Gerwyn Price’s Premier League hopes were left hanging by a thread after he was outplayed by leader Jonny Clayton in London.
The Iceman went into the penultimate night of the regular season just two points behind Peter Wright, in the all-important fourth spot, after winning in Sheffield last week. But Price never looked capable of seeing off his Welsh compatriot, who coasted to a 6-3 victory.
It completed a difficult few days for Price, who was embroiled in an on-stage bust-up with Adrian Lewis after losing to Jackpot in the Czech Open last weekend. To add insult to injury, Wright defeated the returning James Wade 6-3 to move four clear of Price while Joe Cullen overtook The Iceman with an impressive 6-1 win over Gary Anderson to keep his own play-off hopes alive.
“I actually thought he would beat Jonny tonight,” said Sky Sports commentator and former BDO world champion Mark Webster. “But he didn’t get out of the blocks early enough.
"He wasn’t at it, Gerwyn, maybe the pressure got to him. He knows he’s got to be near perfect. He said he had to win one of the two nights, it’s going to have to be Newcastle now.”
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In the other quarter-final, Michael Smith won a scrappy match against Michael van Gerwen, but only just. Smith started like a train and looked capable of completing a rare whitewash at one stage.
But Bully Boy lost his way down the final straight as Van Gerwen upped his game slightly. It went to a final-leg decider and the Dutchman had darts to win it but, in keeping with his performance, couldn’t convert. Smith finally closed it out on double 16 but was clearly frustrated at the narrow margin of the victory.
The semi-finals saw Smith face Clayton and Cullen go up against Wright.
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