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Phil Taylor v Stephen Bunting (7-1) Week 3 Premier League

February 21st, 2015

MICHAEL VAN GERWEN moved a point clear at the top of the Betway Premier League table with a 7-4 win over World Champion Gary Anderson on Thursday, as Stephen Bunting suffered disappointment in Liverpool with a 7-1 reverse to Phil Taylor.

Van Gerwen ended Anderson’s winning start to the season as he punished the Scot for 23 missed doubles during their contest.

Although the game failed to live up to the standard of Sunday’s German Darts Championship final – when van Gerwen averaged almost 118 – it carried high drama throughout as Anderson saw a 3-1 lead over the world number one slip away.

Van Gerwen took five straight legs as he moved 6-3 up, and though Anderson hit back with a 68 finish it was the Dutchman who won the 11th leg, on double 12, to seal his third win of the season.

“There was a lot of pressure tonight because one of us was going to be top of the league with a win so you know you can’t afford any mistakes, and I’m glad I didn’t make as many as Gary,” said van Gerwen.

“His scoring was a bit better than mine, but he didn’t take advantage. I can’t always be at my best but to get the win was the most important thing.

“The crowd were fantastic in a big venue and I enjoyed this win. I feel good and this will give me more confidence.”

Dave Chisnall and James Wade join van Gerwen in being unbeaten after three weeks, after they shared the points with a six-all draw in front of over 7,000 fans in Liverpool.

Chisnall led 2-0 only to allow Wade back into the match before a 142 checkout secured the 2009 Premier League champion a point, but the St Helens ace took the game’s final leg with a 14-darter to claim a share of the spoils.

“I think it was the right result but I gave a point away,” said Wade. “I’ll take the draw and move on from here.

“The 142 was great and those type of shots are going in okay, but then I got a little bit lazy in the last leg. I think we were both under par throughout the game, but I’ll take a draw when I’m not playing so well.”

Chisnall said: “James was steady and he finished well, so I’ll take a point from that.

“I didn’t feel nervous but it was one of those nights where the darts didn’t go as well as I wanted them to and neither of us scored as well as we wanted to.

“Early on I could have gone 3-0 up, and that’s where the game changed. The 142 to put him 6-5 up was a big shot as well because if he didn’t hit that I probably would have won the game.”

Two other games on the night ended in a stalemate, as Kim Huybrechts denied Adrian Lewis a win from their game and Peter Wright came from 5-1 down to claim a draw with reigning Premier League champion Raymond van Barneveld.

Van Barneveld had seemed set to storm to victory when he romped into a 5-1 lead with an average of 118 – only for Wright to finish 147, 124 and a key 94 as he hit back to claim his first point of the season.

“It feels like a win after coming from 5-1 down,” admitted Wright. “I had my own battle in my head tonight because I didn’t want to lose 7-1 again and I dug deep and managed to pull back into the game.

“My finishing helped me out but I should be scoring with these guys and that’s not quite happening at the moment. Hopefully that will start to come in the next few weeks, but to get a point this week is good and I’m proud of my fighting spirit.”

Belgian ace Huybrechts also picked his first point of the year, in his debut season, as he took out 62 in the deciding leg of his clash with Lewis.

“It was a weird match and it probably wasn’t the best game we’ve played but I’m happy with the point,” said Huybrechts. “The first point in your debut season is the hardest to get and I’ve got that.

“I held on and when Adrian gave me chances I took them tonight. I had put a lot of pressure on myself being in the Premier League because you want to prove you belong here, but I said that I want to just enjoy it and do what I can.

“I enjoyed it and I have to keep doing that because the Premier League is the best experience you can have as a darts player and I want to enjoy every moment on that stage.”

The night’s other game saw Phil Taylor romp past Stephen Bunting 7-1 with a clinical display as the local favourite, who hails from St Helens, endured a nightmare.

Taylor, aided by finishes of 98 and 80, took the first five legs without reply before Bunting hit back on tops in leg six, but checkouts of 121 and 151 saw the six-time Premier League champion mercilessly wrap up a comprehensive win.

“Stephen didn’t play as well as he can, and maybe the occasion of playing in Liverpool got to him a little bit because he’s a lot better player than he showed tonight,” said Taylor.

“When he got a leg back I could see he was thinking about the comeback, but the 121 killed him and I finished it off well from there. It’s a tough game but this is just one week for Stephen.

“You don’t win the Premier League in one week and you don’t lose it in a week either, but it’s good to get another two points in the bag.”

* Jan Molby secured a £5,000 donation for Radio City’s Cash For Kids charity after defeating Eric Bristow 2-1 in a special challenge match at the Echo arena in Liverpool on Thursday.

Former Danish international footballer Molby, who made over 200 appearances for Liverpool in a 12-year career at Anfield, took to the stage ahead of the Betway Premier League in Liverpool to take on the five-time World Champion.

The best-of-three leg match was televised live by TV3, the Danish broadcaster under the Viasat banner who screen PDC tournaments, with a £5,000 donation on offer to the winner’s charity.

Despite being a rookie on the big darts stage, Molby won the game’s opening leg before Bristow hit back to level by landing double top.

The deciding leg saw Bristow unable to finish 134, and Molby stepped in to finish 95 by hitting treble 19, a double three – when aiming for double 19 – and double 16.

The Betway Premier League continues next Thursday with Week Four at the Odyssey Arena in Belfast, with tickets still available by calling 028 9073 9074 or online via www.odysseyarena.com.
Betway Premier League
Night Three, Thursday February 19
Echo Arena, Liverpool 

James Wade 6-6 Dave Chisnall
Peter Wright 6-6 Raymond van Barneveld
Phil Taylor 7-1 Stephen Bunting
Michael van Gerwen 7-4 Gary Anderson
Adrian Lewis 6-6 Kim Huybrechts

All games are the best of 12 legs

LEAGUE TABLE

After Week Three

P

W

D

L

Legs +/-

Pts

Michael van Gerwen

3

3

0

0

+11

6

Dave Chisnall

3

2

1

0

+8

5

Phil Taylor

3

2

0

1

+9

4

James Wade

3

1

2

0

+5

4

Gary Anderson

3

2

0

1

+5

4

Adrian Lewis

3

1

1

1

+1

3

Raymond van Barneveld

3

0

1

2

-8

1

Kim Huybrechts

3

0

1

2

-9

1

Stephen Bunting

3

0

1

2

-10

1

Peter Wright

3

0

1

2

-12

1

MATCH INFORMATION
James Wade v Dave Chisnall 

0-1 – Chisnall breaks throw in the opening leg by finishing 60 on tops.
0-2 – Chisnall misses two darts at double eight, but Wade is unable to take out 78 as the St Helens ace returns on double eight to move two legs up.
1-2 – A golden chance to win a third successive leg slips away for Chisnall, who misses six darts at doubles across three visits to punish Wade, before the left-hander posts double five to finally get off the mark.
2-2 – Wade misses double 14 and seven to finish 88, but returns on double two to level the game with a break of throw.
3-2 – Wade fires in a 165 score to leave 40, before finishing double ten to move ahead.
3-3 – Chisnall opens with two 180s to set up a nine-darter opportunity, and lands a seventh treble 20 before missing out on a treble 19 for the 141 finish – but he returns to take out tops for an 11-darter to level.
3-4 – Both players miss the bull before Chisnall returns to finish double eight for a break of throw.
4-4 – Wade takes out 64 on tops as he breaks back.
5-4 – Wade finishes 72 in two darts on double 12 as he edges back ahead.
5-5 – Chisnall fires in his third 180 of the game before landing double 18 to square the contest once more.
6-5 – Wade secures at least a point in style with a brilliant 142 checkout.
6-6 – Chisnall lands his fourth 180 before finishing 63 for a 14-darter to snatch a draw.

Match Stats

James Wade 6-6 Dave Chisnall
17 100+ 17
12 140+ 6
0 170+ 0
0 180 4
90.19 Average 93.27
142 High Finish 63
2 Breaks of Throw 2
6/20 – 30% Checkout % 6/22 – 27%

Peter Wright v Raymond van Barneveld 
0-1 – van Barneveld lands a 180 before finishing 80 on tops to break in the opening leg.
0-2 – The Dutchman finishes double 16 to move two legs up.
1-2 – van Barneveld posts another 180, but misses double 16 for a 12-darter as Wright takes out a superb 147 to hit back.
1-3 – The reigning Premier League champion lands another maximum before finishing 81 for an 11-darter to move two legs up again.
1-4 – The Dutchman fires in his fourth 180 before taking out 89 for a 12-darter – maintaining an average above 118 as he breaks throw once more.
1-5 – Wright misses double 16 to finish 103, and van Barneveld capitalises by taking out 54 on tops.
2-5 – The pair trade 180s before Wright takes out 56 on tops to hit back.
3-5 – Wright fires in his second maximum of the night before finishing 121 on the bull to break and hit back to trail by just two legs.
3-6 – Wright misses the bull to take out 92, and van Barneveld returns to take out 41 on double 16 to secure at least a point.
4-6 – Wright finishes 94 in two darts with a treble 18, double top combination.
5-6 – Wright misses double eight to finish 133, but returns to hit double four with his third dart as he sends the game into a decider.
6-6 – Wright lands his third 180 of the game and then posts a 180 to be first to a finish, leaving 81 after nine darts before snatching a draw by landing double six for a 14-darter.

Match Stats

Peter Wright 6-6 Raymond van Barneveld
10 100+ 20
9 140+ 8
0 170+ 0
3 180 5
93.45 Average 102.94
147 High Finish 89
3 Breaks of Throw 3
6/15 – 40% Checkout % 6/9 – 67%

Phil Taylor v Stephen Bunting 
1-0 – Taylor finishes 98 on double 12 to win the opening leg.
2-0 – Taylor lands a 180 to leave 81 after nine darts, before finishing double eight to break throw – after Bunting misses a single 20 to leave tops.
3-0 – Taylor finishes double eight as he moves three legs up.
4-0 – Bunting leaves 36 with a 140 score – but Taylor finishes 80 on tops to break throw once again.
5-0 – Double five gives Taylor a five-leg lead.
5-1 – Bunting lands double top to win his first leg of the game.
6-1 – Bunting fires in a 180 and then scores 171 to leave 50 – only to watch Taylor finish 121 on double 14 for a killer blow.
7-1 – Taylor takes out 151 on tops to complete a comprehensive win, ending with a 100.03 average.

Match Stats

Phil Taylor 7-1 Stephen Bunting
11 100+ 3
9 140+ 3
0 170+ 1
1 180 1
100.03 Average 84.62
151 High Finish 40
3 Breaks of Throw 0
7/14 – 50% Checkout % 1/3 – 33%

Michael van Gerwen v Gary Anderson 
0-1 – The pair trade 180s in the opening leg, with Anderson’s three missed doubles matched by a trio of misses from van Gerwen before the World Champion returns on double four to break throw immediately.
0-2 – van Gerwen misses the bull for a 124 finish, and Anderson lands double 19 with his third dart at the bed to move two legs up.
1-2 – Double 18 sees van Gerwen hit back to win his first leg of the game.
1-3 – The pair again trade 180s, but van Gerwen is punished for three missed doubles – at the bull, double eight and double four – as Anderson lands double one to regain his two-leg lead.
2-3 – Anderson misses double top and ten, and van Gerwen steps in to finish double 16 as he again reduces the gap.
3-3 – Anderson misses three darts at double 19, and van Gerwen breaks throw on tops to level the contest.
4-3 – van Gerwen lands double 16 as he moves ahead for the first time.
5-3 – Anderson pays the price for five more missed doubles, as van Gerwen breaks to win a fourth straight leg by landing double ten.
6-3 – Anderson lands his fourth 180, but misses double 19 once more as van Gerwen finishes tops to secure a point.
6-4 – Anderson regains his range by finishing 68 on tops to hit back.
7-4 – van Gerwen lands a 180 to leave 24, and when Anderson misses the bull he steps in to finish double 12 and seal the win.

Match Stats

Michael van Gerwen 7-4 Gary Anderson
13 100+ 17
10 140+ 5
0 170+ 0
4 180 5
101.14 Average 95.74
56 High Finish 68
2 Breaks of Throw 1
7/18 – 39% Checkout % 4/27 – 15%

Adrian Lewis v Kim Huybrechts 
0-1 – Lewis lands a 180, but Huybrechts breaks throw on double ten.
1-1 – Lewis levels by hitting double ten to break back.
2-1 – Lewis fires in his second maximum before taking out 47 – at the second time of asking – to move ahead.
2-2 – Lewis lands a 177 but misses three darts at doubles, allowing Huybrechts in on double 16 to leve.
3-2 – Double ten sees Lewis edge back ahead.
3-3 – Huybrechts hits two 180s and seven perfect darts, and although a nine-darter goes begging the Belgian defies a 180 in reply from Lewis to land double eight.
4-3 – Huybrechts fires in his third 180 of the game, but Lewis regains the lead on tops.
4-4 – Lewis misses three darts at doubles to break, and Huybrechts finishes double two to level again.
5-4 – Huybrechts posts a fourth maximum, but can only watch on as Lewis finishes 72 on tops to move back ahead.
5-5 – Double top sees Huybrechts draw level again.
6-5 – Lewis lands a 180, his fourth, before finishing 80 to secure a point.
6-6 – Huybrechts finishes 62 in two darts on double 16 to claim his first point of the season with a draw.

Match Stats

Adrian Lewis 6-6 Kim Huybrechts
14 100+ 10
8 140+ 6
1 170+ 0
4 180 4
92.16 Average 88.98
80 High Finish 62
1 Breaks of Throw 1
6/17 – 35% Checkout % 6/14 – 43%

Phil Taylor v Adrian Lewis (7-2) Week 2 Premier League

February 21st, 2015

Gary Anderson v Peter Wright (7-1) 

Peter Wright's new darts couldn't save him
Peter Wright’s new darts couldn’t save him (Pic Lawrence Lustig/PDC)

A second week of delicious darting duels got underway in a bouncing Bournemouth with a match-up between the two Highland flingers in the competition, Gary Anderson and Peter Wright, and it was the phenomenal finishing of the newly crowned World Champ that enabled him to inflict a second consecutive 7-1 mauling upon his fellow Scot.

Ever a persistent switcher of his equipment, Wright opted to arrow off with new darts and it initially seemed to do the trick as he landed a 56 checkout to take leg one and although there was to be an upturn in his performance levels throughout, there was to be no upturn in fortunes for Snakebite as he failed to win another leg, more due to the magnificence of Scotland’s premier darter as he sealed two more points, starting off by firing in a 126 in response and then a 121 to break and steal a march.

A third consecutive ton plus finish was millimetres away for Ando when he missed the bull for a 124 but two more duly followed, firstly when he broke with a 100 in leg five to lead 4-1 and then completed a hat-trick of breaks with a 124 to make it 6-1, an 11-darter completed with a 92 outshot enabling him to take the leg previous. A true display of a champion was capped off with a tremendous tops, maintaining his perfect start and averaging 107.

Michael van Gerwen v Stephen Bunting (7-3)

A deluge of Dutch darting genius from Michael Gerwen gave him another comfortable win over another debutant, Stephen Bunting, who try as he might could do nothing to stop the Green Machine from posting a 7-3 success, who at times threw almost god-like arras.

Bouyed by his two victories at the weekend in the UK Open qualifiers, he was firmly in the zone the moment ‘game on’ was called, hitting a 32 to hold in leg one, a 12-darter in leg two to take the throw and a further 32 to race into a 3-0 lead. It could have been 4-0 as he pummeled the triple 20 and 19 beds, missing tops to break, Bunting breathing a sigh of relief as he took out 50 to notch a leg on the board. Frustrated at his miss, the nine-time major winner held for a 4-1 advantage and was only too pleased to see the former BDO world champion fire two double attempts wide of the outer ring, breaking to go to within one leg of a point at 5-1.

The Bullet gave it his best shot to stay in the contest, winning the next two legs with checkouts of 87 and 24, but there was no putting the brakes on the van Gerwen charge who followed up a tops in leg nine with a sublime 138 to punish two more stray doubles for Bunting and turn one point into two.

Phil Taylor v Adrian Lewis (7-2)

Phil Taylor with board in Bournemouth
Phil Taylor put on a masterclass last night (Pic Lustig/PDC)

The Stokies squared off and once again the master outdid his pupil as despite coming into the match as an underdog in the eyes of some, Phil Taylor did a number on Adrian Lewis, beating him convincingly 7-2, further evidence that you write the 16-time world champion off at your peril.

Both players failed to hold their throws in the first two legs, the Power polishing off a 65 after three missed doubles for Lewis, Jackpot returning the favour immediately by breaking with a 47. The younger man’s pinpoint accuracy then helping him hit tops before a double 6 for Phil brought things back level. An average of 115+ at that moment was always going to be difficult for Lewis to sustain but it dipped fairly dramatically from the conclusion of leg four and Phil’s stayed steady, breaking with a 48 and 40 in legs five and seven, interjected by a 32, leaving him with clear headway at 5-2.

Adrian’s last hope of salvaging any points came in leg eight when he aimed for a 127 and skewed his last dart to take it out, Taylor breaking his darting heart by hitting 57 and then earning a final break and welcome two points thanks to a 66, with the added bonus of a 108 average.

James Wade v Kim Huybrechts (7-2)

There have been few more consistent performers in the Premier League over the years than James Wade and it was a typically clinical effort from the Machine that blew away the Hurricane Kim Huybrechts 7-2 as the Belgian continues to try to acclimatise to life amongst the elite.

Ever trusty on tops. it was a double 20 that got Wade winning leg one and also leg two as he took out 80 after four errant darts at a double for Huybrechts the younger. A 72 made it three zip to James but the new boy pocketed leg four with a 45 despite missing the centre red for a 127. In the groove and in the mood, Wadey did what Kim failed to do in the previous leg and hit a ton plus checkout, a stupendous 143, sustaining the momemtum to break in leg six courtesy of a 64 and hold with a half century outshot to nab a point at 6-1 up.

A much needed max set Kim up for a tilt at leg eight which he duly took but he’d left himself with too much to do as Wade showed he was top man, closing out the match with another double 20 and likewise to the winners of the previous matches tonight, recording a very healthy three-figure average, a superb 104.

Dave Chisnall v Raymond van Barneveld (7-5)

Dave Chisnall wins in Bournemouth
Dave Chisnall wins in Bournemouth (Pic Lawrence Lustig/PDC)

Disastrous doubling left Barney barmy as his weak finishing allowed Dave Chisnall to overcome the Dutch darting dynamo 7-5 from 5-4 down, his first win over Raymond van Barneveld since 2012 to give him a further two points and leave the five-time world champion pointless.

Neither player gave their opponent chance to break throw in the first three legs, a 12-darter including two 180’s for Chisnall the main highlight as he headed the clash 2-1. The doubling jitters started for Barney in leg four as he missed three doubles but got away with it and held, and again in leg seven, this time when two darts at 76 would have given him a crucial break to lead 4-3, Chizzy punishing him by taking it from under his nose with a 101. Still, a 52 got Raymond back to all-square.

He then looked to be in pole position for the points, stepping up to the oche to hit double 16 and break for a 5-4 advantage after Dave’s four darting doubles missed their targets, only for the headshaking to start as RVB missed six efforts at a double himself, a last gasp dart for the St Helens man at double 5 giving him an instant break back. Chisnall’s doubling radar was far from sound either as he neglected to take three leg winning opportunities for a priceless point, thankfully for him the former postman failed to deliver four darts in the requisite doubles, gifting Dave that point.

An 87 went begging for Chizzy on two occasions and you thought that perhaps a first drawn game of the night was on the cards, however Barney couldn’t get down to a finish and third dart in hand Dave sounded the death knell.

Betway Premier League
Night Two, Thursday February 12
BIC, Bournemouth 

Peter Wright 1-7 Gary Anderson
Michael van Gerwen 7-3 Stephen Bunting
Adrian Lewis 2-7 Phil Taylor
James Wade 7-2 Kim Huybrechts
Dave Chisnall 7-5 Raymond van Barneveld

Gary Anderson 7-5 Phil Taylor PREMIER LEAGUE OPENER

February 21st, 2015

ANDERSON EDGES TAYLOR IN BETWAY PREMIER LEAGUE OPENER

GARY ANDERSON kicked off the new Betway Premier League season with a dramatic 7-5 win over Phil Taylor in front of an amazing 11,200 fans in Leeds on Thursday night, as Adrian Lewis lit up the tournament with a 113.80 average in a stunning defeat of Raymond van Barneveld.

World Champion Anderson repeated his success over Taylor at Alexandra Palace over the shorter Premier League format, although the game also went the distance as the Scot opened the season in style.

Taylor ended the game with the higher average, but paid for missing double top to snatch a draw in the deciding leg – which added to one earlier missed double to break Anderson’s throw as the six-time Premier League winner fell to a narrow loss.

“I’m delighted to have got the win,” said Anderson. “I was looking at a draw going into the final leg but I managed to pinch it and it’s a bonus for me.

“Maybe it was a bit of a steal in the end but that wasn’t the real Phil tonight and I took advantage. Hopefully I will play better next week but this is a good start.”

World number four Adrian Lewis – the 2011 Premier League runner-up – made a sensational start to the season with his highest-ever average in a televised game as he overcame reigning champion van Barneveld 7-1.

Lewis had lost to the Dutchman in the World Championship just over a month ago, but was in sublime form to kick off the season with the fourth highest average in Premier League history.

“When I lost to Raymond in the World Championship I missed too many doubles and let him in, and I’ve been thinking about that game every day since,” admitted Lewis.

“I knew I was in great form and I’ve shown it tonight, and a 7-1 win for me is a great start to the season. There was a quality atmosphere from the moment we walked out, and it gave me a great feeling.”

2013 Premier League champion Michael van Gerwen raced to a 7-3 win over Kim Huybrechts as he averaged an impressive 107.72 against the Belgian debutant to follow up last weekend’s Masters win with another classy display.

Van Gerwen took an early 3-1 lead, and though Huybrechts reduced the gap to one leg it was the Dutchman who took three legs in a row in mid-game to pull clear before sealing victory with a 145 checkout.

“To win 7-3 in my first game of the Premier League is very good and I played quite well,” said van Gerwen. “I didn’t expect to play this well but I’m very happy with my form, and I finished well at the right time,

“It was Kim’s debut and it was difficult for him, but when you’re on this stage you need to be prepared for everything. He’s a good player and he’ll be back.

“The crowd were amazing and I had goosebumps. That makes you feel incredible and it means a lot to me, and I think it made me play better.

“I want to keep this form for the rest of the Premier League. I hope I can win this tournament again, but there’s a long way to go in the season, and you just need to try and play well every week – but I’m enjoying myself.”

Dave Chisnall reeled off six successive legs as he swept to a 7-1 win over Peter Wright, with the St Helens ace producing the heavier scoring and clinical finishing as he took victory in the season’s opening fixture.

“I’m delighted,” said Chisnall. “Peter didn’t play as well as he can but I outscored him and my finishing was good and I was happy with that.

“The atmosphere was fantastic but I wasn’t nervous. It’s a brilliant venue and I had goosebumps everywhere!”

The night’s other game saw debutant Stephen Bunting hit back from 6-4 down to grab a draw with 2009 Premier League champion James Wade, who took a point on his return to the event.

Wade twice led by two legs – at 3-1 and 6-4 – but saw Bunting hit back on both occasions before the newcomer finished double four and 68 in the last two legs to share the spoils.

“It was the most nervous I’ve ever been in the Premier League but I loved every minute of it,” said Wade following his Premier League return.

“I thought Stephen was going to steamroller me at the beginning but I hung in there, hit a few scores and towards the end I thought I was going to win.

“Perhaps we show each other too much and maybe it was hard to close out the game, but a draw could have been a much worse start for me.”

Former Lakeside Champion Bunting admitted: “It feels like a win for me to be honest. James is a fantastic player and I always know I’m in for a tough match when I play him, so I’m happy to get a point on the board.

“The venue was absolutely amazing – the biggest crowd I’ve ever played in front of before was about 4,000 in Sydney, so it’s fantastic to play in front of a crowd like that and I can’t wait for the rest of the Premier League now.”

The £700,000 tournament continues with Week Two at the BIC in Bournemouth next Thursday, with the games including the all-Stoke clash between Taylor and Lewis and van Gerwen’s meeting with Bunting.

Betway Premier League
Night One, Thursday February 5
First Direct Arena, Leeds
Dave Chisnall 7-1 Peter Wright
Raymond van Barneveld 1-7 Adrian Lewis
Kim Huybrechts 3-7 Michael van Gerwen
Gary Anderson 7-5 Phil Taylor
Stephen Bunting 6-6 James Wade

MATCH INFORMATION
Dave Chisnall v Peter Wright
1-0 – Chisnall holds throw to win the opening leg of the new season.
1-1 – Wright lands a 180 before hitting double top to level.
2-1 – Chisnall finishes 24 to move back ahead.
3-1 – Chisnall posts a 180 before breaking throw on double five.
4-1 – Chisnall suffers double trouble, but has enough cushion to take the leg on double one.
5-1 – Chisnall finishes 82 on double eight for another break of throw and a fourth successive leg.
6-1 – Wright fires home his second 180, but Chisnall finishes 100 on tops to ensure at least a point from the game.
7-1 – Chisnall completes victory in style with an 87 finish for an 11-darter.

Raymond van Barneveld v Adrian Lewis
0-1 – van Barneveld misses two darts at doubles, allowing Lewis in to finish tops for the opening leg.
0-2 – van Barneveld opens with a 180, but Lewis replies with a maximum before finishing 97 for an 11-darter.
1-2 – Lewis kicks off the leg with a maximum, but misses the bull to finish 127 to allow the Dutchman in to take out double 16.
1-3 – Lewis again opens with a 180, and double eight sees him regain his cushion.
1-4 – Lewis lands tops to move three legs clear of his rival.
1-5 – The Stoke star opens with another maximum as he hits five perfect treble 20s, before taking the leg on tops – maintaining his average at 111.
1-6 – Lewis secures a minimum of a point by taking out 138 on double nine.
1-7 – Lewis fires in yet another maximum before finishing 47 for another 11-darter, completing a brilliant win with a 113.80 average – his highest in a televised game and the fourth highest in Premier League history.

Kim Huybrechts v Michael van Gerwen
0-1 – Double ten sees van Gerwen break in the opening leg.
0-2 – Huybrechts misses double 12 to break back as van Gerwen returns on double six to move two legs up.
1-2 – Double ten sees Huybrechts get off the mark.
1-3 – van Gerwen holds throw to regain his two-leg cushion.
2-3 – A 78 finish for Huybrechts sees the Belgian hit back.
2-4 – van Gerwen finishes 82 with a bullseye, double 16 combination.
2-5 – Huybrechts misses three darts at doubles 16 and eight, and van Gerwen capitalises by finishing 79 on double 11.
2-6 – The world number one finishes 87 for an 11-darter to secure a minimum of a draw.
3-6 – Double six sees Huybrechts win his third leg of the game, keeping alive his hopes of grabbing a point.
3-7 – van Gerwen opens with a 180 before sealing a brilliant victory with a 145 finish, ending with a 107.72 average.

Gary Anderson v Phil Taylor
1-0 – Double ten gives Anderson the opening leg.
1-1 – Taylor levels by finishing 82 on tops.
2-1 – Anderson misses two darts at double top, but returns to pin double five to move back ahead.
2-2 – Taylor lands a 180 before double eight levels.
3-2 – Anderson finishes double ten once more as he edges back ahead.
3-3 – Anderson misses his chance to break, and Taylor finishes double 15 to square the game.
4-3 – Taylor lands two 180s in the leg, but Anderson finishes the bull for a 12-darter to move back in front.
4-4 – Taylor finishes double 16 for a 13-darter to hit back.
5-4 – Anderson lands a 180 but gives Taylor a chance to break on a 145 finish – but the 16-time World Champion misses double 14 to complete the combination, and the Scot returns on double six.
5-5 – Taylor lands a 174 score before finishing double 16 to continue the tight affair.
6-5 – Anderson seals at least a point by finishing double top with his third dart.
7-5 – Anderson opens with a 180 but looks to have blown his chance for the match with a missed double nine for a 138 finish – but Taylor misses tops to secure a draw, allowing his rival back in on double four to seal victory.

Stephen Bunting v James Wade
1-0 – Bunting misses the bull for a 170 finish, but settles any debut nerves on double eight.
1-1 – Bunting lands a 180 but is denied the chance to break throw by a 101 finish from Wade.
1-2 – Wade misses the bull to finish 121, but Bunting misses three darts at doubles as the former champion returns to break on double ten.
1-3 – Bunting’s misses are punished as Wade moves two legs clear.
2-3 – Bunting fires in a 177 before finishing double 16 to hit back.
3-3 – Bunting levels with a break of throw in a fine leg, scoring 171 to leave 94 before taking out the combination on double six.
4-3 – Tops moves Bunting back ahead.
4-4 – Bunting opens with a 180 and lands a 171, only to miss three darts at double four as Wade returns on double ten to level.
4-5 – Bunting misses double 11 for a 142 finish, and Wade breaks on tops to move himself back into the lead.
4-6 – Wade seals a minimum of a point on double ten, after the pair trade 180s.
5-6 – Bunting posts another 171 score, and needs the cushion as he returns from six misseed doubles on double four to take the game into a deciding leg.
6-6 – Bunting finishes 68 to snatch a point on double 16 with his second break of throw of the game.

ANDERSON V TAYLOR TO OPEN PREMIER LEAGUE SEASON – LEEDS

January 12th, 2015

BETWAY PREMIER LEAGUE FIXTURES CONFIRMED – ANDERSON-TAYLOR REMATCH TO OPEN SEASON IN LEEDS

THE fixtures for the opening nine weeks of the Betway Premier League have been confirmed, with Gary Anderson and Phil Taylor to meet in a rematch of the World Championship final on the opening league night in Leeds on Thursday February 5.

The ten stars of the Betway Premier League will face each other once over the opening nine weeks of the league season in a round-robin format, before the bottom two players are eliminated on “Judgement Night” in Manchester.

The season will kick off at the First Direct Arena in Leeds on February 5, live on Sky Sports HD, and the five matches on the night will include the rematch of Sunday’s classic World Championship final, which saw Anderson edge out Taylor for the title.

Dave Chisnall’s clash with Peter Wright will kick off the season, before reigning Premier League champion Raymond van Barneveld takes on Adrian Lewis – who landed a nine-darter when the pair met in the World Championship recently.

Debutant Kim Huybrechts will face world number one Michael van Gerwen in the night’s third clash – with the Belgian having landed a nine-darter when they clashed in November’s Grand Slam of Darts – before Anderson, the 2011 Premier League champion, takes on six-time winner Taylor.

The night’s final game in Leeds will see 2009 Premier League champion James Wade make his Premier League return against debutant Stephen Bunting, the former Lakeside Champion who comes into the elite ten-player event following a superb first year on the PDC circuit.

The second league night will see the tournament return for a tenth time to the BIC in Bournemouth, the Premier League’s longest-running venue, with the games including the all-Scottish clash between Wright and Anderson and the all-Stoke battle between Lewis and Taylor.

St Helens duo Chisnall and Bunting will take to the stage at the Echo Arena in Liverpool on Night Three as they face former champions Wade and Taylor respectively, while Anderson takes on van Gerwen in another tasty clash.

The visit to Belfast on February 26 will include the eagerly-awaited battle between van Gerwen and Lewis, while Bunting will get the chance to avenge his recent World Championship defeat to van Barneveld.

Exciting duo Huybrechts and Chisnall will also meet in Belfast, while Anderson takes on Wade in a battle of former Premier League champions and Taylor takes on Wright.

The return to Exeter’s Westpoint Arena on March 5 will open as Holland’s van Barneveld takes on Belgium’s Huybrechts before Wade meets Taylor, Lewis plays Bunting and Chisnall takes on Anderson either side of the rematch of the 2014 World Championship final between van Gerwen and Wright.

The St Helens rivals, Bunting and Chisnall, face off on Night Six in Nottingham, while the world’s top two players, van Gerwen and Taylor, meet in a repeat of the 2013 Premier League final.

The night also features a rematch of the 2011 Premier League final between Anderson and Lewis, while van Barneveld plays Wade and Huybrechts meets Wright.

World Champion Anderson returns to home soil in Scotland for Night Seven in Glasgow on March 19, as he takes on Belgian ace Huybrechts, while Lothian-born Wright will play Stephen Bunting at The SSE Hydro.

Taylor and van Barneveld will renew their rivalry in another Glasgow fixture, with Wade meeting Lewis and Chisnall taking on van Gerwen.

The Premier League then crosses the Irish Sea for Night Eight, with the five games at Dublin’s 3Arena including the all-Dutch rematch of last year’s final between van Barneveld and van Gerwen.

The other fixtures in Dublin see Taylor meet Huybrechts, Anderson face Bunting, Wright play Wade and Lewis taking on Chisnall.

Judgement Night, the season’s ninth league night, will see the stars head to Manchester for the decisive final fixtures before the bottom two players are eliminated.

World Champion Anderson will take on Premier League champion van Barneveld in Manchester, with Taylor taking on Chisnall in a repeat of November’s Grand Slam final, while Lewis plays Wright, Bunting meets Huybrechts and van Gerwen faces Wade.

Following Judgement Night, the remaining eight players face each other once more over the remaining six league nights, before the top four players progress to the Play-Offs at The O2 in London on Thursday May 21.

Betway Premier League Fixtures
Night One, Thursday February 5
First Direct Arena, Leeds
Dave Chisnall v Peter Wright
Raymond van Barneveld v Adrian Lewis
Kim Huybrechts v Michael van Gerwen
Gary Anderson v Phil Taylor
Stephen Bunting v James Wade
Tickets: 0844 248 1585 orwww.firstdirectarena.com

Night Two, Thursday February 12
BIC, Bournemouth
Peter Wright v Gary Anderson
Michael van Gerwen v Stephen Bunting
Adrian Lewis v Phil Taylor
James Wade v Kim Huybrechts
Dave Chisnall v Raymond van Barneveld
Tickets: 0844 576 3000 orwww.bhlivetickets.co.uk

Night Three, Thursday February 19
Echo Arena, Liverpool
James Wade v Dave Chisnall
Peter Wright v Raymond van Barneveld
Phil Taylor v Stephen Bunting
Michael van Gerwen v Gary Anderson
Adrian Lewis v Kim Huybrechts
Tickets: 0844 8000 400 or www.echoarena.com

Night Four, Thursday February 26
Odyssey Arena, Belfast
Kim Huybrechts v Dave Chisnall
Gary Anderson v James Wade
Michael van Gerwen v Adrian Lewis
Stephen Bunting v Raymond van Barneveld
Phil Taylor v Peter Wright
Tickets: 028 9073 9074 or www odysseyarena.com

Night Five, Thursday March 5
Westpoint Arena, Exeter
Raymond van Barneveld v Kim Huybrechts
James Wade v Phil Taylor
Adrian Lewis v Stephen Bunting
Peter Wright v Michael van Gerwen
Dave Chisnall v Gary Anderson
Tickets: 08444 99 99 55 or www.ticketzone.co.uk

Night Six, Thursday March 12
Capital FM Arena, Nottingham
Stephen Bunting v Dave Chisnall
Raymond van Barneveld v James Wade
Phil Taylor v Michael van Gerwen
Gary Anderson v Adrian Lewis
Kim Huybrechts v Peter Wright
Tickets: 0843 373 3000 orwww.capitalfmarena.com

Night Seven, Thursday March 19
The SSE Hydro, Glasgow
James Wade v Adrian Lewis
Peter Wright v Stephen Bunting
Raymond van Barneveld v Phil Taylor
Kim Huybrechts v Gary Anderson
Dave Chisnall v Michael van Gerwen
Tickets: 0844 395 4000 or www.ticketSOUP.com

Night Eight, Thursday March 26
3Arena, Dublin
Adrian Lewis v Dave Chisnall
Gary Anderson v Stephen Bunting
Peter Wright v James Wade
Michael van Gerwen v Raymond van Barneveld
Phil Taylor v Kim Huybrechts
Tickets: 0818 719 3000 (Ire), 0844 8472 455 (UK) or www.ticketmaster.ie

Judgement Night, Thursday April 2
The Manchester Arena
Michael van Gerwen v James Wade
Stephen Bunting v Kim Huybrechts
Gary Anderson v Raymond van Barneveld
Phil Taylor v Dave Chisnall
Adrian Lewis v Peter Wright
Tickets: 0844 847 8000 or www.eventim.co.uk

Following Week Nine, the bottom two players from the league table are eliminated. Revised fixtures for Weeks Ten-15 will be announced following Week Nine at www.pdc.tv, with the remaining eight players facing each other once more during the final six league nights.

Night Ten, Thursday April 9
Motorpoint Arena, Sheffield
Tickets: 0114 256 5656 orwww.motorpointarenasheffield.co.uk

Night 11, Thursday April 16
GE Oil & GAs Arena, Aberdeen
Tickets: 08444 77 9000 orwww.ticketmaster.co.uk/aecc

Night 12, Thursday April 23
Motorpoint Arena, Cardiff
Tickets: Sold Out

Night 13, Thursday April 30
The Barclaycard Arena, Birmingham
Tickets: 0844 338 8000 or www theticketfactory.com

Night 14, Thursday May 7
Metro Radio Arena, Newcastle
Tickets: 08444 93 6666 or www.eventim.co.uk

Night 15, Thursday May 14
The Brighton Centre
Tickets: 0844 847 1515 or www.ticketmaster.co.uk

Play-Offs, Thursday May 21
The O2, London
Tickets: 0844 856 0202 or www.axs.com

For full ticket information and Terms & Conditions, visit www.pdc.tv/tickets.

Tournament Format
The ten players will face each other once during the opening nine weeks. Following Week Nine, the bottom two players from the league table will be eliminated. From Weeks Ten-15, the remaining eight players will play each other once again. Following Week 15, the top four players will progress to the Play-Offs.

All league fixtures will be the best of 12 legs of 501. Once a player reaches seven legs, they have won the game and no further legs will be played.

Two points will be awarded for a win, one point will be awarded for a six-all draw and no points will be awarded for a defeat.

The player named on the left in the fixture will throw first in the opening leg of each game. This will be reversed in the second meeting (where applicable).

Should players be tied on points in the league table, Leg Difference will be the first deciding factor. If this is also a tie, then Legs Won Against Throw will be the next deciding factor, and any further tie would be split by a comparison of the relevant players’ three-dart tournament average at that stage.

All nights will begin at 7pm and be screened live on Sky Sports HD.

Latest News

Phil Taylor v Stephen Bunting (7-1) Week 3 Premier League

February 21st, 2015

MICHAEL VAN GERWEN moved a point clear at the top of the Betway Premier League table with a 7-4 win over World Champion Gary Anderson on Thursday, as Stephen Bunting suffered disappointment in Liverpool with a 7-1 reverse to Phil Taylor.

Van Gerwen ended Anderson’s winning start to the season as he punished the Scot for 23 missed doubles during their contest.

Although the game failed to live up to the standard of Sunday’s German Darts Championship final – when van Gerwen averaged almost 118 – it carried high drama throughout as Anderson saw a 3-1 lead over the world number one slip away.

Van Gerwen took five straight legs as he moved 6-3 up, and though Anderson hit back with a 68 finish it was the Dutchman who won the 11th leg, on double 12, to seal his third win of the season.

“There was a lot of pressure tonight because one of us was going to be top of the league with a win so you know you can’t afford any mistakes, and I’m glad I didn’t make as many as Gary,” said van Gerwen.

“His scoring was a bit better than mine, but he didn’t take advantage. I can’t always be at my best but to get the win was the most important thing.

“The crowd were fantastic in a big venue and I enjoyed this win. I feel good and this will give me more confidence.”

Dave Chisnall and James Wade join van Gerwen in being unbeaten after three weeks, after they shared the points with a six-all draw in front of over 7,000 fans in Liverpool.

Chisnall led 2-0 only to allow Wade back into the match before a 142 checkout secured the 2009 Premier League champion a point, but the St Helens ace took the game’s final leg with a 14-darter to claim a share of the spoils.

“I think it was the right result but I gave a point away,” said Wade. “I’ll take the draw and move on from here.

“The 142 was great and those type of shots are going in okay, but then I got a little bit lazy in the last leg. I think we were both under par throughout the game, but I’ll take a draw when I’m not playing so well.”

Chisnall said: “James was steady and he finished well, so I’ll take a point from that.

“I didn’t feel nervous but it was one of those nights where the darts didn’t go as well as I wanted them to and neither of us scored as well as we wanted to.

“Early on I could have gone 3-0 up, and that’s where the game changed. The 142 to put him 6-5 up was a big shot as well because if he didn’t hit that I probably would have won the game.”

Two other games on the night ended in a stalemate, as Kim Huybrechts denied Adrian Lewis a win from their game and Peter Wright came from 5-1 down to claim a draw with reigning Premier League champion Raymond van Barneveld.

Van Barneveld had seemed set to storm to victory when he romped into a 5-1 lead with an average of 118 – only for Wright to finish 147, 124 and a key 94 as he hit back to claim his first point of the season.

“It feels like a win after coming from 5-1 down,” admitted Wright. “I had my own battle in my head tonight because I didn’t want to lose 7-1 again and I dug deep and managed to pull back into the game.

“My finishing helped me out but I should be scoring with these guys and that’s not quite happening at the moment. Hopefully that will start to come in the next few weeks, but to get a point this week is good and I’m proud of my fighting spirit.”

Belgian ace Huybrechts also picked his first point of the year, in his debut season, as he took out 62 in the deciding leg of his clash with Lewis.

“It was a weird match and it probably wasn’t the best game we’ve played but I’m happy with the point,” said Huybrechts. “The first point in your debut season is the hardest to get and I’ve got that.

“I held on and when Adrian gave me chances I took them tonight. I had put a lot of pressure on myself being in the Premier League because you want to prove you belong here, but I said that I want to just enjoy it and do what I can.

“I enjoyed it and I have to keep doing that because the Premier League is the best experience you can have as a darts player and I want to enjoy every moment on that stage.”

The night’s other game saw Phil Taylor romp past Stephen Bunting 7-1 with a clinical display as the local favourite, who hails from St Helens, endured a nightmare.

Taylor, aided by finishes of 98 and 80, took the first five legs without reply before Bunting hit back on tops in leg six, but checkouts of 121 and 151 saw the six-time Premier League champion mercilessly wrap up a comprehensive win.

“Stephen didn’t play as well as he can, and maybe the occasion of playing in Liverpool got to him a little bit because he’s a lot better player than he showed tonight,” said Taylor.

“When he got a leg back I could see he was thinking about the comeback, but the 121 killed him and I finished it off well from there. It’s a tough game but this is just one week for Stephen.

“You don’t win the Premier League in one week and you don’t lose it in a week either, but it’s good to get another two points in the bag.”

* Jan Molby secured a £5,000 donation for Radio City’s Cash For Kids charity after defeating Eric Bristow 2-1 in a special challenge match at the Echo arena in Liverpool on Thursday.

Former Danish international footballer Molby, who made over 200 appearances for Liverpool in a 12-year career at Anfield, took to the stage ahead of the Betway Premier League in Liverpool to take on the five-time World Champion.

The best-of-three leg match was televised live by TV3, the Danish broadcaster under the Viasat banner who screen PDC tournaments, with a £5,000 donation on offer to the winner’s charity.

Despite being a rookie on the big darts stage, Molby won the game’s opening leg before Bristow hit back to level by landing double top.

The deciding leg saw Bristow unable to finish 134, and Molby stepped in to finish 95 by hitting treble 19, a double three – when aiming for double 19 – and double 16.

The Betway Premier League continues next Thursday with Week Four at the Odyssey Arena in Belfast, with tickets still available by calling 028 9073 9074 or online via www.odysseyarena.com.
Betway Premier League
Night Three, Thursday February 19
Echo Arena, Liverpool 

James Wade 6-6 Dave Chisnall
Peter Wright 6-6 Raymond van Barneveld
Phil Taylor 7-1 Stephen Bunting
Michael van Gerwen 7-4 Gary Anderson
Adrian Lewis 6-6 Kim Huybrechts

All games are the best of 12 legs

LEAGUE TABLE

After Week Three

P

W

D

L

Legs +/-

Pts

Michael van Gerwen

3

3

0

0

+11

6

Dave Chisnall

3

2

1

0

+8

5

Phil Taylor

3

2

0

1

+9

4

James Wade

3

1

2

0

+5

4

Gary Anderson

3

2

0

1

+5

4

Adrian Lewis

3

1

1

1

+1

3

Raymond van Barneveld

3

0

1

2

-8

1

Kim Huybrechts

3

0

1

2

-9

1

Stephen Bunting

3

0

1

2

-10

1

Peter Wright

3

0

1

2

-12

1

MATCH INFORMATION
James Wade v Dave Chisnall 

0-1 – Chisnall breaks throw in the opening leg by finishing 60 on tops.
0-2 – Chisnall misses two darts at double eight, but Wade is unable to take out 78 as the St Helens ace returns on double eight to move two legs up.
1-2 – A golden chance to win a third successive leg slips away for Chisnall, who misses six darts at doubles across three visits to punish Wade, before the left-hander posts double five to finally get off the mark.
2-2 – Wade misses double 14 and seven to finish 88, but returns on double two to level the game with a break of throw.
3-2 – Wade fires in a 165 score to leave 40, before finishing double ten to move ahead.
3-3 – Chisnall opens with two 180s to set up a nine-darter opportunity, and lands a seventh treble 20 before missing out on a treble 19 for the 141 finish – but he returns to take out tops for an 11-darter to level.
3-4 – Both players miss the bull before Chisnall returns to finish double eight for a break of throw.
4-4 – Wade takes out 64 on tops as he breaks back.
5-4 – Wade finishes 72 in two darts on double 12 as he edges back ahead.
5-5 – Chisnall fires in his third 180 of the game before landing double 18 to square the contest once more.
6-5 – Wade secures at least a point in style with a brilliant 142 checkout.
6-6 – Chisnall lands his fourth 180 before finishing 63 for a 14-darter to snatch a draw.

Match Stats

James Wade 6-6 Dave Chisnall
17 100+ 17
12 140+ 6
0 170+ 0
0 180 4
90.19 Average 93.27
142 High Finish 63
2 Breaks of Throw 2
6/20 – 30% Checkout % 6/22 – 27%

Peter Wright v Raymond van Barneveld 
0-1 – van Barneveld lands a 180 before finishing 80 on tops to break in the opening leg.
0-2 – The Dutchman finishes double 16 to move two legs up.
1-2 – van Barneveld posts another 180, but misses double 16 for a 12-darter as Wright takes out a superb 147 to hit back.
1-3 – The reigning Premier League champion lands another maximum before finishing 81 for an 11-darter to move two legs up again.
1-4 – The Dutchman fires in his fourth 180 before taking out 89 for a 12-darter – maintaining an average above 118 as he breaks throw once more.
1-5 – Wright misses double 16 to finish 103, and van Barneveld capitalises by taking out 54 on tops.
2-5 – The pair trade 180s before Wright takes out 56 on tops to hit back.
3-5 – Wright fires in his second maximum of the night before finishing 121 on the bull to break and hit back to trail by just two legs.
3-6 – Wright misses the bull to take out 92, and van Barneveld returns to take out 41 on double 16 to secure at least a point.
4-6 – Wright finishes 94 in two darts with a treble 18, double top combination.
5-6 – Wright misses double eight to finish 133, but returns to hit double four with his third dart as he sends the game into a decider.
6-6 – Wright lands his third 180 of the game and then posts a 180 to be first to a finish, leaving 81 after nine darts before snatching a draw by landing double six for a 14-darter.

Match Stats

Peter Wright 6-6 Raymond van Barneveld
10 100+ 20
9 140+ 8
0 170+ 0
3 180 5
93.45 Average 102.94
147 High Finish 89
3 Breaks of Throw 3
6/15 – 40% Checkout % 6/9 – 67%

Phil Taylor v Stephen Bunting 
1-0 – Taylor finishes 98 on double 12 to win the opening leg.
2-0 – Taylor lands a 180 to leave 81 after nine darts, before finishing double eight to break throw – after Bunting misses a single 20 to leave tops.
3-0 – Taylor finishes double eight as he moves three legs up.
4-0 – Bunting leaves 36 with a 140 score – but Taylor finishes 80 on tops to break throw once again.
5-0 – Double five gives Taylor a five-leg lead.
5-1 – Bunting lands double top to win his first leg of the game.
6-1 – Bunting fires in a 180 and then scores 171 to leave 50 – only to watch Taylor finish 121 on double 14 for a killer blow.
7-1 – Taylor takes out 151 on tops to complete a comprehensive win, ending with a 100.03 average.

Match Stats

Phil Taylor 7-1 Stephen Bunting
11 100+ 3
9 140+ 3
0 170+ 1
1 180 1
100.03 Average 84.62
151 High Finish 40
3 Breaks of Throw 0
7/14 – 50% Checkout % 1/3 – 33%

Michael van Gerwen v Gary Anderson 
0-1 – The pair trade 180s in the opening leg, with Anderson’s three missed doubles matched by a trio of misses from van Gerwen before the World Champion returns on double four to break throw immediately.
0-2 – van Gerwen misses the bull for a 124 finish, and Anderson lands double 19 with his third dart at the bed to move two legs up.
1-2 – Double 18 sees van Gerwen hit back to win his first leg of the game.
1-3 – The pair again trade 180s, but van Gerwen is punished for three missed doubles – at the bull, double eight and double four – as Anderson lands double one to regain his two-leg lead.
2-3 – Anderson misses double top and ten, and van Gerwen steps in to finish double 16 as he again reduces the gap.
3-3 – Anderson misses three darts at double 19, and van Gerwen breaks throw on tops to level the contest.
4-3 – van Gerwen lands double 16 as he moves ahead for the first time.
5-3 – Anderson pays the price for five more missed doubles, as van Gerwen breaks to win a fourth straight leg by landing double ten.
6-3 – Anderson lands his fourth 180, but misses double 19 once more as van Gerwen finishes tops to secure a point.
6-4 – Anderson regains his range by finishing 68 on tops to hit back.
7-4 – van Gerwen lands a 180 to leave 24, and when Anderson misses the bull he steps in to finish double 12 and seal the win.

Match Stats

Michael van Gerwen 7-4 Gary Anderson
13 100+ 17
10 140+ 5
0 170+ 0
4 180 5
101.14 Average 95.74
56 High Finish 68
2 Breaks of Throw 1
7/18 – 39% Checkout % 4/27 – 15%

Adrian Lewis v Kim Huybrechts 
0-1 – Lewis lands a 180, but Huybrechts breaks throw on double ten.
1-1 – Lewis levels by hitting double ten to break back.
2-1 – Lewis fires in his second maximum before taking out 47 – at the second time of asking – to move ahead.
2-2 – Lewis lands a 177 but misses three darts at doubles, allowing Huybrechts in on double 16 to leve.
3-2 – Double ten sees Lewis edge back ahead.
3-3 – Huybrechts hits two 180s and seven perfect darts, and although a nine-darter goes begging the Belgian defies a 180 in reply from Lewis to land double eight.
4-3 – Huybrechts fires in his third 180 of the game, but Lewis regains the lead on tops.
4-4 – Lewis misses three darts at doubles to break, and Huybrechts finishes double two to level again.
5-4 – Huybrechts posts a fourth maximum, but can only watch on as Lewis finishes 72 on tops to move back ahead.
5-5 – Double top sees Huybrechts draw level again.
6-5 – Lewis lands a 180, his fourth, before finishing 80 to secure a point.
6-6 – Huybrechts finishes 62 in two darts on double 16 to claim his first point of the season with a draw.

Match Stats

Adrian Lewis 6-6 Kim Huybrechts
14 100+ 10
8 140+ 6
1 170+ 0
4 180 4
92.16 Average 88.98
80 High Finish 62
1 Breaks of Throw 1
6/17 – 35% Checkout % 6/14 – 43%

Phil Taylor v Adrian Lewis (7-2) Week 2 Premier League

February 21st, 2015

Gary Anderson v Peter Wright (7-1) 

Peter Wright's new darts couldn't save him
Peter Wright’s new darts couldn’t save him (Pic Lawrence Lustig/PDC)

A second week of delicious darting duels got underway in a bouncing Bournemouth with a match-up between the two Highland flingers in the competition, Gary Anderson and Peter Wright, and it was the phenomenal finishing of the newly crowned World Champ that enabled him to inflict a second consecutive 7-1 mauling upon his fellow Scot.

Ever a persistent switcher of his equipment, Wright opted to arrow off with new darts and it initially seemed to do the trick as he landed a 56 checkout to take leg one and although there was to be an upturn in his performance levels throughout, there was to be no upturn in fortunes for Snakebite as he failed to win another leg, more due to the magnificence of Scotland’s premier darter as he sealed two more points, starting off by firing in a 126 in response and then a 121 to break and steal a march.

A third consecutive ton plus finish was millimetres away for Ando when he missed the bull for a 124 but two more duly followed, firstly when he broke with a 100 in leg five to lead 4-1 and then completed a hat-trick of breaks with a 124 to make it 6-1, an 11-darter completed with a 92 outshot enabling him to take the leg previous. A true display of a champion was capped off with a tremendous tops, maintaining his perfect start and averaging 107.

Michael van Gerwen v Stephen Bunting (7-3)

A deluge of Dutch darting genius from Michael Gerwen gave him another comfortable win over another debutant, Stephen Bunting, who try as he might could do nothing to stop the Green Machine from posting a 7-3 success, who at times threw almost god-like arras.

Bouyed by his two victories at the weekend in the UK Open qualifiers, he was firmly in the zone the moment ‘game on’ was called, hitting a 32 to hold in leg one, a 12-darter in leg two to take the throw and a further 32 to race into a 3-0 lead. It could have been 4-0 as he pummeled the triple 20 and 19 beds, missing tops to break, Bunting breathing a sigh of relief as he took out 50 to notch a leg on the board. Frustrated at his miss, the nine-time major winner held for a 4-1 advantage and was only too pleased to see the former BDO world champion fire two double attempts wide of the outer ring, breaking to go to within one leg of a point at 5-1.

The Bullet gave it his best shot to stay in the contest, winning the next two legs with checkouts of 87 and 24, but there was no putting the brakes on the van Gerwen charge who followed up a tops in leg nine with a sublime 138 to punish two more stray doubles for Bunting and turn one point into two.

Phil Taylor v Adrian Lewis (7-2)

Phil Taylor with board in Bournemouth
Phil Taylor put on a masterclass last night (Pic Lustig/PDC)

The Stokies squared off and once again the master outdid his pupil as despite coming into the match as an underdog in the eyes of some, Phil Taylor did a number on Adrian Lewis, beating him convincingly 7-2, further evidence that you write the 16-time world champion off at your peril.

Both players failed to hold their throws in the first two legs, the Power polishing off a 65 after three missed doubles for Lewis, Jackpot returning the favour immediately by breaking with a 47. The younger man’s pinpoint accuracy then helping him hit tops before a double 6 for Phil brought things back level. An average of 115+ at that moment was always going to be difficult for Lewis to sustain but it dipped fairly dramatically from the conclusion of leg four and Phil’s stayed steady, breaking with a 48 and 40 in legs five and seven, interjected by a 32, leaving him with clear headway at 5-2.

Adrian’s last hope of salvaging any points came in leg eight when he aimed for a 127 and skewed his last dart to take it out, Taylor breaking his darting heart by hitting 57 and then earning a final break and welcome two points thanks to a 66, with the added bonus of a 108 average.

James Wade v Kim Huybrechts (7-2)

There have been few more consistent performers in the Premier League over the years than James Wade and it was a typically clinical effort from the Machine that blew away the Hurricane Kim Huybrechts 7-2 as the Belgian continues to try to acclimatise to life amongst the elite.

Ever trusty on tops. it was a double 20 that got Wade winning leg one and also leg two as he took out 80 after four errant darts at a double for Huybrechts the younger. A 72 made it three zip to James but the new boy pocketed leg four with a 45 despite missing the centre red for a 127. In the groove and in the mood, Wadey did what Kim failed to do in the previous leg and hit a ton plus checkout, a stupendous 143, sustaining the momemtum to break in leg six courtesy of a 64 and hold with a half century outshot to nab a point at 6-1 up.

A much needed max set Kim up for a tilt at leg eight which he duly took but he’d left himself with too much to do as Wade showed he was top man, closing out the match with another double 20 and likewise to the winners of the previous matches tonight, recording a very healthy three-figure average, a superb 104.

Dave Chisnall v Raymond van Barneveld (7-5)

Dave Chisnall wins in Bournemouth
Dave Chisnall wins in Bournemouth (Pic Lawrence Lustig/PDC)

Disastrous doubling left Barney barmy as his weak finishing allowed Dave Chisnall to overcome the Dutch darting dynamo 7-5 from 5-4 down, his first win over Raymond van Barneveld since 2012 to give him a further two points and leave the five-time world champion pointless.

Neither player gave their opponent chance to break throw in the first three legs, a 12-darter including two 180’s for Chisnall the main highlight as he headed the clash 2-1. The doubling jitters started for Barney in leg four as he missed three doubles but got away with it and held, and again in leg seven, this time when two darts at 76 would have given him a crucial break to lead 4-3, Chizzy punishing him by taking it from under his nose with a 101. Still, a 52 got Raymond back to all-square.

He then looked to be in pole position for the points, stepping up to the oche to hit double 16 and break for a 5-4 advantage after Dave’s four darting doubles missed their targets, only for the headshaking to start as RVB missed six efforts at a double himself, a last gasp dart for the St Helens man at double 5 giving him an instant break back. Chisnall’s doubling radar was far from sound either as he neglected to take three leg winning opportunities for a priceless point, thankfully for him the former postman failed to deliver four darts in the requisite doubles, gifting Dave that point.

An 87 went begging for Chizzy on two occasions and you thought that perhaps a first drawn game of the night was on the cards, however Barney couldn’t get down to a finish and third dart in hand Dave sounded the death knell.

Betway Premier League
Night Two, Thursday February 12
BIC, Bournemouth 

Peter Wright 1-7 Gary Anderson
Michael van Gerwen 7-3 Stephen Bunting
Adrian Lewis 2-7 Phil Taylor
James Wade 7-2 Kim Huybrechts
Dave Chisnall 7-5 Raymond van Barneveld

Gary Anderson 7-5 Phil Taylor PREMIER LEAGUE OPENER

February 21st, 2015

ANDERSON EDGES TAYLOR IN BETWAY PREMIER LEAGUE OPENER

GARY ANDERSON kicked off the new Betway Premier League season with a dramatic 7-5 win over Phil Taylor in front of an amazing 11,200 fans in Leeds on Thursday night, as Adrian Lewis lit up the tournament with a 113.80 average in a stunning defeat of Raymond van Barneveld.

World Champion Anderson repeated his success over Taylor at Alexandra Palace over the shorter Premier League format, although the game also went the distance as the Scot opened the season in style.

Taylor ended the game with the higher average, but paid for missing double top to snatch a draw in the deciding leg – which added to one earlier missed double to break Anderson’s throw as the six-time Premier League winner fell to a narrow loss.

“I’m delighted to have got the win,” said Anderson. “I was looking at a draw going into the final leg but I managed to pinch it and it’s a bonus for me.

“Maybe it was a bit of a steal in the end but that wasn’t the real Phil tonight and I took advantage. Hopefully I will play better next week but this is a good start.”

World number four Adrian Lewis – the 2011 Premier League runner-up – made a sensational start to the season with his highest-ever average in a televised game as he overcame reigning champion van Barneveld 7-1.

Lewis had lost to the Dutchman in the World Championship just over a month ago, but was in sublime form to kick off the season with the fourth highest average in Premier League history.

“When I lost to Raymond in the World Championship I missed too many doubles and let him in, and I’ve been thinking about that game every day since,” admitted Lewis.

“I knew I was in great form and I’ve shown it tonight, and a 7-1 win for me is a great start to the season. There was a quality atmosphere from the moment we walked out, and it gave me a great feeling.”

2013 Premier League champion Michael van Gerwen raced to a 7-3 win over Kim Huybrechts as he averaged an impressive 107.72 against the Belgian debutant to follow up last weekend’s Masters win with another classy display.

Van Gerwen took an early 3-1 lead, and though Huybrechts reduced the gap to one leg it was the Dutchman who took three legs in a row in mid-game to pull clear before sealing victory with a 145 checkout.

“To win 7-3 in my first game of the Premier League is very good and I played quite well,” said van Gerwen. “I didn’t expect to play this well but I’m very happy with my form, and I finished well at the right time,

“It was Kim’s debut and it was difficult for him, but when you’re on this stage you need to be prepared for everything. He’s a good player and he’ll be back.

“The crowd were amazing and I had goosebumps. That makes you feel incredible and it means a lot to me, and I think it made me play better.

“I want to keep this form for the rest of the Premier League. I hope I can win this tournament again, but there’s a long way to go in the season, and you just need to try and play well every week – but I’m enjoying myself.”

Dave Chisnall reeled off six successive legs as he swept to a 7-1 win over Peter Wright, with the St Helens ace producing the heavier scoring and clinical finishing as he took victory in the season’s opening fixture.

“I’m delighted,” said Chisnall. “Peter didn’t play as well as he can but I outscored him and my finishing was good and I was happy with that.

“The atmosphere was fantastic but I wasn’t nervous. It’s a brilliant venue and I had goosebumps everywhere!”

The night’s other game saw debutant Stephen Bunting hit back from 6-4 down to grab a draw with 2009 Premier League champion James Wade, who took a point on his return to the event.

Wade twice led by two legs – at 3-1 and 6-4 – but saw Bunting hit back on both occasions before the newcomer finished double four and 68 in the last two legs to share the spoils.

“It was the most nervous I’ve ever been in the Premier League but I loved every minute of it,” said Wade following his Premier League return.

“I thought Stephen was going to steamroller me at the beginning but I hung in there, hit a few scores and towards the end I thought I was going to win.

“Perhaps we show each other too much and maybe it was hard to close out the game, but a draw could have been a much worse start for me.”

Former Lakeside Champion Bunting admitted: “It feels like a win for me to be honest. James is a fantastic player and I always know I’m in for a tough match when I play him, so I’m happy to get a point on the board.

“The venue was absolutely amazing – the biggest crowd I’ve ever played in front of before was about 4,000 in Sydney, so it’s fantastic to play in front of a crowd like that and I can’t wait for the rest of the Premier League now.”

The £700,000 tournament continues with Week Two at the BIC in Bournemouth next Thursday, with the games including the all-Stoke clash between Taylor and Lewis and van Gerwen’s meeting with Bunting.

Betway Premier League
Night One, Thursday February 5
First Direct Arena, Leeds
Dave Chisnall 7-1 Peter Wright
Raymond van Barneveld 1-7 Adrian Lewis
Kim Huybrechts 3-7 Michael van Gerwen
Gary Anderson 7-5 Phil Taylor
Stephen Bunting 6-6 James Wade

MATCH INFORMATION
Dave Chisnall v Peter Wright
1-0 – Chisnall holds throw to win the opening leg of the new season.
1-1 – Wright lands a 180 before hitting double top to level.
2-1 – Chisnall finishes 24 to move back ahead.
3-1 – Chisnall posts a 180 before breaking throw on double five.
4-1 – Chisnall suffers double trouble, but has enough cushion to take the leg on double one.
5-1 – Chisnall finishes 82 on double eight for another break of throw and a fourth successive leg.
6-1 – Wright fires home his second 180, but Chisnall finishes 100 on tops to ensure at least a point from the game.
7-1 – Chisnall completes victory in style with an 87 finish for an 11-darter.

Raymond van Barneveld v Adrian Lewis
0-1 – van Barneveld misses two darts at doubles, allowing Lewis in to finish tops for the opening leg.
0-2 – van Barneveld opens with a 180, but Lewis replies with a maximum before finishing 97 for an 11-darter.
1-2 – Lewis kicks off the leg with a maximum, but misses the bull to finish 127 to allow the Dutchman in to take out double 16.
1-3 – Lewis again opens with a 180, and double eight sees him regain his cushion.
1-4 – Lewis lands tops to move three legs clear of his rival.
1-5 – The Stoke star opens with another maximum as he hits five perfect treble 20s, before taking the leg on tops – maintaining his average at 111.
1-6 – Lewis secures a minimum of a point by taking out 138 on double nine.
1-7 – Lewis fires in yet another maximum before finishing 47 for another 11-darter, completing a brilliant win with a 113.80 average – his highest in a televised game and the fourth highest in Premier League history.

Kim Huybrechts v Michael van Gerwen
0-1 – Double ten sees van Gerwen break in the opening leg.
0-2 – Huybrechts misses double 12 to break back as van Gerwen returns on double six to move two legs up.
1-2 – Double ten sees Huybrechts get off the mark.
1-3 – van Gerwen holds throw to regain his two-leg cushion.
2-3 – A 78 finish for Huybrechts sees the Belgian hit back.
2-4 – van Gerwen finishes 82 with a bullseye, double 16 combination.
2-5 – Huybrechts misses three darts at doubles 16 and eight, and van Gerwen capitalises by finishing 79 on double 11.
2-6 – The world number one finishes 87 for an 11-darter to secure a minimum of a draw.
3-6 – Double six sees Huybrechts win his third leg of the game, keeping alive his hopes of grabbing a point.
3-7 – van Gerwen opens with a 180 before sealing a brilliant victory with a 145 finish, ending with a 107.72 average.

Gary Anderson v Phil Taylor
1-0 – Double ten gives Anderson the opening leg.
1-1 – Taylor levels by finishing 82 on tops.
2-1 – Anderson misses two darts at double top, but returns to pin double five to move back ahead.
2-2 – Taylor lands a 180 before double eight levels.
3-2 – Anderson finishes double ten once more as he edges back ahead.
3-3 – Anderson misses his chance to break, and Taylor finishes double 15 to square the game.
4-3 – Taylor lands two 180s in the leg, but Anderson finishes the bull for a 12-darter to move back in front.
4-4 – Taylor finishes double 16 for a 13-darter to hit back.
5-4 – Anderson lands a 180 but gives Taylor a chance to break on a 145 finish – but the 16-time World Champion misses double 14 to complete the combination, and the Scot returns on double six.
5-5 – Taylor lands a 174 score before finishing double 16 to continue the tight affair.
6-5 – Anderson seals at least a point by finishing double top with his third dart.
7-5 – Anderson opens with a 180 but looks to have blown his chance for the match with a missed double nine for a 138 finish – but Taylor misses tops to secure a draw, allowing his rival back in on double four to seal victory.

Stephen Bunting v James Wade
1-0 – Bunting misses the bull for a 170 finish, but settles any debut nerves on double eight.
1-1 – Bunting lands a 180 but is denied the chance to break throw by a 101 finish from Wade.
1-2 – Wade misses the bull to finish 121, but Bunting misses three darts at doubles as the former champion returns to break on double ten.
1-3 – Bunting’s misses are punished as Wade moves two legs clear.
2-3 – Bunting fires in a 177 before finishing double 16 to hit back.
3-3 – Bunting levels with a break of throw in a fine leg, scoring 171 to leave 94 before taking out the combination on double six.
4-3 – Tops moves Bunting back ahead.
4-4 – Bunting opens with a 180 and lands a 171, only to miss three darts at double four as Wade returns on double ten to level.
4-5 – Bunting misses double 11 for a 142 finish, and Wade breaks on tops to move himself back into the lead.
4-6 – Wade seals a minimum of a point on double ten, after the pair trade 180s.
5-6 – Bunting posts another 171 score, and needs the cushion as he returns from six misseed doubles on double four to take the game into a deciding leg.
6-6 – Bunting finishes 68 to snatch a point on double 16 with his second break of throw of the game.

ANDERSON V TAYLOR TO OPEN PREMIER LEAGUE SEASON – LEEDS

January 12th, 2015

BETWAY PREMIER LEAGUE FIXTURES CONFIRMED – ANDERSON-TAYLOR REMATCH TO OPEN SEASON IN LEEDS

THE fixtures for the opening nine weeks of the Betway Premier League have been confirmed, with Gary Anderson and Phil Taylor to meet in a rematch of the World Championship final on the opening league night in Leeds on Thursday February 5.

The ten stars of the Betway Premier League will face each other once over the opening nine weeks of the league season in a round-robin format, before the bottom two players are eliminated on “Judgement Night” in Manchester.

The season will kick off at the First Direct Arena in Leeds on February 5, live on Sky Sports HD, and the five matches on the night will include the rematch of Sunday’s classic World Championship final, which saw Anderson edge out Taylor for the title.

Dave Chisnall’s clash with Peter Wright will kick off the season, before reigning Premier League champion Raymond van Barneveld takes on Adrian Lewis – who landed a nine-darter when the pair met in the World Championship recently.

Debutant Kim Huybrechts will face world number one Michael van Gerwen in the night’s third clash – with the Belgian having landed a nine-darter when they clashed in November’s Grand Slam of Darts – before Anderson, the 2011 Premier League champion, takes on six-time winner Taylor.

The night’s final game in Leeds will see 2009 Premier League champion James Wade make his Premier League return against debutant Stephen Bunting, the former Lakeside Champion who comes into the elite ten-player event following a superb first year on the PDC circuit.

The second league night will see the tournament return for a tenth time to the BIC in Bournemouth, the Premier League’s longest-running venue, with the games including the all-Scottish clash between Wright and Anderson and the all-Stoke battle between Lewis and Taylor.

St Helens duo Chisnall and Bunting will take to the stage at the Echo Arena in Liverpool on Night Three as they face former champions Wade and Taylor respectively, while Anderson takes on van Gerwen in another tasty clash.

The visit to Belfast on February 26 will include the eagerly-awaited battle between van Gerwen and Lewis, while Bunting will get the chance to avenge his recent World Championship defeat to van Barneveld.

Exciting duo Huybrechts and Chisnall will also meet in Belfast, while Anderson takes on Wade in a battle of former Premier League champions and Taylor takes on Wright.

The return to Exeter’s Westpoint Arena on March 5 will open as Holland’s van Barneveld takes on Belgium’s Huybrechts before Wade meets Taylor, Lewis plays Bunting and Chisnall takes on Anderson either side of the rematch of the 2014 World Championship final between van Gerwen and Wright.

The St Helens rivals, Bunting and Chisnall, face off on Night Six in Nottingham, while the world’s top two players, van Gerwen and Taylor, meet in a repeat of the 2013 Premier League final.

The night also features a rematch of the 2011 Premier League final between Anderson and Lewis, while van Barneveld plays Wade and Huybrechts meets Wright.

World Champion Anderson returns to home soil in Scotland for Night Seven in Glasgow on March 19, as he takes on Belgian ace Huybrechts, while Lothian-born Wright will play Stephen Bunting at The SSE Hydro.

Taylor and van Barneveld will renew their rivalry in another Glasgow fixture, with Wade meeting Lewis and Chisnall taking on van Gerwen.

The Premier League then crosses the Irish Sea for Night Eight, with the five games at Dublin’s 3Arena including the all-Dutch rematch of last year’s final between van Barneveld and van Gerwen.

The other fixtures in Dublin see Taylor meet Huybrechts, Anderson face Bunting, Wright play Wade and Lewis taking on Chisnall.

Judgement Night, the season’s ninth league night, will see the stars head to Manchester for the decisive final fixtures before the bottom two players are eliminated.

World Champion Anderson will take on Premier League champion van Barneveld in Manchester, with Taylor taking on Chisnall in a repeat of November’s Grand Slam final, while Lewis plays Wright, Bunting meets Huybrechts and van Gerwen faces Wade.

Following Judgement Night, the remaining eight players face each other once more over the remaining six league nights, before the top four players progress to the Play-Offs at The O2 in London on Thursday May 21.

Betway Premier League Fixtures
Night One, Thursday February 5
First Direct Arena, Leeds
Dave Chisnall v Peter Wright
Raymond van Barneveld v Adrian Lewis
Kim Huybrechts v Michael van Gerwen
Gary Anderson v Phil Taylor
Stephen Bunting v James Wade
Tickets: 0844 248 1585 orwww.firstdirectarena.com

Night Two, Thursday February 12
BIC, Bournemouth
Peter Wright v Gary Anderson
Michael van Gerwen v Stephen Bunting
Adrian Lewis v Phil Taylor
James Wade v Kim Huybrechts
Dave Chisnall v Raymond van Barneveld
Tickets: 0844 576 3000 orwww.bhlivetickets.co.uk

Night Three, Thursday February 19
Echo Arena, Liverpool
James Wade v Dave Chisnall
Peter Wright v Raymond van Barneveld
Phil Taylor v Stephen Bunting
Michael van Gerwen v Gary Anderson
Adrian Lewis v Kim Huybrechts
Tickets: 0844 8000 400 or www.echoarena.com

Night Four, Thursday February 26
Odyssey Arena, Belfast
Kim Huybrechts v Dave Chisnall
Gary Anderson v James Wade
Michael van Gerwen v Adrian Lewis
Stephen Bunting v Raymond van Barneveld
Phil Taylor v Peter Wright
Tickets: 028 9073 9074 or www odysseyarena.com

Night Five, Thursday March 5
Westpoint Arena, Exeter
Raymond van Barneveld v Kim Huybrechts
James Wade v Phil Taylor
Adrian Lewis v Stephen Bunting
Peter Wright v Michael van Gerwen
Dave Chisnall v Gary Anderson
Tickets: 08444 99 99 55 or www.ticketzone.co.uk

Night Six, Thursday March 12
Capital FM Arena, Nottingham
Stephen Bunting v Dave Chisnall
Raymond van Barneveld v James Wade
Phil Taylor v Michael van Gerwen
Gary Anderson v Adrian Lewis
Kim Huybrechts v Peter Wright
Tickets: 0843 373 3000 orwww.capitalfmarena.com

Night Seven, Thursday March 19
The SSE Hydro, Glasgow
James Wade v Adrian Lewis
Peter Wright v Stephen Bunting
Raymond van Barneveld v Phil Taylor
Kim Huybrechts v Gary Anderson
Dave Chisnall v Michael van Gerwen
Tickets: 0844 395 4000 or www.ticketSOUP.com

Night Eight, Thursday March 26
3Arena, Dublin
Adrian Lewis v Dave Chisnall
Gary Anderson v Stephen Bunting
Peter Wright v James Wade
Michael van Gerwen v Raymond van Barneveld
Phil Taylor v Kim Huybrechts
Tickets: 0818 719 3000 (Ire), 0844 8472 455 (UK) or www.ticketmaster.ie

Judgement Night, Thursday April 2
The Manchester Arena
Michael van Gerwen v James Wade
Stephen Bunting v Kim Huybrechts
Gary Anderson v Raymond van Barneveld
Phil Taylor v Dave Chisnall
Adrian Lewis v Peter Wright
Tickets: 0844 847 8000 or www.eventim.co.uk

Following Week Nine, the bottom two players from the league table are eliminated. Revised fixtures for Weeks Ten-15 will be announced following Week Nine at www.pdc.tv, with the remaining eight players facing each other once more during the final six league nights.

Night Ten, Thursday April 9
Motorpoint Arena, Sheffield
Tickets: 0114 256 5656 orwww.motorpointarenasheffield.co.uk

Night 11, Thursday April 16
GE Oil & GAs Arena, Aberdeen
Tickets: 08444 77 9000 orwww.ticketmaster.co.uk/aecc

Night 12, Thursday April 23
Motorpoint Arena, Cardiff
Tickets: Sold Out

Night 13, Thursday April 30
The Barclaycard Arena, Birmingham
Tickets: 0844 338 8000 or www theticketfactory.com

Night 14, Thursday May 7
Metro Radio Arena, Newcastle
Tickets: 08444 93 6666 or www.eventim.co.uk

Night 15, Thursday May 14
The Brighton Centre
Tickets: 0844 847 1515 or www.ticketmaster.co.uk

Play-Offs, Thursday May 21
The O2, London
Tickets: 0844 856 0202 or www.axs.com

For full ticket information and Terms & Conditions, visit www.pdc.tv/tickets.

Tournament Format
The ten players will face each other once during the opening nine weeks. Following Week Nine, the bottom two players from the league table will be eliminated. From Weeks Ten-15, the remaining eight players will play each other once again. Following Week 15, the top four players will progress to the Play-Offs.

All league fixtures will be the best of 12 legs of 501. Once a player reaches seven legs, they have won the game and no further legs will be played.

Two points will be awarded for a win, one point will be awarded for a six-all draw and no points will be awarded for a defeat.

The player named on the left in the fixture will throw first in the opening leg of each game. This will be reversed in the second meeting (where applicable).

Should players be tied on points in the league table, Leg Difference will be the first deciding factor. If this is also a tie, then Legs Won Against Throw will be the next deciding factor, and any further tie would be split by a comparison of the relevant players’ three-dart tournament average at that stage.

All nights will begin at 7pm and be screened live on Sky Sports HD.

Latest News

Phil Taylor v Stephen Bunting (7-1) Week 3 Premier League

February 21st, 2015

MICHAEL VAN GERWEN moved a point clear at the top of the Betway Premier League table with a 7-4 win over World Champion Gary Anderson on Thursday, as Stephen Bunting suffered disappointment in Liverpool with a 7-1 reverse to Phil Taylor.

Van Gerwen ended Anderson’s winning start to the season as he punished the Scot for 23 missed doubles during their contest.

Although the game failed to live up to the standard of Sunday’s German Darts Championship final – when van Gerwen averaged almost 118 – it carried high drama throughout as Anderson saw a 3-1 lead over the world number one slip away.

Van Gerwen took five straight legs as he moved 6-3 up, and though Anderson hit back with a 68 finish it was the Dutchman who won the 11th leg, on double 12, to seal his third win of the season.

“There was a lot of pressure tonight because one of us was going to be top of the league with a win so you know you can’t afford any mistakes, and I’m glad I didn’t make as many as Gary,” said van Gerwen.

“His scoring was a bit better than mine, but he didn’t take advantage. I can’t always be at my best but to get the win was the most important thing.

“The crowd were fantastic in a big venue and I enjoyed this win. I feel good and this will give me more confidence.”

Dave Chisnall and James Wade join van Gerwen in being unbeaten after three weeks, after they shared the points with a six-all draw in front of over 7,000 fans in Liverpool.

Chisnall led 2-0 only to allow Wade back into the match before a 142 checkout secured the 2009 Premier League champion a point, but the St Helens ace took the game’s final leg with a 14-darter to claim a share of the spoils.

“I think it was the right result but I gave a point away,” said Wade. “I’ll take the draw and move on from here.

“The 142 was great and those type of shots are going in okay, but then I got a little bit lazy in the last leg. I think we were both under par throughout the game, but I’ll take a draw when I’m not playing so well.”

Chisnall said: “James was steady and he finished well, so I’ll take a point from that.

“I didn’t feel nervous but it was one of those nights where the darts didn’t go as well as I wanted them to and neither of us scored as well as we wanted to.

“Early on I could have gone 3-0 up, and that’s where the game changed. The 142 to put him 6-5 up was a big shot as well because if he didn’t hit that I probably would have won the game.”

Two other games on the night ended in a stalemate, as Kim Huybrechts denied Adrian Lewis a win from their game and Peter Wright came from 5-1 down to claim a draw with reigning Premier League champion Raymond van Barneveld.

Van Barneveld had seemed set to storm to victory when he romped into a 5-1 lead with an average of 118 – only for Wright to finish 147, 124 and a key 94 as he hit back to claim his first point of the season.

“It feels like a win after coming from 5-1 down,” admitted Wright. “I had my own battle in my head tonight because I didn’t want to lose 7-1 again and I dug deep and managed to pull back into the game.

“My finishing helped me out but I should be scoring with these guys and that’s not quite happening at the moment. Hopefully that will start to come in the next few weeks, but to get a point this week is good and I’m proud of my fighting spirit.”

Belgian ace Huybrechts also picked his first point of the year, in his debut season, as he took out 62 in the deciding leg of his clash with Lewis.

“It was a weird match and it probably wasn’t the best game we’ve played but I’m happy with the point,” said Huybrechts. “The first point in your debut season is the hardest to get and I’ve got that.

“I held on and when Adrian gave me chances I took them tonight. I had put a lot of pressure on myself being in the Premier League because you want to prove you belong here, but I said that I want to just enjoy it and do what I can.

“I enjoyed it and I have to keep doing that because the Premier League is the best experience you can have as a darts player and I want to enjoy every moment on that stage.”

The night’s other game saw Phil Taylor romp past Stephen Bunting 7-1 with a clinical display as the local favourite, who hails from St Helens, endured a nightmare.

Taylor, aided by finishes of 98 and 80, took the first five legs without reply before Bunting hit back on tops in leg six, but checkouts of 121 and 151 saw the six-time Premier League champion mercilessly wrap up a comprehensive win.

“Stephen didn’t play as well as he can, and maybe the occasion of playing in Liverpool got to him a little bit because he’s a lot better player than he showed tonight,” said Taylor.

“When he got a leg back I could see he was thinking about the comeback, but the 121 killed him and I finished it off well from there. It’s a tough game but this is just one week for Stephen.

“You don’t win the Premier League in one week and you don’t lose it in a week either, but it’s good to get another two points in the bag.”

* Jan Molby secured a £5,000 donation for Radio City’s Cash For Kids charity after defeating Eric Bristow 2-1 in a special challenge match at the Echo arena in Liverpool on Thursday.

Former Danish international footballer Molby, who made over 200 appearances for Liverpool in a 12-year career at Anfield, took to the stage ahead of the Betway Premier League in Liverpool to take on the five-time World Champion.

The best-of-three leg match was televised live by TV3, the Danish broadcaster under the Viasat banner who screen PDC tournaments, with a £5,000 donation on offer to the winner’s charity.

Despite being a rookie on the big darts stage, Molby won the game’s opening leg before Bristow hit back to level by landing double top.

The deciding leg saw Bristow unable to finish 134, and Molby stepped in to finish 95 by hitting treble 19, a double three – when aiming for double 19 – and double 16.

The Betway Premier League continues next Thursday with Week Four at the Odyssey Arena in Belfast, with tickets still available by calling 028 9073 9074 or online via www.odysseyarena.com.
Betway Premier League
Night Three, Thursday February 19
Echo Arena, Liverpool 

James Wade 6-6 Dave Chisnall
Peter Wright 6-6 Raymond van Barneveld
Phil Taylor 7-1 Stephen Bunting
Michael van Gerwen 7-4 Gary Anderson
Adrian Lewis 6-6 Kim Huybrechts

All games are the best of 12 legs

LEAGUE TABLE

After Week Three

P

W

D

L

Legs +/-

Pts

Michael van Gerwen

3

3

0

0

+11

6

Dave Chisnall

3

2

1

0

+8

5

Phil Taylor

3

2

0

1

+9

4

James Wade

3

1

2

0

+5

4

Gary Anderson

3

2

0

1

+5

4

Adrian Lewis

3

1

1

1

+1

3

Raymond van Barneveld

3

0

1

2

-8

1

Kim Huybrechts

3

0

1

2

-9

1

Stephen Bunting

3

0

1

2

-10

1

Peter Wright

3

0

1

2

-12

1

MATCH INFORMATION
James Wade v Dave Chisnall 

0-1 – Chisnall breaks throw in the opening leg by finishing 60 on tops.
0-2 – Chisnall misses two darts at double eight, but Wade is unable to take out 78 as the St Helens ace returns on double eight to move two legs up.
1-2 – A golden chance to win a third successive leg slips away for Chisnall, who misses six darts at doubles across three visits to punish Wade, before the left-hander posts double five to finally get off the mark.
2-2 – Wade misses double 14 and seven to finish 88, but returns on double two to level the game with a break of throw.
3-2 – Wade fires in a 165 score to leave 40, before finishing double ten to move ahead.
3-3 – Chisnall opens with two 180s to set up a nine-darter opportunity, and lands a seventh treble 20 before missing out on a treble 19 for the 141 finish – but he returns to take out tops for an 11-darter to level.
3-4 – Both players miss the bull before Chisnall returns to finish double eight for a break of throw.
4-4 – Wade takes out 64 on tops as he breaks back.
5-4 – Wade finishes 72 in two darts on double 12 as he edges back ahead.
5-5 – Chisnall fires in his third 180 of the game before landing double 18 to square the contest once more.
6-5 – Wade secures at least a point in style with a brilliant 142 checkout.
6-6 – Chisnall lands his fourth 180 before finishing 63 for a 14-darter to snatch a draw.

Match Stats

James Wade 6-6 Dave Chisnall
17 100+ 17
12 140+ 6
0 170+ 0
0 180 4
90.19 Average 93.27
142 High Finish 63
2 Breaks of Throw 2
6/20 – 30% Checkout % 6/22 – 27%

Peter Wright v Raymond van Barneveld 
0-1 – van Barneveld lands a 180 before finishing 80 on tops to break in the opening leg.
0-2 – The Dutchman finishes double 16 to move two legs up.
1-2 – van Barneveld posts another 180, but misses double 16 for a 12-darter as Wright takes out a superb 147 to hit back.
1-3 – The reigning Premier League champion lands another maximum before finishing 81 for an 11-darter to move two legs up again.
1-4 – The Dutchman fires in his fourth 180 before taking out 89 for a 12-darter – maintaining an average above 118 as he breaks throw once more.
1-5 – Wright misses double 16 to finish 103, and van Barneveld capitalises by taking out 54 on tops.
2-5 – The pair trade 180s before Wright takes out 56 on tops to hit back.
3-5 – Wright fires in his second maximum of the night before finishing 121 on the bull to break and hit back to trail by just two legs.
3-6 – Wright misses the bull to take out 92, and van Barneveld returns to take out 41 on double 16 to secure at least a point.
4-6 – Wright finishes 94 in two darts with a treble 18, double top combination.
5-6 – Wright misses double eight to finish 133, but returns to hit double four with his third dart as he sends the game into a decider.
6-6 – Wright lands his third 180 of the game and then posts a 180 to be first to a finish, leaving 81 after nine darts before snatching a draw by landing double six for a 14-darter.

Match Stats

Peter Wright 6-6 Raymond van Barneveld
10 100+ 20
9 140+ 8
0 170+ 0
3 180 5
93.45 Average 102.94
147 High Finish 89
3 Breaks of Throw 3
6/15 – 40% Checkout % 6/9 – 67%

Phil Taylor v Stephen Bunting 
1-0 – Taylor finishes 98 on double 12 to win the opening leg.
2-0 – Taylor lands a 180 to leave 81 after nine darts, before finishing double eight to break throw – after Bunting misses a single 20 to leave tops.
3-0 – Taylor finishes double eight as he moves three legs up.
4-0 – Bunting leaves 36 with a 140 score – but Taylor finishes 80 on tops to break throw once again.
5-0 – Double five gives Taylor a five-leg lead.
5-1 – Bunting lands double top to win his first leg of the game.
6-1 – Bunting fires in a 180 and then scores 171 to leave 50 – only to watch Taylor finish 121 on double 14 for a killer blow.
7-1 – Taylor takes out 151 on tops to complete a comprehensive win, ending with a 100.03 average.

Match Stats

Phil Taylor 7-1 Stephen Bunting
11 100+ 3
9 140+ 3
0 170+ 1
1 180 1
100.03 Average 84.62
151 High Finish 40
3 Breaks of Throw 0
7/14 – 50% Checkout % 1/3 – 33%

Michael van Gerwen v Gary Anderson 
0-1 – The pair trade 180s in the opening leg, with Anderson’s three missed doubles matched by a trio of misses from van Gerwen before the World Champion returns on double four to break throw immediately.
0-2 – van Gerwen misses the bull for a 124 finish, and Anderson lands double 19 with his third dart at the bed to move two legs up.
1-2 – Double 18 sees van Gerwen hit back to win his first leg of the game.
1-3 – The pair again trade 180s, but van Gerwen is punished for three missed doubles – at the bull, double eight and double four – as Anderson lands double one to regain his two-leg lead.
2-3 – Anderson misses double top and ten, and van Gerwen steps in to finish double 16 as he again reduces the gap.
3-3 – Anderson misses three darts at double 19, and van Gerwen breaks throw on tops to level the contest.
4-3 – van Gerwen lands double 16 as he moves ahead for the first time.
5-3 – Anderson pays the price for five more missed doubles, as van Gerwen breaks to win a fourth straight leg by landing double ten.
6-3 – Anderson lands his fourth 180, but misses double 19 once more as van Gerwen finishes tops to secure a point.
6-4 – Anderson regains his range by finishing 68 on tops to hit back.
7-4 – van Gerwen lands a 180 to leave 24, and when Anderson misses the bull he steps in to finish double 12 and seal the win.

Match Stats

Michael van Gerwen 7-4 Gary Anderson
13 100+ 17
10 140+ 5
0 170+ 0
4 180 5
101.14 Average 95.74
56 High Finish 68
2 Breaks of Throw 1
7/18 – 39% Checkout % 4/27 – 15%

Adrian Lewis v Kim Huybrechts 
0-1 – Lewis lands a 180, but Huybrechts breaks throw on double ten.
1-1 – Lewis levels by hitting double ten to break back.
2-1 – Lewis fires in his second maximum before taking out 47 – at the second time of asking – to move ahead.
2-2 – Lewis lands a 177 but misses three darts at doubles, allowing Huybrechts in on double 16 to leve.
3-2 – Double ten sees Lewis edge back ahead.
3-3 – Huybrechts hits two 180s and seven perfect darts, and although a nine-darter goes begging the Belgian defies a 180 in reply from Lewis to land double eight.
4-3 – Huybrechts fires in his third 180 of the game, but Lewis regains the lead on tops.
4-4 – Lewis misses three darts at doubles to break, and Huybrechts finishes double two to level again.
5-4 – Huybrechts posts a fourth maximum, but can only watch on as Lewis finishes 72 on tops to move back ahead.
5-5 – Double top sees Huybrechts draw level again.
6-5 – Lewis lands a 180, his fourth, before finishing 80 to secure a point.
6-6 – Huybrechts finishes 62 in two darts on double 16 to claim his first point of the season with a draw.

Match Stats

Adrian Lewis 6-6 Kim Huybrechts
14 100+ 10
8 140+ 6
1 170+ 0
4 180 4
92.16 Average 88.98
80 High Finish 62
1 Breaks of Throw 1
6/17 – 35% Checkout % 6/14 – 43%

Phil Taylor v Adrian Lewis (7-2) Week 2 Premier League

February 21st, 2015

Gary Anderson v Peter Wright (7-1) 

Peter Wright's new darts couldn't save him
Peter Wright’s new darts couldn’t save him (Pic Lawrence Lustig/PDC)

A second week of delicious darting duels got underway in a bouncing Bournemouth with a match-up between the two Highland flingers in the competition, Gary Anderson and Peter Wright, and it was the phenomenal finishing of the newly crowned World Champ that enabled him to inflict a second consecutive 7-1 mauling upon his fellow Scot.

Ever a persistent switcher of his equipment, Wright opted to arrow off with new darts and it initially seemed to do the trick as he landed a 56 checkout to take leg one and although there was to be an upturn in his performance levels throughout, there was to be no upturn in fortunes for Snakebite as he failed to win another leg, more due to the magnificence of Scotland’s premier darter as he sealed two more points, starting off by firing in a 126 in response and then a 121 to break and steal a march.

A third consecutive ton plus finish was millimetres away for Ando when he missed the bull for a 124 but two more duly followed, firstly when he broke with a 100 in leg five to lead 4-1 and then completed a hat-trick of breaks with a 124 to make it 6-1, an 11-darter completed with a 92 outshot enabling him to take the leg previous. A true display of a champion was capped off with a tremendous tops, maintaining his perfect start and averaging 107.

Michael van Gerwen v Stephen Bunting (7-3)

A deluge of Dutch darting genius from Michael Gerwen gave him another comfortable win over another debutant, Stephen Bunting, who try as he might could do nothing to stop the Green Machine from posting a 7-3 success, who at times threw almost god-like arras.

Bouyed by his two victories at the weekend in the UK Open qualifiers, he was firmly in the zone the moment ‘game on’ was called, hitting a 32 to hold in leg one, a 12-darter in leg two to take the throw and a further 32 to race into a 3-0 lead. It could have been 4-0 as he pummeled the triple 20 and 19 beds, missing tops to break, Bunting breathing a sigh of relief as he took out 50 to notch a leg on the board. Frustrated at his miss, the nine-time major winner held for a 4-1 advantage and was only too pleased to see the former BDO world champion fire two double attempts wide of the outer ring, breaking to go to within one leg of a point at 5-1.

The Bullet gave it his best shot to stay in the contest, winning the next two legs with checkouts of 87 and 24, but there was no putting the brakes on the van Gerwen charge who followed up a tops in leg nine with a sublime 138 to punish two more stray doubles for Bunting and turn one point into two.

Phil Taylor v Adrian Lewis (7-2)

Phil Taylor with board in Bournemouth
Phil Taylor put on a masterclass last night (Pic Lustig/PDC)

The Stokies squared off and once again the master outdid his pupil as despite coming into the match as an underdog in the eyes of some, Phil Taylor did a number on Adrian Lewis, beating him convincingly 7-2, further evidence that you write the 16-time world champion off at your peril.

Both players failed to hold their throws in the first two legs, the Power polishing off a 65 after three missed doubles for Lewis, Jackpot returning the favour immediately by breaking with a 47. The younger man’s pinpoint accuracy then helping him hit tops before a double 6 for Phil brought things back level. An average of 115+ at that moment was always going to be difficult for Lewis to sustain but it dipped fairly dramatically from the conclusion of leg four and Phil’s stayed steady, breaking with a 48 and 40 in legs five and seven, interjected by a 32, leaving him with clear headway at 5-2.

Adrian’s last hope of salvaging any points came in leg eight when he aimed for a 127 and skewed his last dart to take it out, Taylor breaking his darting heart by hitting 57 and then earning a final break and welcome two points thanks to a 66, with the added bonus of a 108 average.

James Wade v Kim Huybrechts (7-2)

There have been few more consistent performers in the Premier League over the years than James Wade and it was a typically clinical effort from the Machine that blew away the Hurricane Kim Huybrechts 7-2 as the Belgian continues to try to acclimatise to life amongst the elite.

Ever trusty on tops. it was a double 20 that got Wade winning leg one and also leg two as he took out 80 after four errant darts at a double for Huybrechts the younger. A 72 made it three zip to James but the new boy pocketed leg four with a 45 despite missing the centre red for a 127. In the groove and in the mood, Wadey did what Kim failed to do in the previous leg and hit a ton plus checkout, a stupendous 143, sustaining the momemtum to break in leg six courtesy of a 64 and hold with a half century outshot to nab a point at 6-1 up.

A much needed max set Kim up for a tilt at leg eight which he duly took but he’d left himself with too much to do as Wade showed he was top man, closing out the match with another double 20 and likewise to the winners of the previous matches tonight, recording a very healthy three-figure average, a superb 104.

Dave Chisnall v Raymond van Barneveld (7-5)

Dave Chisnall wins in Bournemouth
Dave Chisnall wins in Bournemouth (Pic Lawrence Lustig/PDC)

Disastrous doubling left Barney barmy as his weak finishing allowed Dave Chisnall to overcome the Dutch darting dynamo 7-5 from 5-4 down, his first win over Raymond van Barneveld since 2012 to give him a further two points and leave the five-time world champion pointless.

Neither player gave their opponent chance to break throw in the first three legs, a 12-darter including two 180’s for Chisnall the main highlight as he headed the clash 2-1. The doubling jitters started for Barney in leg four as he missed three doubles but got away with it and held, and again in leg seven, this time when two darts at 76 would have given him a crucial break to lead 4-3, Chizzy punishing him by taking it from under his nose with a 101. Still, a 52 got Raymond back to all-square.

He then looked to be in pole position for the points, stepping up to the oche to hit double 16 and break for a 5-4 advantage after Dave’s four darting doubles missed their targets, only for the headshaking to start as RVB missed six efforts at a double himself, a last gasp dart for the St Helens man at double 5 giving him an instant break back. Chisnall’s doubling radar was far from sound either as he neglected to take three leg winning opportunities for a priceless point, thankfully for him the former postman failed to deliver four darts in the requisite doubles, gifting Dave that point.

An 87 went begging for Chizzy on two occasions and you thought that perhaps a first drawn game of the night was on the cards, however Barney couldn’t get down to a finish and third dart in hand Dave sounded the death knell.

Betway Premier League
Night Two, Thursday February 12
BIC, Bournemouth 

Peter Wright 1-7 Gary Anderson
Michael van Gerwen 7-3 Stephen Bunting
Adrian Lewis 2-7 Phil Taylor
James Wade 7-2 Kim Huybrechts
Dave Chisnall 7-5 Raymond van Barneveld

Gary Anderson 7-5 Phil Taylor PREMIER LEAGUE OPENER

February 21st, 2015

ANDERSON EDGES TAYLOR IN BETWAY PREMIER LEAGUE OPENER

GARY ANDERSON kicked off the new Betway Premier League season with a dramatic 7-5 win over Phil Taylor in front of an amazing 11,200 fans in Leeds on Thursday night, as Adrian Lewis lit up the tournament with a 113.80 average in a stunning defeat of Raymond van Barneveld.

World Champion Anderson repeated his success over Taylor at Alexandra Palace over the shorter Premier League format, although the game also went the distance as the Scot opened the season in style.

Taylor ended the game with the higher average, but paid for missing double top to snatch a draw in the deciding leg – which added to one earlier missed double to break Anderson’s throw as the six-time Premier League winner fell to a narrow loss.

“I’m delighted to have got the win,” said Anderson. “I was looking at a draw going into the final leg but I managed to pinch it and it’s a bonus for me.

“Maybe it was a bit of a steal in the end but that wasn’t the real Phil tonight and I took advantage. Hopefully I will play better next week but this is a good start.”

World number four Adrian Lewis – the 2011 Premier League runner-up – made a sensational start to the season with his highest-ever average in a televised game as he overcame reigning champion van Barneveld 7-1.

Lewis had lost to the Dutchman in the World Championship just over a month ago, but was in sublime form to kick off the season with the fourth highest average in Premier League history.

“When I lost to Raymond in the World Championship I missed too many doubles and let him in, and I’ve been thinking about that game every day since,” admitted Lewis.

“I knew I was in great form and I’ve shown it tonight, and a 7-1 win for me is a great start to the season. There was a quality atmosphere from the moment we walked out, and it gave me a great feeling.”

2013 Premier League champion Michael van Gerwen raced to a 7-3 win over Kim Huybrechts as he averaged an impressive 107.72 against the Belgian debutant to follow up last weekend’s Masters win with another classy display.

Van Gerwen took an early 3-1 lead, and though Huybrechts reduced the gap to one leg it was the Dutchman who took three legs in a row in mid-game to pull clear before sealing victory with a 145 checkout.

“To win 7-3 in my first game of the Premier League is very good and I played quite well,” said van Gerwen. “I didn’t expect to play this well but I’m very happy with my form, and I finished well at the right time,

“It was Kim’s debut and it was difficult for him, but when you’re on this stage you need to be prepared for everything. He’s a good player and he’ll be back.

“The crowd were amazing and I had goosebumps. That makes you feel incredible and it means a lot to me, and I think it made me play better.

“I want to keep this form for the rest of the Premier League. I hope I can win this tournament again, but there’s a long way to go in the season, and you just need to try and play well every week – but I’m enjoying myself.”

Dave Chisnall reeled off six successive legs as he swept to a 7-1 win over Peter Wright, with the St Helens ace producing the heavier scoring and clinical finishing as he took victory in the season’s opening fixture.

“I’m delighted,” said Chisnall. “Peter didn’t play as well as he can but I outscored him and my finishing was good and I was happy with that.

“The atmosphere was fantastic but I wasn’t nervous. It’s a brilliant venue and I had goosebumps everywhere!”

The night’s other game saw debutant Stephen Bunting hit back from 6-4 down to grab a draw with 2009 Premier League champion James Wade, who took a point on his return to the event.

Wade twice led by two legs – at 3-1 and 6-4 – but saw Bunting hit back on both occasions before the newcomer finished double four and 68 in the last two legs to share the spoils.

“It was the most nervous I’ve ever been in the Premier League but I loved every minute of it,” said Wade following his Premier League return.

“I thought Stephen was going to steamroller me at the beginning but I hung in there, hit a few scores and towards the end I thought I was going to win.

“Perhaps we show each other too much and maybe it was hard to close out the game, but a draw could have been a much worse start for me.”

Former Lakeside Champion Bunting admitted: “It feels like a win for me to be honest. James is a fantastic player and I always know I’m in for a tough match when I play him, so I’m happy to get a point on the board.

“The venue was absolutely amazing – the biggest crowd I’ve ever played in front of before was about 4,000 in Sydney, so it’s fantastic to play in front of a crowd like that and I can’t wait for the rest of the Premier League now.”

The £700,000 tournament continues with Week Two at the BIC in Bournemouth next Thursday, with the games including the all-Stoke clash between Taylor and Lewis and van Gerwen’s meeting with Bunting.

Betway Premier League
Night One, Thursday February 5
First Direct Arena, Leeds
Dave Chisnall 7-1 Peter Wright
Raymond van Barneveld 1-7 Adrian Lewis
Kim Huybrechts 3-7 Michael van Gerwen
Gary Anderson 7-5 Phil Taylor
Stephen Bunting 6-6 James Wade

MATCH INFORMATION
Dave Chisnall v Peter Wright
1-0 – Chisnall holds throw to win the opening leg of the new season.
1-1 – Wright lands a 180 before hitting double top to level.
2-1 – Chisnall finishes 24 to move back ahead.
3-1 – Chisnall posts a 180 before breaking throw on double five.
4-1 – Chisnall suffers double trouble, but has enough cushion to take the leg on double one.
5-1 – Chisnall finishes 82 on double eight for another break of throw and a fourth successive leg.
6-1 – Wright fires home his second 180, but Chisnall finishes 100 on tops to ensure at least a point from the game.
7-1 – Chisnall completes victory in style with an 87 finish for an 11-darter.

Raymond van Barneveld v Adrian Lewis
0-1 – van Barneveld misses two darts at doubles, allowing Lewis in to finish tops for the opening leg.
0-2 – van Barneveld opens with a 180, but Lewis replies with a maximum before finishing 97 for an 11-darter.
1-2 – Lewis kicks off the leg with a maximum, but misses the bull to finish 127 to allow the Dutchman in to take out double 16.
1-3 – Lewis again opens with a 180, and double eight sees him regain his cushion.
1-4 – Lewis lands tops to move three legs clear of his rival.
1-5 – The Stoke star opens with another maximum as he hits five perfect treble 20s, before taking the leg on tops – maintaining his average at 111.
1-6 – Lewis secures a minimum of a point by taking out 138 on double nine.
1-7 – Lewis fires in yet another maximum before finishing 47 for another 11-darter, completing a brilliant win with a 113.80 average – his highest in a televised game and the fourth highest in Premier League history.

Kim Huybrechts v Michael van Gerwen
0-1 – Double ten sees van Gerwen break in the opening leg.
0-2 – Huybrechts misses double 12 to break back as van Gerwen returns on double six to move two legs up.
1-2 – Double ten sees Huybrechts get off the mark.
1-3 – van Gerwen holds throw to regain his two-leg cushion.
2-3 – A 78 finish for Huybrechts sees the Belgian hit back.
2-4 – van Gerwen finishes 82 with a bullseye, double 16 combination.
2-5 – Huybrechts misses three darts at doubles 16 and eight, and van Gerwen capitalises by finishing 79 on double 11.
2-6 – The world number one finishes 87 for an 11-darter to secure a minimum of a draw.
3-6 – Double six sees Huybrechts win his third leg of the game, keeping alive his hopes of grabbing a point.
3-7 – van Gerwen opens with a 180 before sealing a brilliant victory with a 145 finish, ending with a 107.72 average.

Gary Anderson v Phil Taylor
1-0 – Double ten gives Anderson the opening leg.
1-1 – Taylor levels by finishing 82 on tops.
2-1 – Anderson misses two darts at double top, but returns to pin double five to move back ahead.
2-2 – Taylor lands a 180 before double eight levels.
3-2 – Anderson finishes double ten once more as he edges back ahead.
3-3 – Anderson misses his chance to break, and Taylor finishes double 15 to square the game.
4-3 – Taylor lands two 180s in the leg, but Anderson finishes the bull for a 12-darter to move back in front.
4-4 – Taylor finishes double 16 for a 13-darter to hit back.
5-4 – Anderson lands a 180 but gives Taylor a chance to break on a 145 finish – but the 16-time World Champion misses double 14 to complete the combination, and the Scot returns on double six.
5-5 – Taylor lands a 174 score before finishing double 16 to continue the tight affair.
6-5 – Anderson seals at least a point by finishing double top with his third dart.
7-5 – Anderson opens with a 180 but looks to have blown his chance for the match with a missed double nine for a 138 finish – but Taylor misses tops to secure a draw, allowing his rival back in on double four to seal victory.

Stephen Bunting v James Wade
1-0 – Bunting misses the bull for a 170 finish, but settles any debut nerves on double eight.
1-1 – Bunting lands a 180 but is denied the chance to break throw by a 101 finish from Wade.
1-2 – Wade misses the bull to finish 121, but Bunting misses three darts at doubles as the former champion returns to break on double ten.
1-3 – Bunting’s misses are punished as Wade moves two legs clear.
2-3 – Bunting fires in a 177 before finishing double 16 to hit back.
3-3 – Bunting levels with a break of throw in a fine leg, scoring 171 to leave 94 before taking out the combination on double six.
4-3 – Tops moves Bunting back ahead.
4-4 – Bunting opens with a 180 and lands a 171, only to miss three darts at double four as Wade returns on double ten to level.
4-5 – Bunting misses double 11 for a 142 finish, and Wade breaks on tops to move himself back into the lead.
4-6 – Wade seals a minimum of a point on double ten, after the pair trade 180s.
5-6 – Bunting posts another 171 score, and needs the cushion as he returns from six misseed doubles on double four to take the game into a deciding leg.
6-6 – Bunting finishes 68 to snatch a point on double 16 with his second break of throw of the game.

ANDERSON V TAYLOR TO OPEN PREMIER LEAGUE SEASON – LEEDS

January 12th, 2015

BETWAY PREMIER LEAGUE FIXTURES CONFIRMED – ANDERSON-TAYLOR REMATCH TO OPEN SEASON IN LEEDS

THE fixtures for the opening nine weeks of the Betway Premier League have been confirmed, with Gary Anderson and Phil Taylor to meet in a rematch of the World Championship final on the opening league night in Leeds on Thursday February 5.

The ten stars of the Betway Premier League will face each other once over the opening nine weeks of the league season in a round-robin format, before the bottom two players are eliminated on “Judgement Night” in Manchester.

The season will kick off at the First Direct Arena in Leeds on February 5, live on Sky Sports HD, and the five matches on the night will include the rematch of Sunday’s classic World Championship final, which saw Anderson edge out Taylor for the title.

Dave Chisnall’s clash with Peter Wright will kick off the season, before reigning Premier League champion Raymond van Barneveld takes on Adrian Lewis – who landed a nine-darter when the pair met in the World Championship recently.

Debutant Kim Huybrechts will face world number one Michael van Gerwen in the night’s third clash – with the Belgian having landed a nine-darter when they clashed in November’s Grand Slam of Darts – before Anderson, the 2011 Premier League champion, takes on six-time winner Taylor.

The night’s final game in Leeds will see 2009 Premier League champion James Wade make his Premier League return against debutant Stephen Bunting, the former Lakeside Champion who comes into the elite ten-player event following a superb first year on the PDC circuit.

The second league night will see the tournament return for a tenth time to the BIC in Bournemouth, the Premier League’s longest-running venue, with the games including the all-Scottish clash between Wright and Anderson and the all-Stoke battle between Lewis and Taylor.

St Helens duo Chisnall and Bunting will take to the stage at the Echo Arena in Liverpool on Night Three as they face former champions Wade and Taylor respectively, while Anderson takes on van Gerwen in another tasty clash.

The visit to Belfast on February 26 will include the eagerly-awaited battle between van Gerwen and Lewis, while Bunting will get the chance to avenge his recent World Championship defeat to van Barneveld.

Exciting duo Huybrechts and Chisnall will also meet in Belfast, while Anderson takes on Wade in a battle of former Premier League champions and Taylor takes on Wright.

The return to Exeter’s Westpoint Arena on March 5 will open as Holland’s van Barneveld takes on Belgium’s Huybrechts before Wade meets Taylor, Lewis plays Bunting and Chisnall takes on Anderson either side of the rematch of the 2014 World Championship final between van Gerwen and Wright.

The St Helens rivals, Bunting and Chisnall, face off on Night Six in Nottingham, while the world’s top two players, van Gerwen and Taylor, meet in a repeat of the 2013 Premier League final.

The night also features a rematch of the 2011 Premier League final between Anderson and Lewis, while van Barneveld plays Wade and Huybrechts meets Wright.

World Champion Anderson returns to home soil in Scotland for Night Seven in Glasgow on March 19, as he takes on Belgian ace Huybrechts, while Lothian-born Wright will play Stephen Bunting at The SSE Hydro.

Taylor and van Barneveld will renew their rivalry in another Glasgow fixture, with Wade meeting Lewis and Chisnall taking on van Gerwen.

The Premier League then crosses the Irish Sea for Night Eight, with the five games at Dublin’s 3Arena including the all-Dutch rematch of last year’s final between van Barneveld and van Gerwen.

The other fixtures in Dublin see Taylor meet Huybrechts, Anderson face Bunting, Wright play Wade and Lewis taking on Chisnall.

Judgement Night, the season’s ninth league night, will see the stars head to Manchester for the decisive final fixtures before the bottom two players are eliminated.

World Champion Anderson will take on Premier League champion van Barneveld in Manchester, with Taylor taking on Chisnall in a repeat of November’s Grand Slam final, while Lewis plays Wright, Bunting meets Huybrechts and van Gerwen faces Wade.

Following Judgement Night, the remaining eight players face each other once more over the remaining six league nights, before the top four players progress to the Play-Offs at The O2 in London on Thursday May 21.

Betway Premier League Fixtures
Night One, Thursday February 5
First Direct Arena, Leeds
Dave Chisnall v Peter Wright
Raymond van Barneveld v Adrian Lewis
Kim Huybrechts v Michael van Gerwen
Gary Anderson v Phil Taylor
Stephen Bunting v James Wade
Tickets: 0844 248 1585 orwww.firstdirectarena.com

Night Two, Thursday February 12
BIC, Bournemouth
Peter Wright v Gary Anderson
Michael van Gerwen v Stephen Bunting
Adrian Lewis v Phil Taylor
James Wade v Kim Huybrechts
Dave Chisnall v Raymond van Barneveld
Tickets: 0844 576 3000 orwww.bhlivetickets.co.uk

Night Three, Thursday February 19
Echo Arena, Liverpool
James Wade v Dave Chisnall
Peter Wright v Raymond van Barneveld
Phil Taylor v Stephen Bunting
Michael van Gerwen v Gary Anderson
Adrian Lewis v Kim Huybrechts
Tickets: 0844 8000 400 or www.echoarena.com

Night Four, Thursday February 26
Odyssey Arena, Belfast
Kim Huybrechts v Dave Chisnall
Gary Anderson v James Wade
Michael van Gerwen v Adrian Lewis
Stephen Bunting v Raymond van Barneveld
Phil Taylor v Peter Wright
Tickets: 028 9073 9074 or www odysseyarena.com

Night Five, Thursday March 5
Westpoint Arena, Exeter
Raymond van Barneveld v Kim Huybrechts
James Wade v Phil Taylor
Adrian Lewis v Stephen Bunting
Peter Wright v Michael van Gerwen
Dave Chisnall v Gary Anderson
Tickets: 08444 99 99 55 or www.ticketzone.co.uk

Night Six, Thursday March 12
Capital FM Arena, Nottingham
Stephen Bunting v Dave Chisnall
Raymond van Barneveld v James Wade
Phil Taylor v Michael van Gerwen
Gary Anderson v Adrian Lewis
Kim Huybrechts v Peter Wright
Tickets: 0843 373 3000 orwww.capitalfmarena.com

Night Seven, Thursday March 19
The SSE Hydro, Glasgow
James Wade v Adrian Lewis
Peter Wright v Stephen Bunting
Raymond van Barneveld v Phil Taylor
Kim Huybrechts v Gary Anderson
Dave Chisnall v Michael van Gerwen
Tickets: 0844 395 4000 or www.ticketSOUP.com

Night Eight, Thursday March 26
3Arena, Dublin
Adrian Lewis v Dave Chisnall
Gary Anderson v Stephen Bunting
Peter Wright v James Wade
Michael van Gerwen v Raymond van Barneveld
Phil Taylor v Kim Huybrechts
Tickets: 0818 719 3000 (Ire), 0844 8472 455 (UK) or www.ticketmaster.ie

Judgement Night, Thursday April 2
The Manchester Arena
Michael van Gerwen v James Wade
Stephen Bunting v Kim Huybrechts
Gary Anderson v Raymond van Barneveld
Phil Taylor v Dave Chisnall
Adrian Lewis v Peter Wright
Tickets: 0844 847 8000 or www.eventim.co.uk

Following Week Nine, the bottom two players from the league table are eliminated. Revised fixtures for Weeks Ten-15 will be announced following Week Nine at www.pdc.tv, with the remaining eight players facing each other once more during the final six league nights.

Night Ten, Thursday April 9
Motorpoint Arena, Sheffield
Tickets: 0114 256 5656 orwww.motorpointarenasheffield.co.uk

Night 11, Thursday April 16
GE Oil & GAs Arena, Aberdeen
Tickets: 08444 77 9000 orwww.ticketmaster.co.uk/aecc

Night 12, Thursday April 23
Motorpoint Arena, Cardiff
Tickets: Sold Out

Night 13, Thursday April 30
The Barclaycard Arena, Birmingham
Tickets: 0844 338 8000 or www theticketfactory.com

Night 14, Thursday May 7
Metro Radio Arena, Newcastle
Tickets: 08444 93 6666 or www.eventim.co.uk

Night 15, Thursday May 14
The Brighton Centre
Tickets: 0844 847 1515 or www.ticketmaster.co.uk

Play-Offs, Thursday May 21
The O2, London
Tickets: 0844 856 0202 or www.axs.com

For full ticket information and Terms & Conditions, visit www.pdc.tv/tickets.

Tournament Format
The ten players will face each other once during the opening nine weeks. Following Week Nine, the bottom two players from the league table will be eliminated. From Weeks Ten-15, the remaining eight players will play each other once again. Following Week 15, the top four players will progress to the Play-Offs.

All league fixtures will be the best of 12 legs of 501. Once a player reaches seven legs, they have won the game and no further legs will be played.

Two points will be awarded for a win, one point will be awarded for a six-all draw and no points will be awarded for a defeat.

The player named on the left in the fixture will throw first in the opening leg of each game. This will be reversed in the second meeting (where applicable).

Should players be tied on points in the league table, Leg Difference will be the first deciding factor. If this is also a tie, then Legs Won Against Throw will be the next deciding factor, and any further tie would be split by a comparison of the relevant players’ three-dart tournament average at that stage.

All nights will begin at 7pm and be screened live on Sky Sports HD.