Raymond van Barneveld took Nottingham by storm in the Premier League, as he recorded the highest TV average of his professional career!
112.28 – and it could have been ever higher, as he beat Kevin Painter 8-6 in an all Unicorn thriller....Painter averaged 100 but for ‘The Artist’ it was a 4th straight defeat.
Elsewhere in week 9 of the McCoys Premier League, Phil Taylor moved effortlessly into the play-offs despite a terrific battling effort from Andy Hamilton, James Wade was involved in controversy in his defeat to Adrian Lewis, but Gary Anderson’s return to action ended in bitter disappointment.
“I was so focused so I didn’t realise how high the averages were,” said the Barneveld. “But it is a great achievement for me. It shows that I am playing well and being more consistent, but I also know that if I am going to win the Premier League, I will probably have to go higher than 112!”
But Barneveld was imperious, and when he plays like that, it is a joy to watch.
4-2 up at the break with an average of 116.75 at that stage and he extended that lead to 6-3 with a third 11 dart leg....it was that good!
In that 9th leg, Barney hit six perfect darts.....but you have to give credit to Kevin Painter, who never knows when he’s beaten.....a 90 check-out on the bull, followed by a 1`20 finish and he got it back to 6-7.
Barney though wasn’t going to be denied and d10 secured the points as he took another big step towards the semi-finals.
There was certainly no love lost between James Wade and Adrian Lewis in another high quality encounter....there appeared to be a loose floorboard close to the oche and it caused quite a stir between the pair.
Wade had lead 4-2 despite a 110 average from his opponent at that stage....and the World Champion stormed back, winning four consecutive legs to take control.
A third maximum from Wade kept him in it at 5-6, but Lewis produced a 12 darter and followed it with a 6th 180 and 78 check-out to claim the points.
Lewis defended himself after the match which ended with a cursory handshake....and not a great start to Wade’s birthday weekend, as he turns 29 on Good Friday.
Taylor was pushed all the way by Andy Hamilton, who won the opening couple of legs....Taylor then reeled off four on the trot and looked to be in charge.
But we all know that Hamilton never gives up....a brilliant 141 finish, a couple of 180s and a 100 check-out and he was right back in it, only a leg behind.
Taylor was missing a lot of doubles, despite landing five 180s...he missed two more at d16 to win the match 8-5 and ‘The Hammer’ nailed a fantastic 86 on the bull to force the decider.
Hamilton had one dart at the bull to snatch a point, but after he missed, Taylor took out D8 to make it eight wins on the spin, as he looks forward to those semi-finals.
You had to feel sorry for Gary Anderson as he slumped to a fourth straight defeat....he simply never got going, despite a 143 finish to level the match at one all against Simon Whitlock.
The Aussie, who was whitewashed a week ago in Cardiff by James Wade, had a point to prove and he did just that....the Unicorn star failed to fire on his scoring and Whitlock won at a canter, hitting four 180s to Anderson’s three.
And it now becomes a huge week for the Scot in Sheffield next Thursday as he plays both Wade and Hamilton and probably has to win them both.
Results week 9:
Kevin Painter 6-8 Raymond van Barneveld
Adrian Lewis 8-5 James Wade
Andy Hamilton 6-8 Phil Taylor
Simon Whitlock 8-2 Gary Anderson
Latest PL Table:
1 – Phil Taylor – 17pts
2 – Simon Whitlock – 10pts
3 – Raymond van Barneveld – 10pts
4 – Adrian Lewis – 9pts
5 – James Wade – 8pts
6 – Gary Anderson – 6pts
7 – Kevin Painter – 6pts
8 – Andy Hamilton – 6pts
Week 10 Sheffield Thursday April 12:
James Wade v Gary Anderson
Simon Whitlock v Kevin Painter
Phil Taylor v Raymond van Barneveld
Andy Hamilton v Gary Anderson
By STUART PYKE in Nottingham
Photos courtesy Chris Sargeant