Template - Date: US Masters ‘WS2’

Two-time World Champion Anderson showed his class with a series of gritty performances as he took the £20,000 title and continued his global success with a first win in Las Vegas.

Anderson followed up his brilliant first round win over DJ Sayre by ending the hopes of Canadian youngster Dawson Murschell with an 8-5 quarter-final win, after trailing 3-2 early on. He was also made to work hard in the semi-finals, avoiding defeat by the width of a wire against James Wade before prevailing in a deciding leg.

Wade led 6-2 before Anderson hit back to level, and the left-hander then moved 7-6 up only to miss double ten for a 140 checkout and victory, before the Scot levelled and took out 75 to snatch the win. World Champion Cross made the early running in the final by taking a 3-0 lead, and also held a 4-1 advantage.

Anderson, though, punished missed doubles from his rival as he levelled in a run of seven legs as he stormed to victory, sealing the title with a stunning 164 checkout. Cross had won through to his first World Series of Darts final with impressive wins over Michael Smith and Peter Wright during Saturday’s final day of action.

Smith played his part in an outstanding quarter-final, sharing the opening 12 legs before Cross pulled clear to win 8-6, with the pair landing seven maximums apiece. Cross then overcame Peter Wright 8-3 in the semi-finals, but was denied the title by Anderson’s amazing fightback.

Wade had produced one of his most dominant displays on the World Series stage as he ended Michael van Gerwen’s title defeat with an outstanding 8-3 quarter-final victory. Wade led 5-0 before Van Gerwen hit back, but a crucial 161 stopped the world number one’s fightback in its tracks as he moved into the last four.

Wright overcame 2017 US Masters finalist Daryl Gurney 8-6 in their quarter-final tie, avenging a narrow loss to the Northern Irish ace at the same stage a year ago. The eight PDC stars, including Friday’s first round victim Gerwyn Price, will now travel to China ahead of the next World Series of Darts event, the Shanghai Darts Masters, on July 13-14.

William Hill US Darts Masters

Saturday July 7th

Quarter-Finals (15)
Peter Wright 8-6 Daryl Gurney
Rob Cross 8-6 Michael Smith
Gary Anderson 8-5 Dawson Murschell
Michael van Gerwen 3-8 James Wade

Semi-Finals (15)
Peter Wright 3-8 Rob Cross
Gary Anderson 8-7 James Wade

Final (15)
Rob Cross 4-8 Gary Anderson

Template - Date: Smith wins North American Championship

The big-stage action in Las Vegas began as New Brunswick’s Smith scooped the $10,000 title and a place in the William Hill World Darts Championship. The 42-year-old had come through the qualifiers earlier in the week despite a flight cancellation meaning that he was only able to fly in to Las Vegas on Tuesday morning.

However, he showed his class to succeed Willard Bruguier as the North American Champion with some gutsy displays. He firstly came from 2-0 down to defeat Ross Snook 6-5 in the quarter-finals, surviving one missed match dart from his fellow Canadian before prevailing in the deciding leg.

Smith then defeated American youngster Danny Lauby 6-3 in the semi-finals before overcoming Canada’s Norman Jnr in the final. Newfoundland’s Norman Jnr had come from 3-1 down to level the tie, but a superb 121 checkout from Smith edged him back ahead before he punished seven missed doubles from his rival to open up a 5-3 lead.

Norman hit back on double five to keep his hopes alive, but Smith sealed glory with a fine 108 checkout to capture the biggest title of his career. “It means a lot,” said Smith. “I had to work hard all the way through.

“My plane came in late on the first day so I was doubtful even to get to the stage.

“I started a bit slowly today and I had to improve a lot to win this title. I’ve played John so many times and he’s such a good player. “With the PDC doing what they’re doing here, it’s really giving us a chance and the game’s progressing. It’s been spectactular.”

Smith, a former Lakeside Championship finalist, made his William Hill World Darts Championship debut last December, overcoming Luke Humphries before losing out to Gary Anderson.

“It was such a great experience for me to get to go last year, and I really appreciate the PDC giving me that opportunity to play,” added Smith. “I’ve got a little bit of experience now playing on the big stage, and I really can’t wait to get back and do it again. I’m so happy – it’s going to be awesome.

“The atmosphere there is beyond anything that I’ve ever experienced. I’ve played the Grand Slam in Wolverhampton and that was amazing but to step on that Ally Pally stage is unreal – you can’t explain it until you get up there and do it.”

Norman Jnr had whitewashed David Cameron in his opening fixture, before edging past Dawson Murschell 6-5 in the semi-finals, after the youngster missed one dart at tops to claim victory in the decider.

I tried my best, but hats off to Jeff Smith,” admitted Norman Jnr. “He’s a great player and an ambassador for north America – he’s fantastic.”

Murschell was a 6-3 quarter-final winner against DJ Sayre as he hit six doubles from seven attempts, while Lauby’s big-stage debut saw him overcome Joseph Huffman 6-4 before losing out to Smith.

The eight north American aces will return to the Mandalay Bay stage on Friday to compete in the William Hill US Darts Masters, where they face eight top PDC stars in the two-day World Series of Darts event.

William Hill North American Championship

Thursday July 5th

Quarter-Finals
John Norman Jnr 6-0 David Cameron
Dawson Murschell 6-3 DJ Sayre
Danny Lauby 6-4 Joseph Huffman
Jeff Smith 6-5 Ross Snook

Semi-Finals
John Norman Jnr 6-5 Dawson Murschell
Jeff Smith 6-3 Danny Lauby

Final
Jeff Smith 6-4 John Norman Jnr