De Zwaan crushes Cross at the European Grand Prix as Beaton sees off Suljovic

Jamie Shaw in PDC Darts News 11 May 2019
Dutch ace De Zwaan celebrates (credit:Lawrence Lustig/PDC)

Jeffrey de Zwaan claimed a first victory over Rob Cross at the fifth attempt as he progressed to the Last 16 of the European Grand Prix in Sindelfingen on Saturday, while Steve Beaton edged out Mensur Suljovic in a deciding leg.

De Zwaan, who had suffered defeat to Cross in both the World Championship and Premier League, as well as last week's Austrian Open, gained his revenge with a 6-3 triumph as he punished ten costly missed darts at doubles from the world number two.

"That feels amazing," said De Zwaan, a recent Players Championship event winner.

"I know that I can bring the same game from the floor onto the stage - the confidence is there and the belief is there."

De Zwaan will now face Michael Smith in Sunday's Third Round after the world finalist landed seven 180s in a 6-4 victory over Krzysztof Ratajski to reach the final day of a European Tour event for the first time this season.

"I should have won that game six nil," admitted Smith. "I'm glad I dug deep there, I had to get that win because I think that would have killed me for the rest of the year in these Europeans."

Former Lakeside Champion Beaton continued his sublime form on the European Tour as he denied crowd favourite Suljovic in a last-leg decider after the Austrian had missed three match darts.

Beaton now faces a Third Round tie against Ryan Searle, who defeated Glen Durrant in Friday's opener before receiving a bye following the late withdrawal of James Wade.

Defending champion Michael van Gerwen continued his incredible winning run in last-leg deciders as he denied a plucky Brendan Dolan to keep his push for a fifth European Tour title of 2019 on track. 

Dolan had taken victory when the pair met in the Danish Darts Open in 2018, and led 1-0, 3-2, 4-3 and 5-4 during a tight battle.

However, Van Gerwen followed up a 132 bull checkout from leg three with a crucial 94 combination in leg ten before taking victory with a 14-darter - extending his winning record in deciding legs on the European Tour to 24 in the process.

"I'm really glad I won but I had to work really hard for this," said Van Gerwen. "I didn't feel confident - you could see it on my doubles - but tomorrow's a different day."

In-form Jamie Hughes missed double 12 for a nine-dart finish during his superb 6-3 win over Adrian Lewis, with the Tipton ace averaging 104 in moving through to face former BDO foe Mark McGeeney.

McGeeney's impressive European Tour debut continued with a 6-5 win over Joe Cullen as the Stockport thrower followed an earlier 135 checkout with a 14-darter in the deciding leg.

Grand Slam champion Gerwyn Price averaged 103 and finished six doubles from ten attempts in a superb 6-1 win over Northern Irish newcomer Gavin Carlin.

The Welshman will now meet number 15 seed Darren Webster - who was a narrow 6-5 winner against Vincent van der Voort - coming from 4-3 down to edge through.

Jonny Clayton battled his way to a 6-4 victory over Ross Smith to set up a show-down with Peter Wright, with the six-time European Tour winner also having found himself 2-1 down against Dutch debutant Niels Zonneveld before pulling away to win 6-4.

James Richardson will take on Van Gerwen in Round Three after seeing off Mevryn King 6-3 courtesy of a run of four consecutive legs in a thrilling contest which saw both players average in excess of 100 and produce six 180s apiece.

Nathan Aspinall silenced the Sindelfingen crowd as he gained some measure of revenge for his loss in the 2015 World Youth Championship final to Max Hopp with an impressive 6-3 success.

"That's the hardest game I've played in my life - I've never played in an atmosphere like that," said Aspinall.

"It was really hard. Max has turned German darts around so full credit to him, so I'm so happy to win. I owe him that for the final! 

"It's another tick in my career that I've handled myself well tonight and I'm proud."

Aspinall's third round opponent will be Daryl Gurney, who survived three missed match darts from Chris Dobey in his comeback from 5-2 down to snatch a 6-5 win.

Ian White, the runner-up to Van Gerwen in the German Open and Austrian Open over the past fortnight, also escaped missed match darts before edging past World Youth Champion Dimitri Van den Bergh 6-5.

White opens Sunday afternoon's Third Round against a former World Youth Champion, after Keegan Brown claimed a 6-2 win over Ricky Evans, taking out 112 and 107 in a run of four straight legs for victory.


European Darts Grand Prix 2019 Results


Saturday May 11

Second Round

Afternoon Session
Michael Smith 6-4 Krzysztof Ratajski
Joe Cullen 5-6 Mark McGeeney
Jonny Clayton 6-4 Ross Smith
Mervyn King 3-6 James Richardson
Ricky Evans 2-6 Keegan Brown
Ian White 6-5 Dimitri Van den Bergh
Gerwyn Price 6-1 Gavin Carlin

Evening Session
Rob Cross 3-6 Jeffrey de Zwaan
Darren Webster 6-5 Vincent van der Voort
Daryl Gurney 6-5 Chris Dobey
Mensur Suljovic 5-6 Steve Beaton
Adrian Lewis 3-6 Jamie Hughes
Max Hopp 3-6 Nathan Aspinall
Michael van Gerwen 6-5 Brendan Dolan
Peter Wright 6-4 Niels Zonneveld



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De Zwaan crushes Cross at the European Grand Prix as Beaton sees off Suljovic

Jeffrey de Zwaan claimed a first victory over Rob Cross at the fifth attempt as he progressed to the Last 16 of the European Grand Prix in Sindelfingen on Saturday, while Steve Beaton edged out Mensur Suljovic in a deciding leg.

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