Aussie Simon Whitlock hits a 9 darter in his Semi-Final win against Andy Hamilton 8-6, and will play Phil Taylor in the final after his win by the same score over James Wade.
James Hubbard wins the Under 21s World Championships with a 6-3 win over Michael van Gerwen.
Andy Hamilton 6-8 Simon Whitlock
James Wade 6-8 Phil Taylor
SIMON WHITLOCK 8-6 ANDY HAMILTON SIMON WHITLOCK hit an incredible 9-dart finish and came from 4-1 down to defeat Andy Hamilton 8-6 and win through to the McCoy’s Premier League Darts final. The Australian landed the perfect leg in only the second leg of the contest before finding himself three legs down after Hamilton began the game with some flawless finishing.
Whitlock, though, clawed his way back in before taking the lead for the first time at 7-6, and took the next to erase the memory of his semi-final defeat in 2010 and win through to the decider. The game began in incredible fashion, with Hamilton winning the first leg with a 130 checkout before opening the second with a 180 – only for Whitlock to reply with two maximums before finishing 141 to land an amazing nine-darter, bringing 10,000 fans at The O2 to their feet.
Hamilton refused to blink despite the achievement, finishing 112 to break back in leg three and hitting 180s in the next two legs as finishes of double top and double 16 put him 4-1 without either player missing a dart at a double. Whitlock hit a 180 and tops to hit back, and then finished double ten to pull back to within a leg before Hamilton landed a maximum and double seven to lead 5-3.
Hamilton also hit a 180 in the ninth leg, but was punished for three misses as Whitlock posted double six to hit back – only for a 110 finish to see the Stoke ace move 6-4 up. Whitlock replied with a superb 12-darter before levelling the game in a dramatic 12th leg, as Hamilton saw his dart at double top land agonisingly just in double one, allowing Whitlock to level. Hamilton then missed double 18 and double nine in the next as Whitlock landed double nine to lead for the first time, before he sealed victory by taking out 76 on double 18.
0-1 Hamilton wins the opener against the throw with a brilliant 130 checkout, finished on double five. 1-1 - Both players open with 180s, with Hamilton landing a 140 before Whitlock lands another maximum to set up a nine-dart chance – AND HE FINSHES 141 FOR A NINE-DARTER! 1-2 – Hamilton finishes 112 to win the third leg – a third successive ton-plus finish! 1-3 – Hamilton posts tops to remain flawless in his finishing and move two legs clear. 1-4 – Hamilton lands double 16, hitting his fourth successive double at the first time of asking to maintain a 106 average. 2-4 – Whitlock hits his third 180 of the game and finishes tops to hit back going into the interval. 3-4 – Hamilton fails to pressure Whitlock, who misses three darts at tops but returns to land double ten to pull back to within touching distance. 3-5 – Hamilton hits a 180, and this time has the cushion to miss five darts at a double before landing double seven. 4-5 - Hamilton opens with a 180 but misses the bull for a 90 finish to break – only for Whitlock to miss double six to hit back. Hamilton misses double eight and four, and Whitlock lands double six to hold throw in a crucial leg. 4-6 – Hamilton hits his third ton-plus finish of the game by taking out 110 on double 18. 5-6 – Whitlock hits back, hitting a 180 to leave 84, which he finishes with a bullseye, double 17 combination. 6-6 - Whitlock leaves 84 again, but misses the bull to complete a 16, 18, bullseye combination – but Hamilton misses double top in double one, and Whitlock finishes tops to level the game. 7-6 - Hamilton hits 140, 137 and 140 to leave 87, but misses double 18 and double nine to break, and Whitlock finishes double nine for a 14-darter to lead for the first time. 8-6 – Whitlock completes an amazing comeback by finishing 76 on double 18.
Phil Taylor 8-6 James Wade
PHIL TAYLOR was forced to battle from behind before defeating James Wade 8-6 to reach the McCoy’s Premier League Darts final. Taylor has finished top of the league table this season after dropping only four points in the weekly rounds, but was facing the prospect of a second successive semi-final exit in the tournament when Wade took a 4-2 lead.
Taylor battled back to lead 6-4 before Wade levelled, but a stunning 149 checkout turned the game in the world number one’s favour, and he finished 80 in the next leg to set up a final against Simon Whitlock. ”It was a struggle from start to finish,” admitted Taylor. “I felt very, very nervous and maybe the venue and the occasion put me under pressure.
“I just didn’t feel comfortable up there. I was maybe trying too hard, and when you try too hard they don’t go in. When you relax, the darts flow and they go in.” Wade, with the advantage of throw, held the early cushion with finishes of 87 and 104 as he took a 2-1 lead, with Taylor having finished 112 in the second leg before landing double eight in the fourth.
The pair traded 180s in the next, with Taylor missing double eight to break as Wade landed double ten to lead 3-2, before the left-hander swooped on a rare score of 30 from Taylor in leg six, hitting a 180 with his next visit before landing double five for a 4-2 cushion. Taylor hit back in style, landing a 177 in a 14-darter to win the seventh against the throw and tops to level before taking the next two following misses from Wade to move ahead for the first time at 6-4.
The pair traded 180s again in the 11th leg, as Wade hit back on double 12 before then squaring the match with a break of throw on double ten.
Wade also left himself 58 after 12 darts in the next, but could only watch on as Taylor hammered home a 149 checkout to break and lead 7-6 before coolly landing tops to move into the final.
0-1 – Wade finishes 87 for a confident opening leg. 1-1 – Taylor takes out 112 to level the game. 1-2 – Wade checks out 104 to hold throw, with Taylor waiting on 40 to break. 2-2 – Taylor lands double eight to level the contest. 2-3 – The pair trade 180s, with Wade missing the bull for a 161 finish before returning to hit double ten after Taylor missed double eight to break. 2-4 - Wade pounces on a score of 30 from Taylor by hitting a 180 to leave 81 after nine darts, and eventually lands double five to break throw and lead by two at the interval. 3-4 – Taylor opens the leg with a 177 and, when Wade misses tops for a 108 checkout, he returns to land double eight for a 14-darter to break. 4-4 – Taylor levels the game by hitting tops at the first time of asking to nudge his average over 100. 5-4 - Taylor misses double five for a 130 finish, but Wade is unable to post double 18 for a 116 finish, and Taylor posts double five with his third dart to lead for the first time – and his celebration shows how much the leg means. 6-4 – Wade hits a 180 to leave 64, but when Taylor misses double 16 the left-hander cannot finish tops. Taylor returns and misses three darts outside double eight, but the drama intensifies as Wade misses double ten and two darts at double five, and Taylor lands double eight to win a key leg. 6-5 - Taylor opens with a 180, but Wade matches the maximum, and although he misses double 12 for a 125 checkout he returns to hit the bed for a 14-darter. 6-6 – Wade breaks back immediately, missing the bull for a 164 finish but returning to the oche to land double ten to level. 7-6 – Taylor takes out a superb 149 checkout to move a leg away from the final. 8-6 – Taylor finishes 80 on tops to seal his place in the final.
McCoys Premier League Final
Simon Whitlock v Phil Taylor
0-1 - Whitlock misses four darts at a double to break, and Taylor lands double four to win the opener. 0-2 - Taylor opens with a 177, and although he misses the bull for a 124 finish, he has enough cushion to return and hit double eight. 0-3 - Taylor misses the bull for a 161 finish, but again lands double eight as he moves three legs clear. 1-3 - Whitlock finishes 96 on double eight to get off the mark. 1-4 - Taylor scores 180 and 140 before finishing 81 on tops for a 12-darter. 1-5 - Whitlock lands a maximum in reply but misses double top and ten, allowing Taylor in to finish 89 on the bull to move halfway to victory. 1-6 - Taylor finishes 109 on tops to move five legs clear. 2-6 - Whitlock hits a 174 to leave 24, and when Taylor misses tops for a 101 finish the Australian lands double 12 to hit back. 2-7 - Whitlock lands a 180 but Taylor finishes double eight to win his seventh leg. 3-7 - Taylor misses a dart at tops, and Whitlock steps in to hit double ten and win his second leg in three. 4-7 - Whitlock hits a 171, and punishes Taylor for a miss at tops by hitting the same bed to break for the first time in the game. 5-7 - Whitlock posts his third 180 of the game, and finishes 80 in two darts on double ten to win a third straight leg and pull back to within touching distance.
PDC UNICORN WORLD YOUTH CHAMPIONSHIP FINAL
Michael van Gerwen 3-6 James Hubbard
0-1 – Hubbard makes a brilliant start, hitting 140, 180, 145 and finishing double nine for an 11-darter. 0-2 – Hubbard lands a 171 to leave 32, and when van Gerwen misses tops he returns to land double eight and break throw. 0-3 – Hubbard finishes 81 with treble 15 and double 18 to move three legs clear. 1-3 – van Gerwen finishes 76 in two darts to win his first leg of the game. 1-4 - Hubbard scores 140, 140 and 120 before missing tops for a 101 finish, but he has enough cushion to return and land double ten with his third dart. 2-4 – Hubbard misses double 19, double eight and three darts at double four before van Gerwen lands double 16. 3-4 – van Gerwen hits a 180 to leave 102, and takes out the combination with single 20, bull and double 16. 3-5 – Hubbard hits tops to move one leg away from the title. 3-6 – van Gerwen misses double 15 for an 88 finish, and Hubbard hits tops for the victory.