MICHAEL VAN GERWEN turned on the style with the fourth highest average in BetVictor World Matchplay history as he swept Jamie Lewis aside 13-2 on Tuesday night, as Gerwyn Price stunned Adrian Lewis to join Peter Wright and Ian White in the quarter-finals in Blackpool.
World number one van Gerwen was at his brilliant, ruthless best as he powered past Lewis with a 110.93 average, which has only been bettered by Phil Taylor - on three occasions - in the 22-year history of the event.
Although Lewis shared the first two legs, he had no answer to van Gerwen's brilliant scoring and clinical finishing as the Dutchman reeled off nine successive legs.
The run included finishes of 100 - with two double tops - 91, 89 on the bull, 87 and 86 as well as an 11-dart finish, two 12-darters and four 14-dart legs.
Lewis landed double 11 to hit back in the 12th leg with a sparkling 13-darter, but van Gerwen landed 180s and another 11-darter in the next two legs to move 12-2 up before adding a 174 score to leave 32 as he sealed victory in style with a 13-dart finish.
"It's a statement to myself and the rest of the players," said van Gerwen. "Jamie was scoring okay but I didn't give him any chances and my finishing went in brilliantly, and I want to keep going like this.
"You don't do this average every day and it makes it a bit special - but it was only one game.
"I'm already looking forward to Thursday against Ian White and I want to concentrate on that and make sure I perform really well."
Van Gerwen will now take on Ian White in the quarter-finals, after the number nine seed produced an outstanding comeback to defeat Simon Whitlock 13-9 by reeling off seven successive legs.
A tight contest saw the opening ten legs all won with the throw, as White hit a 113 checkout and Whitlock fired in four 180s, before the Australian took three in a row to claim an 8-5 advantage.
White replied with a 13-darter before Whitlock enjoyed six perfect darts for the second time in the game, and though he again missed out on a nine-dart finish the Australia did take the leg for a 9-6 lead.
White, though, took out tops to hit back and then landed 180s in the next three legs to put himself ahead for the first time at 10-9.
He then finished 104 and traded 180s with Whitlock as he moved 12-9 up before landing double ten to move into the quarter-finals in Blackpool for the first time.
"It feels great and I'm delighted to be in the quarter-finals," said White, who knocked out Stephen Bunting in the first round. "I'm happy with the way things are going at the moment.
"I thought I was dead and buried at 9-6 and it just wasn't going right for me. but I wanted to take one leg at a time, and when I got back to nine-all I knew I could do it.
"I wanted to keep pressurising him and he didn't reply. The 180s came back towards the end and I was taking the doubles out in one dart."
World number four Adrian Lewis was sensationally knocked out 13-10 by Welsh newcomer Gerwyn Price, the former rugby ace who will compete in his first major quarter-final on Thursday night.
Price matched the two-time World Champion blow for blow during a thrilling opening, sharing the first four legs before taking three in a row to lead 5-2 with an in-running average of over 111.
Lewis hit back with an 11-darter, only to see Price take four of the next five to edge himself into a 9-4 advantage as the pair traded 13-dart legs.
Lewis landed scores of 177 and 180 in the next two legs as he pulled back to 9-6, only for Price to land double top to win three of the next four as he moved to the brink of the biggest win of his 18-month career.
Two missed match darts in the next allowed Lewis in on double two to keep his hopes alive, before he landed another 180 in a brilliant 12-darter and then hit double ten to pull back to 12-10.
Price, though, kicked off the next leg with a 180 - his eighth, to match Lewis' tally - before fittingly landing a third-dart double top to claim a famous win.
"It's unbelievable," said Price, who only joined the PDC circuit in January 2014. "My goal initially was to get through the first round and get my first win on TV, and today I just wanted to play well.
"I think I out-played Adrian for most of the game, apart from the last couple of legs where he came back, so I'm chuffed to bits. I wasn't nervous but maybe there was a bit of white line fever and he kept putting me under pressure.
"On Sunday I struggled with my scoring but my finishing got me through but tonight it came together. It hasn't sunk in yet - I can't wait to do it all again on Thursday."
Price now faces Peter Wright, the number five seed who held off the challenge of Andrew Gilding to reach his first World Matchplay quarter-final with a 13-7 win.
Gilding took out 100 for an 11-darter to open the game and also led 2-1 before Wright levelled and then broke with double 12 to move 3-2 up.
Gilding took out 121 and 74 to remain locked at four-all, but Wright found an extra gear to claim two big breaks of throw in a four-leg burst to move 8-4 up, hitting legs of 11, 12 and ten darts in the process and twice hitting seven perfect darts, missing treble 19 on both occasions in his bid for a nine-darter.
Gilding finished tops to win two of the next three legs to stay in touch at 10-7, but a 68 checkout gave Wright breathing space before he sealed victory with legs of 13 and 14 darts, which both featured 180s, as he moved into the last eight.
"It's fantastic to be through," said Wright. "There were patches of what my game should be all the time, and that's why I'm disappointed with my average but it's a win and I can improve now.
"I used to practice with Andrew before he turned professional with the PDC and he used to beat me all the time and I know how good he is but I got on top of him at the end."
The second round concludes on Tuesday, with the four games including reigning champion Phil Taylor's all-Stoke battle with Andy Hamilton.
2007 World Matchplay winner James Wade is up against Brendan Dolan, while World Champion Gary Anderson faces Austria's Mensur Suljovic and Dave Chisnall takes on World Youth Champion Keegan Brown.
Van Gerwen's victory has seen him cut to Evens with sponsors BetVictor to take the title on Sunday night, with Taylor the 10/3 second favourite and Anderson 4/1/
Wright's win has seen him reduced to 9/1 for the title, with White 33/1 and Price 50/1 following their second round victories.
BetVictor World Matchplay
Tuesday July 21
Peter Wright 13-7 Andrew Gilding
Simon Whitlock 9-13 Ian White
Michael van Gerwen 13-2 Jamie Lewis
Adrian Lewis 10-13 Gerwyn Price
Wednesday July 22 (7pm-11.30pm)
Dave Chisnall v Keegan Brown
James Wade v Brendan Dolan
Phil Taylor v Andy Hamilton
Gary Anderson v Mensur Suljovic
Best of 25 legs
* Each game must be won by two clear legs, with up to a maximum of five additional legs being played before the sixth "extra" leg is sudden-death. There will be no re-throw for the bull in this instance. For example, should a Second Round game (best of 25 legs) reach 15-15, then the 31st leg would be the final and deciding leg.
BetVictor World Matchplay
Outright Winner Odds
Evens Michael van Gerwen
10/3 Phil Taylor
4/1 Gary Anderson
9/1 Peter Wright
16/1 Dave Chisnall
20/1 James Wade
33/1 Ian White
50/1 Gerwyn Price
66/1 Keegan Brown
100/1 Brendan Dolan
125/1 Andy Hamilton
200/1 Mensur Suljovic
Odds courtesy www.betvictor.com and subject to fluctuation.
Peter Wright v Andrew Gilding
0-1 - Gilding makes an outstanding start, scoring 140, 121 and 140 before finishing 100 for an 11-darter to claim the opener.
1-1 - Wright takes out 41 on double eight to level.
1-2 - Tops sees Gilding move back ahead.
2-2 - Wright finishes 65 to square the contest once more.
3-2 - Wright breaks throw for the first time by landing double 12.
3-3 - Wright misses double eight to take out 127, and Gilding finishes 121 on the bull to break back and level.
4-3 - Wright scores 180 and 171 during the leg, and though he initially misses his chance to take the leg, Gilding is unable to land tops for a 110 finish as the number five seed returns to break once more on double six.
4-4 - Wright misses five darts at doubles to open up a two-leg lead, allowing Gilding in to take out 74 to level.
5-4 - Wright lands a maximum before completing an 11-darter on double 16 to break again and regain the lead.
6-4 - Wright tees up a possible nine-dart finish with two 180s, and lands a seventh perfect treble 20 before missing the treble 19 - but returns to finish another 11-darter to pull two legs clear of his rival.
7-4 - The former World Championship finalist continues his charge with another maximum before landing double six to move three legs clear.
8-4 - Wright again lands seven perfect dart, again missing out on a nine-dart finish on the treble 19 of the 141 combination - with Gilding landing a maximum in reply but only able to watch on as his opponent finishes double 16 for a ten-darter.
8-5 - Gilding wins his first leg in five by taking out 68 on tops.
9-5 - Wright escapes from two missed doubles when Gilding is unable to land a brace of darts at tops, with the colourful Scot returning on double six.
9-6 - Wright misses the bull for a 121 checkout, with Gilding stepping in this time to post tops as he cuts the gap to three legs.
10-6 - Wright kicks off another leg with a maximum - his eighth - before landing double nine to move three legs away from the quarter-finals.
10-7 - Gilding responds by finishing 86 on double eight.
11-7 - Wright finishes 68 on double 16 to edge closer to victory.
12-7 - Wright kicks off with a maximum and finishes double 18 to move to the brink of victory.
13-7 - Wright takes out 77 on double ten to move through to the quarter-finals for the first time.
Simon Whitlock v Ian White
1-0 - Whitlock holds throw in the opening leg by finishing double ten.
1-1 - The Australian lands a 180 before White levels by taking out 40.
2-1 - Double ten sees Whitlock edge back ahead.
2-2 - White finishes 56 on double ten as he squares the game.
3-2 - Whitlock takes out 32 to move himself back in front.
3-3 - Whitlock misses the bull to finish 126, and White steps in to check out 113 on double 18.
4-3 - Whitlock lands a 180 and double 14 to edge back ahead.
4-4 - White fires in a 174 score before double 16 levels.
5-4 - Both players open with 180s before Whitlock lands another maximum to set up a possible nine-darter - hitting a seventh treble 20 before missing the treble 15 on the 141 combination, although he returns to claim the leg.
5-5 - White levels once again, this time hitting tops.
6-5 - Whitlock edges back in front.
7-5 - The game's first break of throw goes to Whitlock, who capitalises on White's missed doubles by finishing 66 on double 16.
8-5 - White opens with a 180, but Whitlock wins his third successive leg by finishing 40.
8-6 - White fires in a 180 before taking out double eight for a 13-dart finish.
9-6 - Whitlock tees up a possible nine-darter for the second time with two 180s, this time missing the seventh treble 20 before he again returns to take the legs.
9-7 - Tops sees White reduce the gap to two legs once more.
9-8 - White fires in a 180 before claiming his first break of throw in the game by landing double 16.
9-9 - White lands his fifth maximum and has enough breathing space to initially miss three doubles across two visits before returning on double seven to level.
9-10 - White posts his sixth 180 of the game and claims a fourth successive leg by posting double two to punish four misses from Whitlock.
9-11 - White's run continues as he takes out 104 on double 16 to move two legs clear.
9-12 - Both players land their seventh 180 of a fine contest before White takes out 46 on double 16 to move to the brink of victory.
9-13 - White initially misses one match dart, at tops to finish 114, but returns to land double ten to seal his first quarter-final in Blackpool.
Michael van Gerwen v Jamie Lewis
1-0 - van Gerwen makes an ideal start with a superb 13-darter as double 16 gives him the lead.
1-1 - van Gerwen opens with a 180, but Lewis levels on double ten.
2-1 - The top seed holds throw to regain the edge.
3-1 - van Gerwen lands a 177 before finishing 86 for a break of throw.
4-1 - van Gerwen misses the bull for a 170 finish, but returns to take out double eight for a three-leg lead.
5-1 - van Gerwen scores 170 during the leg before taking out 91 in two darts to win a fourth straight leg.
6-1 - A fifth consecutive leg goes to the world number one as he fires in a 180 and double four.
7-1 - van Gerwen finishes 87 on double nine to continue his charge.
8-1 - The Dutchman's relentless finishing continues as he takes out 100 with two double tops.
9-1 - Lewis misses the bull, allowing van Gerwen to take his eighth straight leg on double four.
10-1 - Lewis leaves 36, only to see van Gerwen power home the bull to finish 89.
10-2 - The pair trade 180s before both missing the final double for a ton-plus checkout, and Lewis then returns to win his first leg in ten by posting double 11.
11-2 - van Gerwen posts his fourth 180 before a third-dart double five moves him two legs away from the win.
12-2 - Lewis' second 180 of the game is followed once again by a maximum from van Gerwen, and when the Welsh youngster misses double nine to finish 85, the top seed takes out 82 with a bullseye, double 16 combination. Lewis' average is now above 100 despite winning just two legs, with van Gerwen around 110!
13-2 - van Gerwen piles in a 174 score to leave 32 before finishing a 13-darter on double 16 to seal an outstanding victory with a 110.93 average - the fourth highest in World Matchplay history.
Adrian Lewis v Gerwyn Price
0-1 - Lewis lands a 180, but Price takes out 75 to break throw in the opening leg.
1-1 - Both players land 180s, and when Price misses tops to take out 116 the Stoke ace finishes 81 on double 13 to break back and level.
2-1 - Price fires in a 180 to leave 87, only to see Lewis take out a brilliant 136 checkout.
2-2 - Price takes out 76 on tops to square the contest.
2-3 - Price posts another 180 as he leaves 60, and when Lewis misses the bull the Welshman capitalises on tops to break and regain the lead.
2-4 - Tops to complete a 43 checkout sees Price move two legs clear.
2-5 - Price posts his fourth 180 of the game and then takes out 81 on double 12 to break throw once more - taking his average to 111.43.
3-5 - Lewis hits back superbly with a maximum of his own before checking out 81 on double 12.
3-6 - Price responds with his fifth maximum before double eight sees him break throw and regain his cushion.
3-7 - Price posts another 180 and then finishes double ten to move four legs clear of the world number four.
4-7 - Double 18 sees Lewis hit back.
4-8 - Lewis fires in a 180, but Price is first to a double and lands double five to move four legs clear.
4-9 - Price breaks throw with a third-dart double top to extend his advantage.
5-9 - Lewis kicks off with a 177 and goes on to break throw to reduce the gap to four legs.
6-9 - Both players land 180s, with Lewis returning from a missed bullseye to finish double eight for a 14-darter.
6-10 - Price initially misses the bull to finish 130, but Lewis is unable to take out 98 to allow the Welshman back in on tops.
7-10 - Lewis fires in tops to hit back.
7-11 - Price moves two legs away from victory by finishing 65 on tops.
7-12 - The Welshman moves a leg away from a huge win, capitalising on Lewis' missed bullseye by finishing 82 on tops.
8-12 - Lewis lands a 180 but misses five darts at double 16 and eight - only for Price to miss two match darts, allowing the former finalist back on double two to stay in the game.
9-12 - Lewis opens with his eighth 180 of the game before taking out 100 with two double tops to continue his revival.
10-12 - Lewis misses tops to finish 157, but Price misses a single 16 to leave tops to allow the world number four back on double ten to reduce the gap to two legs.
10-13 - Price opens with a 180, and when Lewis misses double 18 to finish 109, the Welshman takes his chance to claim victory by pinning a third-dart double top to reach the quarter-finals on his World Matchplay debut.