Clayton edges MVG in stunning comeback as Anderson impresses

Jonny Clayton denied reigning three-time Grand Slam of Darts champion Michael van Gerwen in an absolute thriller as the cross-code event came to life in Wolverhampton.

‘The Ferret’ was somehow staying with the world number one despite van Gerwen threatening the world record average for much of the contest. It looked like MVG had done enough when he took a 4-2 lead, but Clayton came back in style, surviving three match darts from the Dutchman in the eighth leg before a 180 and a 137 in the decider helped him to go top of Group A. He still hasn’t done enough to qualify for the second round though, as Gary Robson produced a similar comeback to beat Joe Murnan 5-4 after being 4-1 behind. ‘Big Robbo’ and Clayton face off on Tuesday with the Austrian Darts Open winner only needing three legs to progress at the expense of the BDO star. MVG should still progress to the knockout stages with a final round match-up with Joe Murnan to come.

Following the incredible game between MVG and Clayton, Gary Anderson managed to usurp both the pair’s averages with a 112.54 in a 5-1 demolition of Ian ‘Diamond’ White. ‘The Flying Scotsman’ began each of the first three legs with a maximum, and the Dutch Darts Champion couldn’t get close to him as he sealed his place in the last 16 with 71% on the doubles. That result also meant Steve Hine was eliminated from the Grand Slam after he lost 5-2 to an impressive Michael Unterbuchner. The BDO World Trophy runner-up now has a winner takes all clash with Ian White later in the week.

As Michael van Gerwen’s 22-game winning streak in this tournament came to an end with his first loss in the group stage since 2011, James Wade extended his current unbeaten run in all competitions to 12 games. ‘The Machine’ was involved in a quality contest with Keegan Brown, both players averaging well over 100, but three ton-plus finishes saw the European Champion through to the second round in typical ‘Wading’ style at the expense of Mark Webster. ‘The Spider’ fell at the hands of another solid BDO performance, going down 5-3 to Wesley Harms, who faces Keegan Brown on Tuesday for a place in the next round in Wolverhampton.

Group B was perhaps the most dramatic of the eight on Sunday with Raymond van Barneveld getting a lifeline from World Master Adam Smith-Neale, surviving four match darts to keep his hopes of a second Grand Slam triumph alive. However, he will likely have to beat Michael Smith to extend his stay at Aldersley Leisure Village after ‘The Bullyboy’ saw off Krzysztof Ratajski in another deciding leg with 5/7 on the checkouts. The afternoon session also saw some quality darts, maybe most notably in Group G where Scott Mitchell averaged nearly 100 to all but eliminate Martin Schindler after a 5-1 success. That also paved the way for Stephen Bunting to move closer to progression after a fantastic win over world number seven Mensur Suljović, 5-3 the scoreline in that one.

The World Champion Rob Cross certainly produced a better performance than his scrappy win over Mark McGeeney on Saturday, but he needed a decider to see off Dimitri Van den Bergh and move through to the last 16 in Wolverhampton. That result sent Ryan Searle packing after his 5-3 loss against McGeeney, although the man from the south-west still has a game to play on Monday against Cross. McGeeney and Van den Bergh will play each other for the other spot in the knockouts. Another eye-catching encounter saw Gerwyn Price’s plumage on full show as he edged past two-time Lakeside Champion Glen Durrant. Elsewhere in Group F, Simon Whitlock came through a more scrappy game against Andrew Gilding five legs to two.

Jim Williams was a rare BDO player to come away with a loss on Sunday at the Grand Slam as Josh Payne rectified his errors from day one’s loss to Max Hopp with a 5-2 win. In the same group, Peter Wright collected his second consecutive win with a 98 average and a 56% checkout rate against Hopp. The world number two will hope to seal his spot in the last 16 when he takes on Payne on Monday evening. Stay tuned to dartsplanet.tv for a round-up of the final round robin games from Groups E-H as those sixteen players look to follow on from the spectacular darts seen on Sunday evening from the likes of Gary Anderson and Jonny Clayton.

 

2018 bwin Grand Slam of Darts
Schedule of Play
Saturday November 10
Afternoon Session (1300 GMT)

Groups E-H First Matches
Max Hopp 5-3 Josh Payne (E)
Gerwyn Price 5-2 Andrew Gilding (F)
Dimitri Van den Bergh 5-3 Ryan Searle (H)
Stephen Bunting 5-3 Martin Schindler (G)
Glen Durrant 5-1 Simon Whitlock (F)
Mensur Suljovic 5-2 Scott Mitchell (G)
Rob Cross 5-2 Mark McGeeney (H)
Peter Wright 5-4 Jim Williams (E)

Evening Session (1900 GMT)
Groups A-D First Matches
Keegan Brown 5-4 Mark Webster (C)
Jonny Clayton 5-2 Joe Murnan (A)
Ian White 5-1 Steve Hine (D)
Michael Smith 5-3 Adam Smith-Neale (B)
James Wade 5-0 Wesley Harms (C)
Krzysztof Ratajski 5-3 Raymond van Barneveld (B)
Gary Anderson 5-2 Michael Unterbuchner (D)
Michael van Gerwen 5-1 Gary Robson (A)

2018 bwin Grand Slam of Darts
Schedule of Play
Saturday November 10
Afternoon Session (1300 GMT)

Groups E-H First Matches
Max Hopp 5-3 Josh Payne (E)
Gerwyn Price 5-2 Andrew Gilding (F)
Dimitri Van den Bergh 5-3 Ryan Searle (H)
Stephen Bunting 5-3 Martin Schindler (G)
Glen Durrant 5-1 Simon Whitlock (F)
Mensur Suljovic 5-2 Scott Mitchell (G)
Rob Cross 5-2 Mark McGeeney (H)
Peter Wright 5-4 Jim Williams (E)

Evening Session (1900 GMT)
Groups A-D First Matches
Keegan Brown 5-4 Mark Webster (C)
Jonny Clayton 5-2 Joe Murnan (A)
Ian White 5-1 Steve Hine (D)
Michael Smith 5-3 Adam Smith-Neale (B)
James Wade 5-0 Wesley Harms (C)
Krzysztof Ratajski 5-3 Raymond van Barneveld (B)
Gary Anderson 5-2 Michael Unterbuchner (D)
Michael van Gerwen 5-1 Gary Robson (A)

Sunday November 11
Afternoon Session (1300 GMT)

Groups E-H Second Matches
Ryan Searle v Mark McGeeney (H)
Josh Payne v Jim Williams (E)
Martin Schindler v Scott Mitchell (G)
Simon Whitlock v Andrew Gilding (F)
Mensur Suljovic v Stephen Bunting (G)
Rob Cross v Dimitri Van den Bergh (H)
Gerwyn Price v Glen Durrant (F)
Peter Wright v Max Hopp (E)

Evening Session (1900 GMT)
Groups A-D Second Matches
Steve Hine v Michael Unterbuchner (D)
Joe Murnan v Gary Robson (A)
Mark Webster v Wesley Harms (C)
Raymond van Barneveld v Adam Smith-Neale (B)
James Wade v Keegan Brown (C)
Michael Smith v Krzysztof Ratajski (B)
Michael van Gerwen v Jonny Clayton (A)
Gary Anderson v Ian White (D)

2018 bwin Grand Slam of Darts
Schedule of Play
Sunday November 11
Afternoon Session (1300 GMT)

Groups E-H Second Matches
Ryan Searle 3-5 Mark McGeeney (H)
Josh Payne 5-2 Jim Williams (E)
Martin Schindler 1-5 Scott Mitchell (G)
Simon Whitlock 5-2 Andrew Gilding (F)
Mensur Suljovic 3-5 Stephen Bunting (G)
Rob Cross 5-4 Dimitri Van den Bergh (H)
Gerwyn Price 5-4 Glen Durrant (F)
Peter Wright 5-2 Max Hopp (E)

Evening Session (1900 GMT)
Groups A-D Second Matches
Steve Hine 2-5 Michael Unterbuchner (D)
Joe Murnan 4-5 Gary Robson (A)
Mark Webster 3-5 Wesley Harms (C)
Raymond van Barneveld 5-4 Adam Smith-Neale (B)
James Wade 5-3 Keegan Brown (C)
Michael Smith 5-4 Krzysztof Ratajski (B)
Michael van Gerwen 4-5 Jonny Clayton (A)
Gary Anderson 5-1 Ian White (D)

Monday November 12
Evening Session (1900 GMT)

Groups E-H Final Matches
Rob Cross v Ryan Searle (H)
Andrew Gilding v Glen Durrant (F)
Simon Whitlock v Gerwyn Price (F)
Mensur Suljovic v Martin Schindler (G)
Stephen Bunting v Scott Mitchell (G)
Max Hopp v Jim Williams (E)
Peter Wright v Josh Payne (E)
Dimitri Van den Bergh v Mark McGeeney (H)

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About The Author

Jamie Cameron @wwfcofficial and darts. Write for @the92blog and @TheMaximum180.

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