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Day 14 darts review: Lewis to contest Anderson’s world crown

| 03.01.2016

Holly Thackeray | January 2, 2016

Day 14 evening session semi-finals reaction

  • Raymond van Barneveld battled back from an early Adrian Lewis battering bust still lost 6-3 in opener at Alexandra Palace
  • Gary Anderson hit the first nine-darter of the tournament as he took out Jelle Klaasen 6-0
  • Jackpot now faces The Flying Scotsman in the grand finale on Sunday

Lewis bares teeth to break Barney, Anderson smashes Klaasen to reach final again

As the last four squared-up on an electric Ally Pally oche to wrestle for a spot on the grandest arrowsmith stage of all, the 2016 PDC World Darts Championship final, not everyone was at the races.

Adrian Lewis looked set to brush Raymond van Barneveld (arguably the star of the tournament) aside in a brutal battering after going five sets clear, but the cult hero lessened the blow by proudly regaining three sets, though could not pull off another classic comeback as he finally folded at 6-3.

It was then up to underdog Jelle Klaasen and current world champ Gary Anderson to fight it out to play Jackpot for the big prize on Sunday evening, with The Flying Scotsman pulling out all the stops (including an incredible nine-darter) to win by a 6-0 whitewash.

Should you have missed any of the magic, read up here before tomorrow’s tremendous finale…

Raymond van Barneveld 3-6 Adrian Lewis (1-3, 2-3, 0-3, 2-3, 1-3, 3-1, 3-2, 3-2, 1-3)

Two-time world tungsten champion Jackpot got proceedings underway and steamed to the first two legs, despite the vocal Barney Army support, as his Dutch rival yet again got off to a lukewarm start.

Van Barneveld then, in a spell of darting deja-vu, missed five darts to deliver Lewis the set, which the Englishman gladly grabbed with both hands on double one.

Falling behind early against a player at his peak, never mind one that had up until then conceded just two sets all tournament, left Barney in a pickle and, after losing five legs on the trot, it appeared the crowd hero was in for a pummelling.

Did the Dutch great have it in him for a third heroic return from the ashes? A few ton finishes aside and apart from a consolation leg to keep the second set briefly alive, there was little early on to suggest another phoenix-style flourish was in his locker.

Then, out of the blue, to buoy his considerable support, Barney blazed in a 161 to level on legs and halt Lewis’ march with a spot of magic. It was ultimately all in vein, however, as Jackpot snatched the advantage back and, in fact doubled it, by taking out tops.

After Barney, once again back in the world top 10 rankings, made a hash of his attempts on double five, Lewis mopped up to extend his perfect start. Though, the Ally Pally continued to urge the older veteran on, Jackpot was just much more clinical, further quashing comeback hopes with his third set on the bounce.

There was another 161 checkout from Van Barneveld to keep a glimmer of hope in those tiger’s eyes, but it proved a mere flicker as Lewis responded with a 116 finish, followed by a 180 to emphatically put a cork in his foe’s comeback fizz.

A 12-dart leg by Jackpot further tamed the wounded tungsten tiger, after Barney bagged another, but the Dutchman could not keep up with his younger rival’s consistency and quality and surrendered a fourth straight set with a whimper.

His favoured 121 checkout finally saw Van Barneveld record a set and then one more for good measure on 134 to avoid the dreaded darting whitewash, as Lewis was punished for his own poor throwing.

Barney burst back with an expertly claimed third set to bamboozle Lewis with his oche artistry, but ultimately the gap was too big to bridge, as Jackpot bounded back from the break to finally crush the embarrassing uprising, putting his esteemed peer out to pasture at 6-3. Having shown vulnerabilities, however, Jackpot (now evens with Coral to take this title) could struggle against the more aggressive Anderson.

Gary Anderson 6-0 Jelle Klaasen (3-0, 3-2, 3-2, 3-2, 3-0, 3-1)

Just when viewers though the previous game could not be topped….

Title holder Anderson’s so far deadly and determined defence of his trophy surpassed all expectation in the opening set here, with his easy capture of it overlooked due to the Scot sensationally scoring the first perfect leg of the tournament.

It was fitting for The Flying Scotsman to start with a nine-darter, sending the crowd delirious (and West Ham United left back Aaron Cresswell on Twitter), after a tough year since his big win in 2015. He certainly saves his best for the Ally Pally.

Klaasen came out of the shadows to quietly level legs in the second set of the match, but was lacking the Scot’s sparkle, and succumbed yet again.

The Cobra kept himself in contention with a handful of 180s before pushing for a third set decider, but was unable to match the world champion’s wily scoring.

Anderson made it look too easy, cantering past Klaasen just as he did against James Wade, but did have to chuckle when he miscounted and fluffed a chance for another leg. The Cobra could not capitalise though, so The Flying Scotsman stole it back on double five, before scampering to a fourth successive set with no reply.

With Klaasen seemingly out for the count, this game ground to a halt quicker then expected, as unstoppable Anderson made it a menacing 5-0, before going for the jugular as he checked out on tops to go within one game of retaining his crown.

The reigning champ will now have to knock out Lewis with the same panache if he is to keep that coveted silverware close for another year, and equal Jackpot’s world titles tally.


For more World Darts reaction, check out our reviews archive to catch up on any action missed. Or delve into our darts page to find out what is next!

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Holly Thackeray

Holly is a member of the content team, and can often be found on the sports desk writing about favourite topics Serie A and East Asian footballing nations. A recent darts convert, she is also a fully-fledged member of Barney's Army and a proud Leeds-born Manchester United fan.