Smith reaches World Championship final with win over Aspinall

Michael Smith booked his place in the World Championship final for the first time as he defeated an inspired Nathan Aspinall 6-3 at Alexandra Palace.

Smith – who will be vying to win his maiden major PDC title on New Year’s Day – was emotional after a terrific semi-final encounter with Stockport’s Aspinall.

The St Helens ace came flying out of the blocks as he raced into a 2-0 lead in sets – whitewashing 27-year-old Aspinall in both of the opening two sets.

After he put his first set on the board, we saw a different Nathan Aspinall as he halved Smith’s lead with a phenomenal 13-darter, to win set three in the deciding leg.

‘The Asp’ continued to impress; legs of 13, 15 and 12 darts levelled up the tie at two-a-piece as he defied a 136 checkout from Smith. Aspinall pinned a sublime 11-dart leg to set the ground running in the following set, only for Premier League finalist Smith to reel off three of the next four legs – hitting a crucial dart at double nine to restore his advantage.

Aspinall took the next set to level up proceedings at 3-3, but the luck stopped there for the former World Youth Championship finalist as Smith reeled off the next three legs in succession and pinned a magnificent 121 outshot to clinch his spot in the World Championship final and pocket £200,000.

‘Bully Boy’ managed to pin 17 maximums in a thrilling affair with Stockport’s Aspinall and set a new record for the most individual 180s in a PDC World Championship semi-final.

After his 105.22 average, over 51% checkout rate and 17 maximums, it’s safe to say that Michael Smith will fancy his chances whoever he faces in New Year’s Day’s final.

About The Author

Ben Hudd Ben is a dedicated sports writer and aspiring sports journalist, covering all aspects of darts for the ever-growing Darts Planet TV. He has a passion for sport, particularly darts, cricket and football.

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