December 3, 2021

In-form Cross storms to ProTour title

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Rob Cross has continued his hot run of form, claiming a ProTour title in style in Barnsley; “It’s so surprising what a bit of confidence does,” said ‘Voltage’. “It’s taken a lot of work. For 18-20 months I’ve been terrible”

Last Updated: 21/10/21 7:40pm

Rob Cross is back to his best Rob Cross is back to his best

Rob Cross is back to his best

Rob Cross continued his stunning form with a ProTour title at Players Championship 26 in the PDC Super Series.

Voltage, fresh from his European Championship triumph earlier this month, dispensed of David Evans, John Henderson, Andy Hamilton, Peter Wright, Vincent Van der Voort and Madars Razma, before delivering a 8-6 win over Ryan Searle in the decider.

The former world champ recorded three-figure averages in five of his seven matches on a memorable day.

Cross dominated the final, taking out 124 on the bull to break in the opening leg, leading 2-0, 3-1 and 6-2 with some fine darts – including a pressure 96 in leg six to deny Searle a chance to level.

Searle took three legs in a row to reduce the gap to one leg at 6-5, but Cross produced a timely 14-darter to earn breathing space and responded to a 105 checkout from his opponent by finishing 76 to claim the title.

PDC Super Series 7 – The Winners

Players Championship 24 Dimitri Van den Bergh 8-5 Adrian Lewis
Players Championship 25 Callan Rydz 8-6 Gabriel Clemens
Players Championship 26 Rob Cross 8-6 Ryan Searle
Players Championship 27 Friday

“It’s great,” said Cross. “It’s so surprising what a bit of confidence does – I’ve played well this week.

“I feel like I’m never going to miss when I put that first dart in there. That’s a kick-start, and the confidence on top made me a winner today.

“It’s taken a lot of work. For 18-20 months I’ve been terrible.

“I seem to find that, when things all go wrong, you never enjoy it, and then all of a sudden you start to get a little bit of improvement and enjoy it a little bit more.

“I want to wear my heart on my sleeve, I want to enjoy it AND win. We’re going to ride this crest of a wave.”

Ryan Searle enjoyed an impressive run to the decider Ryan Searle enjoyed an impressive run to the decider

Ryan Searle enjoyed an impressive run to the decider

Birthday boy Searle, who turned 34 on Thursday, averaged over 103 against Robert Thornton and Mike De Decker as well as seeing off Daryl Gurney, Michael Smith and Nathan Aspinall in his run to a third ProTour final of 2021.

However, he was denied a second title of the year, and a third ProTour win, as Cross emerged victorious in a battle between two players who progressed from the PDC Unicorn Challenge Tour in 2016.

“Ryan’s brilliant, I’ve got a lot of admiration for him and for the last three months he’s played great,” added Cross. “He’s reaping the benefits and so he should.”

Latvia’s Madars Razma enjoyed his best run in a ProTour event this year, defeating top seed Joe Cullen and Nordic rival Darius Labanauskas on his way to the semi-finals, where he achieved his nine-darter in defeat to Cross.

Aspinall reached his third semi-final inside a month before losing out to Searle, having defeated top 20 stars Gary Anderson, Krzysztof Ratajski, Jose de Sousa and Dirk van Duijvenbode.

Van der Voort and Van Duijvenbode were joined in the quarter-finals by Michael Smith and Luke Woodhouse, while world number two Peter Wright lost out in the last 16.

Michael van Gerwen was defeated in the last 32 by Daryl Gurney as the three-time World Champion lost despite a 107 average for the second time in three days.

Friday sees PDC Super Series 7 conclude with Players Championship 27, as 128 players compete in the fourth ProTour event of the week.

Former Premier League champion Glen Durrant did not compete, having withdrawn on Wednesday after two disappointing first-round exits.

PDC Senior Titles 2021

6 Peter Wright
5 Jonny Clayton
4 Gerwyn Price
3 Jose De Sousa
2 Joe Cullen, Callan Rydz, Dimitri Van den Bergh, Rob Cross
1 11 players

Players Championship 26

Thursday October 21

Quarter-Finals
Madars Razma 6-4 Luke Woodhouse
Rob Cross 6-2 Vincent Van der Voort
Nathan Aspinall 6-4 Dirk van Duijvenbode
Ryan Searle 6-4 Michael Smith

Semi-Finals
Rob Cross 7-4 Madars Razma
Ryan Searle 7-5 Nathan Aspinall

Final
Rob Cross 8-6 Ryan Searle

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