Michael van Gerwen hit a sensational nine-dart finish in an incredible performance, which saw him defeat Steve Beaton 13-9 in round two of the Betfair World Matchplay.
The Dutchman powered past his opponent to reach the last eight for the first time at Blackpool’s Winter Gardens, hitting six finishes of over 100 in an explosive triumph over the former World Champion.
“I was delighted with my performance,” said van Gerwen.
“Especially as I kicked on well after the nine-darter.
“That was a very special moment for me and I enjoyed playing in such a brilliant match because Steve played very well too.
“I’ve been playing really well recently on the floor, which has given me great confidence and it all came good tonight.”
The first six legs of the match went with the throw, with van Gerwen taking out finishes of 108 and 116.
But it was Beaton who grabbed the game’s first break of throw, taking out 90 before van Gerwen responded with a brilliant 128 out.
Then came the magical moment, with ‘Mighty Mike’ hitting back to back 180s before sealing his spectacular nine dart finish with a 141 checkout.
The 23-year-old followed that up with another briliant checkout, this time 116.
Beaton levelled before the former World Master reeled off four legs in a row to take a 10-6 lead.
‘The Adonis’ took the next two before van Gerwen produced another fantatsic finish, taking out 120 in a leg that included his sixth maximum.
Beaton pulled it back to 11-9 before van Gerwen closed the match out, adding another 180 to end with an average of 104.36 – the highest of the tournament so far.
By Chris Murphy