Raymond van Barneveld and Simon Whitlock lit up Nottingham’s Capital FM Arena with stunning victories on night nine of the McCoy’s Premier League.
‘Barney’ posted his highest ever televised average in an 8-6 victory over Kevin Painter, while ‘The Wizard’ demolished Gary Anderson 8-2, leaving both of the victorious players tied on ten points in the table.
Van Barneveld, who averaged 112.28, saw off a late fight back from Painter, to keep himself in the play-off places. The Dutchman hopes to take this kind of form to Sheffield next week, where a showdown with his Premier League nemesis Phil ‘The Power’ Taylor awaits.
“I know what I can do and that’s what I keep saying to myself now,” said the five-time world champion. “You can’t send a message to Phil, he’s too good. I’m just proud of what I’ve done tonight but I hope I can play this well against him next week.
“Everything has to be right next week. I will have to take my chances because he will always be on a finish ready to pounce. Every player is so close and we’ve all got a chance to make the playoffs. That is great though, it’s what we want to see.”
Whitlock completed an impressive double over reigning Premier League champion Anderson. The Australian swept past his Scottish opponent in clinical fashion, to bounce back from his nightmare 8-0 defeat last week.
“To get an 8-0 flogging wasn’t real good, but I showed a lot of character tonight,” said ‘The Wizard’, who is now second in the table.
“I went out there with a positive mind and put last week to bed by playing my best tonight. You have to throw a 100 average to win nowadays, and if you do that you’re going to win a lot of games.
“I’m back up to second but I’ll be happy to be in the top four – the McCoy’s Premier League is going to be a very tight finish but I’m in a good position.”
James Wade was replaced in the top four by Adrian Lewis, after the world champion came out on top in their duel. ‘The Machine remains in strong contention for a semi-final spot, however, as he is just a point behind ‘Jackpot’ with a game in hand.
The other match of the evening saw Phil Taylor seal his place in the play-offs with a narrow 8-6 win over Andy Hamilton.
By Chris Murphy
Latest League Table
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SIMON WHITLOCK 8 –2 Gary Anderson
Simon Whitlock moved to second in the McCoy’s Premier League table with a convincing victory over Gary Anderson in Nottingham.
‘The Wizard’ averaged over 100 as he completed a double over the reigning champion at the Capital FM Arena, to banish the demons of the whitewash he suffered in Cardiff.
“It was very important to bounce back after last week,” said Whitlock, who now has ten points. “I showed a lot of character and I’m happy with how I played.
“I felt really comfortable with my darts tonight as I was using new flights, which hadn’t arrived last week, and when I feel comfortable, I’m always confident of winning.
“You have to throw hundred averages these days; if you don’t you can end up in trouble. It’s going to be a really close finish but I’m in a good position now and I’ll be delighted if I finish in the top four.”
Whitlock hit double 16 to win the opening leg before Anderson levelled up with a 143 checkout. ‘The Wizard’ took out 65 to restore his lead, which he doubled straight after by grabbing the first break of the match.
The Australian opened up a three leg lead when he hit double four to win leg five, hitting his first 180 along the way. He hit his second maximum with his first three darts of the next leg, which he won against the throw taking a 5-1 lead into the break.
‘The Wizard’ made it 6-1 when he neatly took out 64 to hold, before Anderson pulled a leg back. Whitlock hit his third 180 with his first three darts of the ninth leg, which he won in style with a ten-darter.
The world number five opened with three perfect darts once again, before finishing the job with a tidy 74 checkout.
Whitlock faces Kevin Painter in Sheffield next Thursday.
By Chris Murphy
RAYMOND VAN BARNEVELD 8 – 6 Kevin Painter
Raymond van Barneveld produced his highest ever televised average to see off a late fight-back from Kevin Painter, as he clinched victory at Nottingham’s Capital FM Arena.
The popular Dutchman averaged over 112 and hit an incredible 15 140’s in the triumph, which puts him on ten points after nine weeks of action.
“I played well, but I was still made to work for the win,” said van Barneveld, who faces Phil Taylor next week. “I had to hit that double ten at the end. That was more important than the average. The average is nice but was just a bonus.
“Everyone has a chance to qualify for the playoffs. It’s the closest Premier League we’ve ever had but I want to make sure that I’m one of the other three players that make it, along with Phil.”
‘Barney’ got the upper hand immediately, hitting double eight to take the first leg against the throw before doubling his advantage with a neat 84 checkout. Painter pulled a leg back before the Dutchman took out 81 in clinical fashion, to hold his throw and go 3-1 ahead.
Painter hit back again by winning the fifth leg, but van Barneveld responded with his first 180 before hitting double eighteen, as he headed into the break with a two leg lead.
The five-time world champion picked up where he left off after the interval, opening leg seven with his second maximum before taking out 100 in two darts to break his opponent’s throw.
Painter began to ask questions of ‘Barney’, breaking the throw for the first time to reduce the deficit to 5-3. Van Barneveld had the perfect reply though. He threw six perfect darts at treble twenty and broke straight back.
Van Barneveld just missed the double for a 149 checkout in the ninth leg, but won it nevertheless, tidying up double eight at the first attempt.
Painter kept the match alive by winning the next two legs despite ‘Barney’ upping his maximum count to five. ‘The Artist’ then took out 120 to move within a leg of clinching a draw but van Barneveld crushed his opponents hopes, hitting double ten to wrap up the victory and take his points tally into double figures.
By Chris Murphy
James Wade, Simon Whitlock and Raymond van Barneveld head to Nottingham for night nine of the McCoy’s Premier League on Thursday, with the intention of winning their respective matches and keeping themselves planted firmly in the play-off places.
Wade has turned his form around dramatically in recent weeks to move to second in the table. ‘The Machine’ is hoping to complete a Premier League double over Adrian Lewis at the Capital FM Arena.
“Adrian is a world class player and I’m looking forward to it,” said the 2009 champion. “He’s very flamboyant and very interesting to watch and it’s good for the sport that we’re chasing each other.
“He’s a world class player who’s won two World Championship titles. I’m chasing him on that front and I respect him for that.”
Whitlock is hoping to bounce back from the whitewash he suffered at the hands of Wade last week, when he takes on reigning champion Gary Anderson.
“It was horrible,” said ‘The Wizard’. “Nothing went right for me and I don’t ever want that to happen to me again. I’ve been practising hard and I want to put it right when I play Gary.”
Whitlock and Wade are both tied on eight points, as is van Barneveld, who is up against Kevin Painter.
It’s a battle of the Stokies in the nights other match, as runaway league leader Phil Taylor faces 2012 World Championship finalist Andy Hamilton.
By Chris Murphy
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Sunday 2nd June 2012
Doors open 6pm – Main Event 7:45pm
The Winter Gardens
Normal Tickets £30 + £2 booking fee
VIP Tickets £60 + £2 booking fee
Player meet ‘n’ greet and VIP Table Seating
Amateur darts players from Brighton and Dartford are being urged to throw themselves a sporting chance of a lifetime, by attempting to qualify for the Speedy Services UK Open – with the help of a hugely popular world champion.
The first two qualifiers for the Speedy Services UK Open – “the FA Cup of darts” – will feature 2008 world champion, Mark Webster, who is the official ambassador of Speedy’s qualifying events.
Players hoping to realise a lifelong dream and play on one of the world’s most famous oches can now take their first steps by clicking on http://sports.speedyservices.com and registering for the qualifying events, taking place in Brighton and Dartford on Wednesday and Thursday.
The first two of six Speedy qualifiers will take place at the Speedy Services Depot on Newtown Road, Hove on Wednesday April 4 and the Questor Industrial Estate in Buttely Avenue, Dartford, on Thursday April 5, with the first arrows being thrown at 12pm prompt.
Once registered, players will be able to rub shoulders with Mark who will be offering coaching tips, before embarking on the 15 dart challenge with the highest 8 scores then playing a game of 501.
Speedy, the UK’s leading provider of equipment and support services to construction, manufacturing, industrial, rail and related industries, enjoyed a highly successful sponsorship of last year’s UK Open in Bolton.
Budding throwers will be given 15 darts at the board, with the highest four scores overall at each event winning a place at the Speedy ServicesUK Open at the Reebok Stadium in June.
Speedy’s group marketing director Steve McIntyre said: “Existing Speedy customers are encouraged to enter along with dart enthusiasts who are also interested in finding out more about Speedy’s product and service offering.
“No other sporting event can offer an incentive like this, where fans can actually qualify to play their heroes, in front of millions of TV viewers across the world.
“With all this in mind, we couldn’t be more excited about our sponsorship and hope as many people will attend the events as possible.”
For more information about Speedy and its six qualifying events, visit http://sports.speedyservices.com
MODUS’ star players are making their mark with the POSCA pens they use to sign photographs and merchandise.
The unique POSCA water-based paint marker, supplied by Mitsubishi Pencil Co., is ideal for the world’s top darts professionals to personalise products with an autograph.
The multi-use marker pens are perfect for the likes of James Wade, Simon Whitlock, Raymond van Barneveld and Paul Nicholson to sign anything from dartboards to clothing.
“It can be really frustrating when you want to sign something for your fans and only have a pen that is no good for use on anything other than paper,” said Nicholson (pictured).
“It’s important to be confident that you can sign anything for your fans. POSCA marker pens work on any surface or material, so me and the other players can always oblige and not leave our fans disappointed.”
Jason Thame, MODUS managing director, added: “The players which we represent have to sign hundreds of autographs on a whole host of memorabilia. It is therefore important to have a pen which delivers consistent results.
“POSCA are great for autograph signings due to their vibrant colours and consistency. The silver bullet tip POSCA works particularly well for signed photographs as it really stands out on the image.”
For more information on the POSCA marker and other products, visit their website.
By Chris Murphy