Watch coverage of the World Grand Prix semi-finals, live on Sky Sports Arena from 7pm on Sunday
By Paul Prenderville at the Ricoh Arena
Last Updated: 11/10/20 7:12am
Simon Whitlock and Dirk van Duijvenbode will meet in an unlikely World Grand prix semi-final on Sunday after the pair sent Michael van Gerwen and Gary Anderson packing in Coventry.
A tournament that had seen six of the eight seeds beaten in the first round had its biggest surprises on Saturday evening as 28-year-old aubergine farmer and world no 73 Van Duijvenbode stunned Anderson, only for world no 1 and five-time champion Van Gerwen to follow him out just over an hour later.
The other semi-final will see Gerwyn Price take on two-time runner-up Dave Chisnall – the Iceman the only remaining seed left after he avoided the same fate as Van Gerwen in the final match of the night against Jeffrey de Zwaan.
World Grand Prix – Saturday’s Quarter-Final results
|Dirk van Duijvenbode 3-1 Gary Anderson|
|Joe Cullen 2-3 Dave Chisnall|
|Michael van Gerwen 0-3 Simon Whitlock|
|Gerwyn Price 3-1 Jeffrey de Zwaan|
Van Gerwen stunned by brilliant Whitlock
Simon Whitlock produced a near flawless display to end Michael van Gerwen’s two-year reign as the World Grand Prix champion and keep alive his own title hopes just a matter of days after being added to the tournament.
Whitlock was a late alternative after Adrian Lewis tested positive for coronavirus on Tuesday, and he was at his brilliant best, taking out finishes of 107 and 100 on his way to an unlikely semi-final showdown with Dirk van Duijvenbode.
The Wizard defied a 108 average from Van Gerwen to take the opening set, a break of throw in the second leg thanks to a classy 107 finish proving decisive for the Aussie, who turned on the afterburners to win the second set.
Whitlock claimed all three legs, including a brilliant top-tops finish, on his way to a two-set advantage and Van Gerwen was left playing catch-up.
The Dutchman had no answer to Whitlock’s scoring and finishing, and while Van Gerwen’s misery on the outer ring continued, Whitlock was in unforgiving move as he sealed a second high-profile victory over MVG in the last three months.
The Aussie had beaten the world No 1 at the World Matchplay in July with an 11-4 second-round victory to end a run of 15 straight defeats to the Dutchman, and it was equally convincing on Saturday night.
Van Duijvenbode keeps dream alive
Dirk van Duijvenbode continued the week of his darting life by stunning Anderson to move into his first televised semi-final and a meeting with Whitlock for a place in Monday night’s final.
‘The Titan’, who won back his Tour Card for the third time at Q-School in January, proved too strong for Anderson with big scoring and an impressive display of finishing ensuring Anderson’s wait for a World Grand Prix crown goes on.
Van Duijvenbode bossed the early exchanges in the biggest match of his career – a classy 96 finish put the seal on the opening set.
Trailing 2-0 in the third set and standing on the brink of defeat, Anderson rallied to force a deciding leg where the Dutchman’s missed dart for the match was punished by the Scot, who pinned double top.
There was to be no comeback as Anderson, one leg away from defeat, took aim at the treble rather than the double to start the fourth leg and Van Duijvenbode pinned double top to mop up 54 and seal victory.
Van Duijvenbode’s previous best PDC performance was a semi-final at the Belgian Darts Championship earlier this year, but victory guaranteed him at least £25,000 and keeps him in the hunt for a maiden PDC title.
World Grand Prix – Sunday’s semi-finals
|Simon Whitlock vs Dirk van Duijvenbode|
|Dave Chisnall v Gerwyn Price|
Live World Grand Prix Darts
October 11, 2020, 7:00pm
In form Iceman too good for De Zwaan
Gerwyn Price ensured there will be at least one of the world’s top eight in the last four with a 3-1 victory over Jeffrey de Zwaan.
The Iceman has never gone beyond the quarter-finals of this event, but he did so by bossing his match with the Dutchman, also a late alternative after Stephen Bunting’s positive coronavirus test, from the off.
Price claimed the first four legs of the match as De Zwaan struggled to get going but the Black Cobra stopped the rot and forced the second set into a deciding leg.
With the winning post in sight, Price wobbled for the first time and De Zwaan claimed the third set before the Welshman lived up to his billing as the world No 3.
Having won three of the last four tournaments to be played, Price is the in-form player in the game and he claimed the three legs he needed to clinch another big semi-final – a spectacular 164 getting the job done.
Chisnall battles back to reach last four
Dave Chisnall survived a match littered with missed doubles to beat Joe Cullen in a last-leg decider and scramble into the semi-finals for the fourth time in the last eight years.
The pair missed 55 darts at doubles between them, Chizzy responsible for 33, but in the end Chisnall’s fight back from 2-0 for the second match in succession saw him into the last four.
Despite a fast start from Chisnall, which included a brilliant 150 finish to kick off the contest, it was Cullen who moved in front – but only after Chizzy, beaten by Van Gerwen in last year’s final, had missed nine darts to take the opening set.
A brilliant 120 from Cullen continued his momentum but as the second set also went the distance, Chisnall, remarkably missed another five set darts. Cullen missed six of his own but he pinned double seven to double his lead.
Chizzy hauled himself back into the match, sweeping the next three legs for the third set with another 150 finish the highlight before he edged a fraught fourth set with a sizzling 155 finish for a level contest.
Cullen fought back from 2-0 down in the decider but it was Chisnall who got over the line, fittingly in a contest full of missed chances he saw three match darts go begging before he pinned the winning double.
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