The PDC’s inaugural European Tour event provided many highlights for some of MODUS’ top stars, including James Wade’s run to the final and a Simon Whitlock nine-darter in the Austrian Darts Open.
Wade was denied victory by Justin Pipe at the Arena Nova in Wiener Neustadt, as ‘The Machine’ lost out in a high-quality final on Sunday evening, despite posting an impressive average of 105.56
Wade, who had seen off Kim Huybrechts on Sunday afternoon, also beat Wes Newton and Dave Chisnall before eventually succumbing to Pipe in the final, in which ‘The Machine’ hit a ten-darter.
The world number three takes home £7500 in prize money as runner up, along with a confidence boosting run ahead of his McCoy’s Premier League showdown with Phil Taylor on Thursday.
Raymond van Barneveld also enjoyed a good run in Austria. The Dutchman reached the semi-finals, where he produced a sensational 170 checkout, only to be denied by Pipe.
‘Barney’ had beaten Welsh pair Mark Webster and Richie Burnett on his way to the last four. His attention also turns to Birmingham, where he faces Gary Anderson in the Premier League on Thursday.
Simon Whitlock provided one of the best moments of the weekend when he produced a perfect nine-dart leg in his last 32 defeat to Joe Cullen. ‘The Wizard’ goes into his Premier League match at the NIA, needing just a point against Andy Hamilton to secure a semi-final spot.
Michael van Gerwen posted two ton-plus averages before being edged out by a single leg in the last 16, while Webster grabbed two wins, including a 6-0 whitewash in round two, before being stopped by ‘Barney’.
Credit must also go to young Arron Monk for running van Barneveld close in their first round match. The 2011 PDC under-21 World Champion was narrowly beaten 6-4 by the Dutch darting legend.
By Chris Murphy