Man of the moment Michael Smith continued his title spree by claiming glory at the inaugural Bahrain Darts Masters with…
Man of the moment Michael Smith continued his title spree by claiming glory at the inaugural Bahrain Darts Masters with victory over Gerwyn Price in the final.
Little over a week after being crowned World Champion for the first time, Smith picked up from where he left off at Alexandra Palace by capturing the season’s first World Series silverware.
The success marked Smith’s third televised title in as many months, after the Grand Slam of Darts and World Championship triumphs which have catapulted him up to the top of the world rankings.
Smith had shone in his first round win over Abdulnasser Yusuf on Thursday, but had to come from 3-1 down to defeat Dimitri van den Bergh 6-4 in the Quarter-Finals and was also behind early on in his semi-final with Raymond van Barneveld.
The St Helens star showed his quality to battle back for a 7-5 win, before overcoming Price 8-6 in the final.
The pair shared the opening four legs – which included Price landing six perfect darts in leg three – before Smith broke for the first time to lead 3-2.
The next two legs also went with throw before Smith posted legs of 11 and 13 darts in a burst to surge into a 7-3 advantage.
Price fired in an 11-darter and punished missed match darts from Smith in leg 12 as he hit back to trail just 7-6, but he was unable to finish 97 to force a deciding leg which allowed his rival in to post double five and finally seal glory.
“I’m delighted,” said Smith. “I’ve got my third World Series title and my wife told me to bring this trophy back, and I’ve finally got it.
“I was far from perfect tonight but I’ve got to take my chances when they come.
“I thought it might not be my time but I dug deep and came back. Thankfully for me, Gez missed and I managed to hit the double five.
“I’ve got to keep taking the rough with the smooth and keep riding this wave – hopefully it continues. I’m so happy to win this and it’s been a great week to visit Bahrain for the first time.”
Price had defeated Jonny Clayton 6-4 in the Quarter-Finals – landing a superb 144 checkout during the all-Welsh contest – before seeing off Rob Cross 7-3 in the Semi-Finals.
Van Barneveld produced an outstanding comeback from 5-1 down to edge out Luke Humphries 6-5 in their Last Eight tie, while Cross also won in a deciding leg against Peter Wright – who had hit back from 5-2 down to take their contest the distance.
The World Series of Darts continues with the Nordic Darts Masters in Copenhagen from January 20-21.
Bahrain Darts Masters 2023 Day Two Results
Friday January 13
Michael Smith 6-4 Dimitri Van den Bergh
Raymond van Barneveld 6-5 Luke Humphries
Peter Wright 5-6 Rob Cross
Gerwyn Price 6-4 Jonny Clayton
Michael Smith 7-5 Raymond van Barneveld
Rob Cross 3-7 Gerwyn Price
Michael Smith 8-6 Gerwyn Price
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