURES, RESULTS & TABLE

HIGHEST AVERAGES

Suljovic 103.01
MVG 100.17
Anderson 99.54
Cross 96.22
Gurney 94.62
Smith 92.61
Whitlock 92.28
Barney 91.65
Wright 91.54
Price 89.01

MOST 180s

Cross 5
Smith 4
Anderson 3
Whitlock 3
MVG 3
Gurney 2
Barney 2
Suljovic 1
Wright 1
Price 0

HIGHEST CHECKOUTS

Barney 121
Cross 121
MVG 110
Gurney 110
Price 87
Whitlock 77
Suljovic 76
Smith 72
Anderson 50
Wright 8

CHECKOUT PERCENTAGES

Cross 58.33%
Suljovic 53.85%
Barney 53.85%
Anderson 40%
Price 38.46%
Whitlock 36.36%
Smith 31.25%
MVG 30.43%
Gurney 28.57%
Wright 25%

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