February 2012

Australia  5 – 1 Netherlands

Australia powered their way through to the World Cup final with an impressive victory in Hamburg.

Simon Whitlock and Paul Nicholson produced another stunning performance in the pairs to eliminate defending champions Holland.

Photo: Lawrence Lustig/PDC

SIMON WHITLOCK 4 – 3 VINCENT VAN DER VOORT

Simon Whitlock continued his strong run of form in Hamburg as he beat Vincent van der Voort in the first singles match of the semi-final.

The world number five edged out his opponent in a last leg decider to give Australia an early lead in the match.

Both players missed doubles in the first leg before van der Voort held his throw. Whitlock hit double top at the first attempt in leg two to go level, and he took the lead by hitting double eight to win the third leg.

‘The Wizard’ hit his first maximum in the next leg before checking out 64 to edge closer to victory. Van der Voort fired in a 180 on his way to reducing the deficit to a single leg, and a 174 helped ‘The Dutch Destroyer’ force a decider.

Whitlock triumphed by taking out 60 to get a point on the board for Australia.

PAUL NICHOLSON 0 – 4 RAYMOND VAN BARNEVELD

Raymond van Barneveld claimed a comfortable win over Paul Nicholson to pull Holland level in the match.

Photo: Lawrence Lustig/PDC

Van Barneveld continued his unbeaten record against ‘The Asset’ as he beat his opponent in straight legs.

‘Barney’ hit double top to take the first leg before checking out 62 to double his lead. The Dutchman hit double 16 to move within a leg of winning the game.

The five-time world champion finished the job in style by producing a sensational 148 checkout to complete the whitewash.

SIMON WHITLOCK 4 – 2 RAYMOND VAN BARNEVELD

Simon Whitlock maintained his perfect record in singles matches by inflicting Raymond van Barneveld’s first defeat.

The Australian raced three legs in front of his opponent before holding off a mini fight-back to seal his second win of the semi-final.

Van Barneveld started the game in style with a 180 but Whitlock fought back and hit double nine to snatch the leg. ‘The Wizard’ hit double ten to win the second leg.

Whitlock hit a 180 and followed it up by checking out 44 to go three legs in front. ‘Barney’ hit double 13 to pull a leg back, before getting himself right back in the game with a brilliant 87 checkout on the bull.

Whitlock just missed the bull for a 124 checkout but cleaned up the 25 to win the match and put Australia back in the overall lead.

 

PAUL NICHOLSON 4 – 2 VINCENT VAN DER VOORT

Paul Nicholson recovered from his earlier defeat by producing a fantastic performance to beat Vincent van der Voort.

Nicholson showed his class, posting a couple of fabulous legs to beat the Dutchman 4-2.

Van der Voort won the first leg before Nicholson hit double top to grab his first leg of the session. ‘The Asset’ hit double eight to take the lead but ‘The Dutch Destroyer’ pegged him straight back by hitting double sixteen.

Nicholson then posted a solid leg, with back to back 140’s followed by a ton, before setting up and hitting double 16. The Australian then secured victory with a brilliant eleven dart leg.

Nicholson’s victory gave his team a 3-1 advantage going into the decisive doubles game, which was worth 2 points.

WHITLOCK & NICHOLSON 4 – 0 VAN BARNEVELD & VAN DER VOORT

Australia took charge when Whitlock hit double ten to take the opening leg. Nicholson found the same bed to double the lead, before his teammate produced a stunning 105 finish to move within a leg of the final.

‘The Wizard’ then took out 110 to finish the job in style and secure the first spot in tonight’s final.

Australia will play either Wales or England for the World Cup title.

By Chris Murphy

Netherlands 4 – 0 Northern Ireland

The Netherlands moved a step closer to retaining their World Cup title after beating Northern Ireland in the quarter-final.

Vincent van der Voort and Raymond van Barneveld both won their singles matches before joining forces to win the pairs to set up a semi-final clash with Australia.

VINCENT VAN DER VOORT 4 – 3 Brendan Dolan

Photo: Lawrence Lustig/PDC

Vincent van der Voort produced a brilliant fight-back against Brendan Dolan to claim Holland’s first point of the quarter-final.

The fastest player in the world had to win three consecutive legs, two of which were against the throw, to claim victory from the jaws of defeat.

‘The Dutch Destroyer’ took out a neat 76 checkout to level after Dolan had won the first leg. The Irishman won the next two legs to open up a 3-1 lead in the race to four.

Van der Voort hit double sixteen in consecutive legs to force a decider. The Dutchman hit a 180 in the final leg before hitting double three to win the match, giving the Netherlands a one point lead overall.

RAYMOND VAN BARNEVELD 4 – 2 Michael Mansell

Raymond van Barneveld produced another strong display to overcome Northern Ireland’s Micky Mansell. The defending champion trailed twice in the quarter-final tie but hit back to make it two wins out of two for Holland in the singles.

Photo: Lawrence Lustig/PDC

Mansell won the first leg before ‘Barney’ hit tops to draw level. The Irishman then hit the same double to go back in front. Van Barneveld restored parity with a tidy 97 finish. He followed it up with a maximum and then hit double eight to take the lead for the first time.

The five time world champion hit double sixteen to seal the win and double his nation’s overall lead, meaning the best Northern Ireland could hope for from the doubles was to force a sudden death leg.

VAN DER VOORT & VAN BARNEVELD 4 – 3 Dolan & Mansell

Raymond van Barneveld and Vincent van der Voort made it four points out of four in the quarter-final with victory in the pairs.

The Dutch team won a final leg decider against Northern Ireland’s Brendan Dolan and Michael Mansell to secure their place in tomorrow’s semi-finals.

Van Barneveld opened with a 180 and his teammate hit double ten to put Holland in front. Their opponents drew level with a 14 dart leg before van der Voort took out 76 restore his team’s lead.

Northern Ireland won the fourth leg to level up once more. ‘Barney’ hit another maximum in response, and then hit double six to edge back in front.

Dolan hit double three to force a deciding leg, which Holland won when van der Voort produced a clinical 90 finish.

The Netherlands will play Australia in tomorrow’s semi-final.

By Chris Murphy

Wales 3 – 1 South Africa

Wales went through to the semi-finals of the World Cup after coming out on top in an exciting encounter with South Africa.

The result of the match was decided in a tense deciding leg after Wales had won one and lost one of the singles games, and were tied 3-3 in the pairs.

Mark Webster had cruised past Shawn Hogan with a stunning display before Richie Burnett was edged out by Devon Petersen.

The pair teamed up to come through the doubles and set up a potential semi-final tie with tournament favourites England.

MARK WEBSTER 4 – 0 Shawn Hogan

Mark Webster continued his remarkable run of form in the World Cup with a second consecutive whitewash. The Welshman wasted little time in grabbing the first point of the match for Wales by beating South Africa’s Shawn Hogan 4-0.

Webster produced some clinical checkouts. He took out 94 to win the first leg and 76 to take the second. ‘Spider’ raced into a 3-0 lead by hitting double ten. He posted his first maximum in the fourth and final leg, which he won with a brilliant eleven darter.

Richie Burnett 3 – 4 Devon Petersen

Richie Burnett suffered a narrow defeat at the hands of promising youngster Devon Petersen, meaning Wales’ fate would be decided in the pairs.

Burnett fell behind but responded with a maximum before drawing level. Petersen retook the lead and Burnett replied with another 180, before hitting double two to restore parity.

The young South African went back in front with a 105 checkout, but Burnett refused to be beaten and took out 41 to set up a deciding leg. The Prince of Wales hit 140, 180 and then 130 in the final leg but it wasn’t enough as Petersen took out 116 to win the game and draw the match level on points.

WEBSTER & Burnett 4 – 3 Hogan & Petersen

Wales secured their semi-final spot by winning an intense decider in the doubles. Mark Webster and Richie Burnett were made to work hard by the South African pairing of Shawn Hogan and Devon Petersen, but the Welshmen won the battle to progress.

Webster hit double top to give Wales the lead and Burnett hit double ten to double it. Hogan took out 100 to pull a leg back for South Africa and then 52 to draw level.

Burnett hit double eight to edge Wales back in front but Hogan took out 121 to set up a deciding leg. Webster just missed the bull for a 122 finish before Burnett hit double eight, making Petersen pay for a miscount.

Wales will play either England or USA in tomorrow’s semi-final.

By Chris Murphy

Australia 3 – 1 Belgium

Australia progressed into the semi-finals of the World Cup in Hamburg when Simon Whitlock and Paul Nicholson produced a stunning display in the doubles to dump Belgium out of the tournament.

Whitlock beat Kurt van de Rijck in straight legs before Nicholson suffered a defeat, meaning that the match would be decided by the doubles game.

Australia were sensational in the decider, and are looking like the team to beat after another convincing win.

SIMON WHITLOCK 4 – 0 Kurt van de Rijck

Simon Whitlock whitewashed Kurt van de Rijck to put Australia a point ahead in the quarter-final. ‘The Wizard’ produced a clinical display in his singles match in Hamburg, which he completed in double quick time.

Photo: Lawrence Lustig/PDC

Whitlock hit double ten to win both of the first two legs. ‘The Wizard’ hit double top to take the third leg with a tidy thirteen darter. He then responded to a 180 from his opponent by hammering in two of his own as he completed a convincing victory.

PAUL NICHOLSON 2 – 4 Kim Huybrechts

Paul Nicholson was beaten by Kim Huybrechts in the second singles match of the quarter-final against Belgium, meaning the match would be decided by the pairs match.

Huybrechts hit the bull to take the lead but ‘The Asset’ hit straight back. He hit double nine to level things up before slotting in his first maximum. Huybrechts took out 111 and then 129 to take a 3-1 lead. Nicholson then hit double 18 to keep himself in the match, before hammering home another maximum under pressure. But it was Huybrechts who won the leg, to draw Belgium level on points.

WHITLOCK & NICHOLSON 4 – 2 van de Rijck & Huybrechts

Simon Whitlock and Paul Nicholson finished off their opponents in a high quality doubles match. The Australian pair produced a stunning display of relentless scoring and sharp finishing to progress to the semi-finals.

Whitlock opened with a maximum and went on to hit double eight to give Australia the lead. Nicholson hit his first 180 in leg two before ‘The Wizard’ hit his second, setting up his teammate to take out 41.

Belgium pulled a leg back before Whitlock hit double top to move a leg away from the semi-finals. Huybrechts hit double ten to keep Belgium in the match and then applied the pressure on the Aussies with a 180. Nicholson hit back with high scoring though and Whitlock hit double top to seal the victory.

By Chris Murphy

World Cup of Darts: Round 2: The Netherlands 3 – 1 Austria

RAYMOND VAN BARNEVELD & VINCENT VAN DER VOORT 5 – 2 Dietmar Burger & Mensur Suljovic

Raymond van Barneveld and Vincent van der Voort joined forces to produce a solid display as they progressed to the quarter-finals of the World Cup.

The Dutch pair, defending their nation’s title, saw off the challenge of Austria with apparent ease.

Van der Voort got the ball rolling by hitting double one to win a tense opening leg. ‘The Dutch Destroyer’ then hit double top to move Holland into a 2-0 lead. He then took out 44 to complete an eleven dart leg for the Dutch team.

Mensur Suljovic pulled a leg back for Austria with a 121 checkout before van Barneveld hit double ten to move within a leg of victory. Austria grabbed a lifeline by winning the next leg but ‘Barney’ wrapped up the match with a smooth 76 checkout.

The Netherlands will take on Northern Ireland tonight as they bid to move a step closer to claiming their second consecutive World Cup title.

By Chris Murphy

World Cup of Darts: Round 2: Wales 4 – 0 Croatia

MARK WEBSTER & Richie Burnett 5 – 1 Tonci Restovic & Boris Krcmar

Mark Webster put in another strong performance as Wales brushed off the challenge of Croatia in convincing fashion.

‘Spider’ continued his brilliant form in the competition that he won 14 months ago. Webster and his partner Richie Burnett had both won their singles games yesterday, and victory in the pairs means they advance to the quarter finals with a 4-0 points win.

Croatia took the lead when Boris Krcmar checked out 135 before Burnett levelled for Wales. The Prince of Wales hit double ten to put his country in front. Webster then stepped forward and turned on the style, hitting a 117 finish to double the advantage.

Burnett hit double four to make it 4-1 to the 2010 finalists. Webster then hammered home two 180’s before Burnett hit double sixteen to complete the rout.

Wales will face either Scotland or South Africa in this evening’s quarter-final.

By Chris Murphy

World Cup of Darts: Round 2: Australia 4 – 0 Republic of Ireland          

SIMON WHITLOCK & PAUL NICHOLSON 5 – 2 Mick McGowan & William O’Connor

Australia put on a convincing display in the pairs, as they booked their place in the quarter-finals with a 5-2 triumph over the Republic of Ireland on Saturday afternoon.

Having both won their singles games yesterday, Simon Whitlock and Paul Nicholson completed the task by claiming two more points for winning the doubles, meaning they won the match 4-0 overall.

Australia won the first leg when Nicholson recovered from a stray shot a double top, by hitting double nineteen. It was Whitlock who turned on the style in leg two. He hit the first 180 of the match before finding the double eight bed to increase the lead.

Ireland pulled a leg back before Nicholson took out a neat 68 finish to restore a two leg advantage. Mick McGowan took out 102 to reduce the deficit again. Australia responded in kind when Whitlock checked out 78. Nicholson stuck in a maximum in the final leg, and ‘The Wizard’ stepped forward to finish the job by hitting double sixteen.

Nicholson said: “Today we just went up there and played darts. We played as a team and did a very professional job. We are building up a lot of confidence by getting the job done in that fashion. It was all about the team and we are both very pleased with how it went.”

Australia will face Belgium in tonight’s quarter-final and Nicholson believes it will be a tough test.

He added: “Tonight’s game will probably be the hardest that Simon I have ever had to play as a pair. Belgium is a great team and we are going to have to pull out our ‘A-game’ to beat them.  Once we know when we are scheduled to play, we will sit down and formulate a game plan and make sure we are prepared right. Simon and I are working towards the same goals. There are no personal agendas; we just want to win for Australia.”

By Chris Murphy

World Cup of Darts: Round 2: The Netherlands vs Austria

RAYMOND VAN BARNEVELD 4 – 3 Dietmar Burger

Raymond van Barneveld fought back to see off a spirited challenge from Dietmar Burger in the 2nd round of the World Cup in Hamburg.

The five-time world champion had to wait until the early hours of the morning to get on stage and begin the defence of the title he won in 2010. His opponent played well but van Barneveld found an extra gear and claimed the win.

‘Barney’ hit double 16 to edge in front but Burger won the next two legs to turn the game around. The Austrian hit a 180 in the next leg and van Barneveld responded with a 174 before levelling the match.

Berger took a 3-2 lead before the defending champion took out a neat 64 checkout to set up a deciding leg. The Dutchman then sealed victory and the first point of the match for his country.

VINCENT VAN DER VOORT 3 – 4 Mensur Suljovic

Vincent van der Voort suffered a narrow defeat at the hands of Mensur Suljovic in the early hours of Saturday morning in Hamburg.

The Dutchman had to wait until nearly 2am to get started and was denied victory despite showing glimpses of his brilliant best.

Suljovic took the lead before van der Voort took out 64 to level. The quick-fire Dutchman then produced a stunning 140 finish, much to the delight of the German crowd who constantly sang his name throughout the match.

The Dutch Destroyer was pegged back by his Austrian opponent, who won the next two legs to take a 3-2 lead. Van der Voort responded with a tidy 48 finish to set up a decider, which Suljovic won with a 14 dart leg.

Van der Voort and van Barneveld will be last on stage again today, when they take on their opponents in a doubles decider.

By Chris Murphy

World Cup of Darts: Round 2: Wales v Croatia

MARK WEBSTER 4 – 0 Tonci Restovic

Mark Webster started the World Cup in style, completing a 4 – 0 whitewash over Tonci Restovic in double quick time.

He reached the final of the inaugural tournament in 2010 and looks set to continue that stunning form 14 months on, as he put in a polished second round performance.

Webster said: “I’m really happy with my performance, I felt quite relaxed up there and I got the job done. Now we have to finish it off tomorrow.”

Webster took the first two legs, hitting a 180 in the process. ‘Spider’ then hit two more maximums in leg three, before hitting double ten to race into a three leg lead.

The Welshman took out 80 to complete the rout in the blink of an eye.

Webster’s teammate Richie Burnett won his game 4-3 to give Wales a 2-0 lead going into the doubles matches on Saturday. Victory in the pairs will book their place in the quarter finals.

Webster added: “It’s a format that we are not used to but Richie and I are playing really well, we are in great form and it was a shame that we ran into each other at the World Championship. We  are expecting to do really well in the tournament but we have to make sure we see the job through in the pairs. We don’t want to be going to a sudden death leg if we can help it, tonight was comfortable and we need to make sure tomorrow afternoon is the same.”

By Chris Murphy

World Cup of Darts: Round 2: Australia v Republic of Ireland

Australia moved a step closer to the last eight of the World Cup of Darts with two comprehensive singles victories over the Republic of Ireland in Hamburg.

SIMON WHITLOCK 4 – 1 Mick McGowan

Simon Whitlock cruised through his first singles game at the World Cup of Darts in Hamburg. The World Championship semi-finalist put on a stylish display to sweep aside Irishman Mick McGowan.

Whitlock said: “It was good out there tonight. The crowd were really noisy and they got behind me, which was great. It’s good to get off to a winning start, even though I wasn’t at my best.”

The Wizard hit double four to win the first leg and then quickly doubled his lead, hitting the first maximum of the match in the process. Mcgowan pulled a leg back before Whitlock took out 50 to leave himself within a leg of victory.

The Australian wasted no time in wrapping up the match, taking out 90 to get the job done in style.

 

PAUL NICHOLSON 4 – 0 William O’Connor

Paul Nicholson was in typically ruthless form in his first singles match at the World Cup. He completed a 4-0 whitewash over Irishman William O’Connor in Hamburg, winning every single leg against the throw.

The win gave Australia a 2-0 lead ahead of tomorrows pairs match. The Asset believes that him and his partner got their preparation right before their individual games and will need to do the same tomorrow.

He said: “We had a bit of a practise together today but also did some on our own. Tomorrow we will do all our practising together because it’s pairs. We need to make sure we leave the right doubles for each other, get a rhythm between us and get some camaraderie going. We have to beat what is put in front of us before we start to worry about the quarter-finals. I think the fact that we’ve played together before is a massive advantage over other pairs.”

Nicholson punished his opponent for missed doubles in the opening leg by checking out 64 in two darts. The Asset hammered in his first 180 in leg two before doubling his advantage. He then surged into a three leg lead by hitting double four. Nicholson completed the rout when he hit double eight.

Nicholson and Whitlock more than justified Australia’s tag as one of the front-runners for the tournament. They will be back in action tomorrow afternoon as they take on the same opponents in the pairs. Victory will see them progress into the quarter-finals.

Whitlock said: “I’m actually more of a pairs person so I’m really looking forward to tomorrow. Paul played really well tonight. I think we can make it through to the final.”

Nicholson added: “Tonight we have done half of the job, and the format means that we have to go and finish it tomorrow. From a confidence point of view it’s fantastic that we both won. Simon and I are quite happy with how we played and are really looking forward to tomorrow.”

By Chris Murphy