Suzuki and Winstanley set to contest world final while Durrant prevails

Lorraine Winstanley and Japan’s Mikuru Suzuki will contest Saturday’s ladies’ World Championship final after the pair progressed at the Lakeside, while two-time defending champion Glen Durrant prevailed.

Suzuki – a two-time Winmau World Masters quarter-finalist – booked her place in the final of the 2019 Ladies’ World Championship after completed a 2-0 whitewashing of Plymouth’s Maria O’Brien.

The 36-year-old has taken the Asian game by storm in recent years, winning 18 consecutive Darts Live staged events in an unbeaten streak stretching back over 12 months.

It was a scintillating 106 checkout from Japan’s Suzuki that proved the difference between the pair in the opening set, but that moment of brilliance proved crucial in such a short format.

A 3-1 win in the second set secured the history-making victory for Suzuki as she became the first ever Japanese thrower to make the final in any form of World Championship.

The Japanese sensation will face Lorraine Winstanley in Saturday’s final after the Buxton-based ace saw off her good friend Anastasia Dobromyslova 2-1 at the Lakeside.

After four-time defending champion Lisa Ashton was dumped out in the opening round, Dobromyslova – who was fresh from her PDC World Darts Championship exploits prior to the BDO event held at the Lakeside – was the heavy favourite to claim her fourth world title. But, that wasn’t to be as world number one, Winstanley, ensured that a new name will be engraved on the prestigious trophy.

Russia’s Dobromyslova got off to a flying start as she pinned a maximum with her first visit to the board, before denying a 98 checkout from the world number one to take the first set and immediately stack a host of pressure on the shoulders of Winstanley – who was looking to emulate her husband Dean in reaching the final at the Lakeside.

Dobromyslova took the first leg of the following set, only for Winstanley to reel off six legs in succession, including a 3-0 whitewashing in the final set, to seal her place in the final.

Two-time and defending champion, Glen Durrant, extended his winning streak on the Lakeside stage as he pulled off a hard-fought 5-2 victory over Northern Ireland’s Kyle McKinstry.

‘Duzza’ hit seven maximums and averaged 98.02 in a convincing victory over the reigning England Open winner. It was McKinstry who took a 1-0 lead as he denied finishes of 111 and 107 from Durrant in a high-quality opening set.

The Middlesbrough man edged through the second set of proceedings, pinning a vital dart at double one with ‘The Village Man’ day on tops for a 2-0 lead. That dart could well have changed the outcome of a real close encounter as Durrant gained the lead for the first time in match, taking the third set in just 40 darts, including a 12-darter and a 124 outshot. Durrant then started to plough away as he took the next set, denying a 116 checkout from McKinstry before adding to his advantage in set five, pinning double ten to gain a 4-1 lead and move on the brink of a spot in the World Championship semi-finals once again.

The Northern Irishman ended the drought as he clinched his second set with a 3-1 win, before 13, 15 and 18-dart legs sealed a 5-2 win for Durrant. Middlesbrough’s Durrant will face Jim Williams for a spot in the World Championship final, after the Welshman prevailed in a thrilling encounter with 2015 World Champion Scott Mitchell.

Wales’ Williams has been labelled the ‘best player in the world’ coming into the tournament by world number one Mark McGeeney, and definitely lived up to that statement as he pinned 13 maximums and a 93.27 average en route to an emphatic victory over reigning Gold Cup and German Open champion, Mitchell.

Mitchell kicked off proceedings as he produced back-to-back 13-darters to take a 2-0 lead in the opening set, but a nine-dart attempt followed by 15 and 16-darters handed Williams a 1-0 lead at the Lakeside.

The next five sets went with throw, with the scores level at three-a-piece. Mitchell was all set to gain an all-important break of throw as he took a 2-0 lead in set seven, only for Williams to reel off three on the spin to move on the verge of a World Championship semi-final.

A 3-1 win in the final set secured a 5-3 win for Williams – who will grace the Lakeside stage again on Saturday evening when he takes world number two Glen Durrant.

Germany’s Michael Unterbuchner booked his place in the final for a second successive year as he defeated Willem Mandigers, hitting eight maximums and a 88 average en route to a 5-3 victory.

Unterbuchner – a beaten finalist in June’s World Trophy –  took the opening set, as he found a 180 before taking out 80 in two darts, with his opponent sat on 38.

Danish Open winner, Mandigers, fought straight back, whitewashing the German in set two with a 14-dart leg and consecutive 18-darters to level up the scoreline in Frimley Green. The Dutchman continued his rout as he dropped just one leg in set three to move 2-1 up in the quarter-final tie.

After missing multiple darts at the outer ring, Unterbuchner was punished in the fourth set. Despite the German hitting maximums in both the third and fifth legs, it was Mandigers who took the set courtesy of a 158 outshot with ‘T-Rex’ sat on 96 to level up the match.

Unterbuchner then started to resurge as he took six of the next eight legs to level up proceedings at three-a-piece. A 104 outshot in set five was crucial from the German, with his opponent sat on a two-dart outshot. The next two sets went with throw, before Unterbuchner broke the throw in the closing set to edge through a close encounter with the Netherlands’ Mandigers.

He’ll face two-time champion, Scott Waites, in the semi-final after Waites denied number one seed Mark McGeeney’s conquer Conan Whitehead on Friday afternoon at the Lakeside.

Reigning Slovak Open champion, Waites, produced a vintage display, hitting a 95.13 and eight maximums in a 5-3 win over Gillingham-based Whitehead.

It was Waites who took the opening set as he denied a comeback from the 32-year-old, before he suffered a whitewash in the second set, with Whitehead hitting tops twice and double 10 to level up the scoreline. Whitehead then took the lead as he converted a outstanding 154 checkout with Waites sat on 73, before wrapped up a 3-1 win in the third set, courtesy of a 64 outshot.

‘Scotty Too Hotty’ reeled off the next three sets to gain a two set advantage, before Whitehead pinned a 102 checkout to move within one set of the Huddersfield-based ace. That proved to the be the final straw for Whitehead, however, as Waites stormed to a 3-0 win in set eight, including a 142 checkout to seal a 5-3 win and his spot in the semi-finals at the Lakeside for a fourth time – two of which he has gone on to win the title.

The coverage will resume from 1pm on Saturday afternoon with the ladies’ final kicking off proceedings before the men’s semi-finals take place at the Lakeside.

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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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