World Darts results: Fallon Sherrock wins again at Alexandra Palace to make more history

Fallon Sherrock salutes her adoring crowd
Fallon Sherrock salutes her adoring crowd

A review of Saturday's action at the William Hill World Darts Championship, where Fallon Sherrock won again to make more darting history.

EVENING SESSION

Queen Sherrock stuns Suljovic

Fallon Sherrock produced a performance of impossible brilliance to beat Mensur Suljovic 3-1 at a bouncing Alexandra Palace.

After a whirlwind few days following her history-making victory over Ted Evetts, Sherrock returned to the stage to ruthlessly defeat the Austrian, ranked 11th in the world.

From 2-0 down in the first set, Sherrock rattled off five legs in succession, and from 1-1 in sets and 2-0 down in the third she won six of the next eight legs to complete a victory which will be remembered for generations to come.

"I can't believe it!" said Sherrock, who had already made headlines worldwide with her defeat of Evetts earlier in the week, the first victory by a female player in the PDC World Championship.

"With everything that's been going on, I've just been focusing on my finishing. I kept saying 'if he gives me a shot, I've got to take it.'

"I'm still waiting for it all to sink in. Now it's definitely not going to sink in - I don't know how I'm going to sleep tonight!"

Asked about the impact her performances might have, Sherrock, who went 11/16 on doubles, replied: "I've proved that we can beat everyone.

"If that doesn't say that women can play darts, I don't know what can."

When Suljovic took the first two legs of the match, anyone would have been forgiven for thinking that this was a bridge too far for the 25-year-old, who had missed bullseye to steal the opener against the throw.

But then Sherrock rattled off a sequence of deadly darts, taking out 81, a brilliant 131 and then a nerveless 70 to stun Suljovic and take the set.

A 104 finish to start the second set followed, and Sherrock added another quickfire double, this time 64, to move within a leg of a two-set lead.

Suljovic, though, turned the game on its head with a 14-dart leg which was followed by successive 71 checkouts to level the match.

Now it was the Austrian's turn to move clear as he took the next two legs in 13 and 15 darts, the sort of consistent quality which looked sure to prove decisive, and yet in Sherrock he had met a player riding the crest of a wave.

First, she took out 56 to keep her hopes of taking the third set alive, then she threatened to write another page in this remarkable story with back-to-back 180s to begin the following leg.

The nine-dart attempt fell short, but Sherrock only needed 11 to force a deciding leg on her throw, one she nervelessly took on double 16 after Suljovic had missed three darts for it.

Before he could recover, Suljovic was dealt another blow as Sherrock took out 66 for a 15-dart leg to start the fourth set, but he responded well to hit tops and draw level, before a rare miss from Sherrock allowed him to move ahead at 2-1.

Then, Sherrock took out another killer finish, hitting double 16 for a 68 combination, before the show-stopper: an 86 finish, completed on the bullseye, a single dart which could inspire a generation and, here, sent a packed audience into meltdown.

Big Fish for Durrant

Glen Durrant bagged a 170 finish as he took apart Damon Heta to reach the third round of the PDC World Darts Championship.

The current BDO world champion seldom looked in any danger against an opponent who made headlines in his native Australia earlier this year, scoring heavily and taking his chances in a routine win.

Heta had one chance to make an impression, but he'd have needed to take out 160 to win the third set. Once he'd failed to do so, the match was as good as lost.

Durrant's performance, which earned him a clash with Daryl Gurney, was one which suggested he could be a real contender for this title.

Granted, an average of 95.36 was well short of the levels achieved by Ryan Searle earlier in the day, but Durrant knows this is a long tournament and it was a case of getting the job done with the minimum of fuss.

That's exactly what he did, hitting his first dart at double to break throw in the first leg, holding throw, and then capitalising when Heta failed to take out 11 with six darts at the end of the first set.

The end of the second set was far more spectacular, as Durrant hit the Big Fish checkout, at which point he'd won six of the seven legs and without really looking like having to find another gear.

Heta played better when his winning chance had all but gone, and throws of 140, 140 and 123 helped him to lead 2-1 in the third set. And yet he opened the following leg with a throw of just 45, allowing Durrant to reassert his authority and soon close out the match.

Gurn Notice

Durrant's task in the third round will be significantly tougher, or at least it ought to be, after Daryl Gurney beat Justin Pipe 3-0.

Pipe took out 104 to win the first leg of the match, but Gurney responded with a finish of 72 followed by a 13-dart leg, before Pipe's profligacy handed the Northern Irishman the opening set as he took out 68.

Another smart finish - this time 80 in three darts - put Gurney in command of the second set and he headed to double four once more to finish from 76, another dagger in the heart of an opponent who was waiting on 12.

Some heavy scoring saw Gurney close out the second set, and four missed darts at double to start the third set confirmed that Pipe had run his race.

Gurney capitalised, then threw a 14-dart leg having narrowly missed out on a 121 finish, before Pipe earned a brief stay of execution by forcing one more leg. Gurney took it, albeit scrappily, leaving the impression there was plenty left in the locker.

Daryl Gurney
Daryl Gurney

Dancing Dimitri dazzles

Dimitri Van den Bergh impressed to beat Josh Payne 3-0 in the final act of an exhilarating Saturday at Alexandra Palace.

The talented Belgian averaged 103.81, taking over from Ryan Searle with the highest figure of the tournament so far, as he raced into the third round.

Van den Bergh lost the first leg to a 94 checkout, before completing a 124 finish on the bullseye and eventually going on to edge his way into a 1-0 lead.

Legs of 13, 14 and 11 darts saw him race through the second set, taking it with a 100 finish, and there was another 11-dart leg from the youngster as he completed a whitewash win.

Payne was better than the scoreline, averaging almost 98 himself, but his dart at double 16 to save the match missed and his opponent was in no mood to keep the party going towards midnight.

AFTERNOON SESSION

Searle stars as Steve goes West

Ryan Searle produced the highest average of the tournament to date - albeit with a figure later topped by Van den Bergh - to dump Steve West out of the World Championship in a 3-0 thumping.

In a classic example of the nature of set play and the fine margins in professional sport, Searle - who clocked 101.54 - won the deciding leg of each set to beat an opponent who played to a standard which would have won most last-32 matches.

In this one, West found Searle too hot to handle when it mattered, and when at last he had a dart to get on the board with a set, it was too late, a missed bullseye proving his final contribution to an excellent match.

Searle was much the best in the key moments, throwing tops to win the first set and then taking out 79 on double 11 to win the second, this time under real pressure.

A 97 checkout got Searle off and running in the final set before West responded with tops for a 90 finish of his own, and the seeded player went higher still with a 120 finish to force yet another throw-down for the set.

And yet again, Searle stepped up, throwing his fifth maximum and eventually hitting double five to seal the match at the fourth attempt.

Ryan Searle was in excellent form to beat Steve West
Ryan Searle was in excellent form to beat Steve West

Lewis survives against Reyes

Adrian Lewis came back from 2-0 down to beat Cristo Reyes 3-2 in a pulsating conclusion to the afternoon session.

As is his wont, Lewis looked out of sorts until hope was all but lost, before conjuring a stirring comeback which ended when he took the final set 5-3.

Reyes, who grew frustrated at boos from sections of the crowd, missed two darts to force a break in the final set and they proved decisive as the two-time world champion survived.

It was the Spaniard who produced the first rally, edging the first set from 2-1 down, but he dominated the second and closed it out in 14 darts on double 10.

After extending his lead by taking the first leg of the third set, hitting tops in a 13-dart leg, Reyes was in full control, but Lewis began to up the tempo with an 85 finish on double five and an 82 finish on tops.

A trio of 140s in the following leg saw Lewis take it in 11 darts, this time hitting double 12 for an 81 checkout, but Reyes had the throw in the fourth set and remained favourite when winning the opening leg easily.

Lewis levelled by taking a scrappy leg in 20 darts, and he broke after Reyes missed two darts at double 16, the bed which ultimately cost him the match.

Lewis duly capitalised, levelling the scores at 2-2, before checking out 61 to move ahead for the first time in the match at the start of the fifth set.

Now in full flight, Lewis began the next leg with eight perfect darts, but after narrowly missing double 12 for a perfect leg he in fact went on to lose it as Reyes gamely kept his hopes alive.

At 3-3 in the final set, Reyes then missed two more darts at double 16, and after Lewis had stolen that leg he went on to win on double top, only after Reyes himself had missed a single dart to extend this engrossing encounter.

Wizard comes good at Christmas

Simon Whitlock eased past Harry Ward with a straight sets success, in which the Australian number one dropped just two legs.

Former World Championship finalist Whitlock will face Mervyn King in round three as he bids to reach the last 16 for the first time in six years.

"I've been practising harder than ever for this," said the Australian.

"I've put in around 100 hours on the board at home in the last six weeks and I feel like that made all the difference today."

Whitlock lost the first leg of the match, but took the next eight, a finish of 112 giving him the second set before he took out 100 to start the third.

Ward stopped the rot with a smart 76 finish but the damage had been done, and Whitlock's third and final maximum set him up for an easy hold in a one-sided 3-0 win.

Sweet success for Seigo

Seigo Asada's clash with Keegan Brown had been billed as a pick 'em and duly went the distance, the Japanese star rallying brilliantly to steal victory from the jaws of defeat in a stunning 3-2 win.

Brown, long considered a big talent yet to fully demonstrate what he can do, threw two maximums as he won the first set without dropping a leg, and a finish of 99 helped him to repeat the feat in the second set.

After the Englishman then took his seventh leg in succession, there appeared to be only one result, but he then mossed two darts at double 16 and, like that, the match turned.

Asada hit double eight, took the next leg with a 76 finish, and closed out the set in 21 darts as Brown went to pieces, throwing 48, 82, 41 and 65 throughout the mid-portion of the leg.

More stray darts from Brown saw Asada dominate the fourth set and yet still he was behind, 1-0 and 2-1, in the decider, Brown appearing set to get out of jail.

Instead, Asada bravely held firm to establish a 3-2 lead, and then produced his best darts of the match, an 11-dart leg completed on double eight to send a shellshocked Brown packing.

World Darts Championship: Saturday results & Sunday schedule

Saturday December 21
Afternoon Session (1230 GMT)
Second Round (Best of 5 sets)
TV Coverage: Sky Sports Darts

  • Keegan Brown 2-3 Seigo Asada (Second Round)
  • Simon Whitlock 3-0 Harry Ward (Second Round)
  • Steve West 0-3 Ryan Searle (Second Round)
  • Adrian Lewis 3-2 Cristo Reyes (Second Round)

Evening Session (1900)
Second Round (Best of 5 sets)
TV Coverage: Sky Sports Darts

  • Daryl Gurney 3-0 Justin Pipe (Second Round)
  • Glen Durrant 3-0 Damon Heta (Second Round)
  • Mensur Suljovic 1-3 Fallon Sherrock (Second Round)
  • Dimitri Van den Bergh 3-0 Josh Payne (Second Round)

Sunday December 22
Afternoon Session (1230 GMT)
Third Round (Best of 7 sets)
TV Coverage: Sky Sports Darts

  • Jonny Clayton v Stephen Bunting
  • Darius Labanauskas v Max Hopp
  • Nathan Aspinall v Krzysztof Ratajski

Evening Session (1900)
Third Round (Best of 7 sets)
TV Coverage: Sky Sports Darts

  • James Wade v Steve Beaton
  • Kim Huybrechts v Danny Noppert
  • Michael van Gerwen v Ricky Evans

CLICK HERE FOR FULL WORLD DARTS CHAMPIONSHIP SCHEDULE AND GUIDE

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