AND HERE'S HOW SHEFFIELD PAID TRIBUTE
FINAL WORD TO ERIC
Only right that the final post goes to Eric Bristow, Sky Sports remembered the legendary figure with his own words
DOUBLE IN THE DAM
A reminder of what we have in store next week - not one, but TWO nights of Premier League Darts, in Rotterdam! The highlight being MvG v RvB in a contest that should send the Ahoy crazy on Thursday.
Do join us, live on Sky Sports or here when we will be back with another live blog to keep you up to date.
AND HERE IS THE TABLE
Confirmation of Anderson's move into the top four, and MvG opening up clear water at the top. Big win for Snakebite who keeps alive hopes of the top four, a missed chance for Barney though.
SCORES ON THE DOORS
Here's what we had this evening, a set of results that opens up the battle for the top four, Gary Anderson the big winner though moving into the play-off places.
VAN BARNEVELD *2-7 WRIGHT
VAN BARNEVELD 2-6* WRIGHT
Wright is playing the better darts and secures himself a point with a 107 finish, thanks to a clinical dart at double 16 to complete the combination
VAN BARNEVELD *2-5 WRIGHT
Barney misses tops for a Shanghai on the 20s and the door is open for Wright - he just about finds the big twenty, narrowly avoided the treble that would have bust his score. He misses his first dart at double top but finds the corner of the bed with his final dart to regain his three-leg advantage.
VAN BARNEVELD 2-4* WRIGHT
The pair are locked on 76, Wright has first crack and can't find a winning dart - Barney steps up to find a double. He doesn't look to impressed but he breaks back and is within touching distance again.
VAN BARNEVELD *1-4 WRIGHT
Snakey going through the gears and he finds top gear to sink a brilliant 132 finish and open up a three-leg advantage. More importantly its another break of throw.
VAN BARNEVELD 1-3* WRIGHT
A confident hold of throw from Snakebite who mops up double top with an improved Barney started to look a little more interested.
VAN BARNEVELD *1-2 WRIGHT
VAN BARNEVELD 1-1* WRIGHT
VAN BARNEVELD *1-0 WRIGHT
Barney looks a touch disinterested it must be said, while Wright was his usual ebullient self. The same can't be said for the darts, Barney eventually pinning the double for a 21-dart leg that gives him the lead.
'WIN OR BUST'
That's the verdict of Wayne Mardle for our final game of the evening. Peter Wright takes on Raymond van Barneveld and a win is a must if either of them are to have any chance of an unlikely looking push for the top four!
One more game to come and it won't have any bearing on the top of the table where Michael van Gerwen has his sights set on top spot
AS IT STANDS
Those two look good value behind Michael van Gerwen, here's how the table stacks up
SMITH 5-7* CROSS
Cross has the darts and finds a fourth 180 of the contest - it's matched by Smith and there is nothing to separate them in this thriller.
Smith falters at the crucial moment, and Cross will have six darts to take out 134 - he sets it up and will need 48 on his next visit, single 16 followed by a double 16 gives him a 7-5 win and draws him level with Smith in the table.
SMITH *5-6 CROSS
SMITH 4-6* CROSS
SMITH *3-6 CROSS
'He is the world champion and he is playing like one' says Wayne Mardle as Cross ploughs in another maximum - After nine darts he has left himself 82. Smith is hardly playing badly but he has got no answer. Voltage wraps up the leg and a point with tops finishing off his 82.
SMITH 3-5* CROSS
SMITH *3-4 CROSS
Cross is very much in the groove, a maximum leaves 62. Smith misses a dart at bullseye for the leg and Cross punishes him by cleaning up 62 to retake the lead thanks to a brilliant 12 dart leg.
SMITH 3-3* CROSS
SMITH *3-2 CROSS
These two are serving up a cracker so far, averages in excess of 100 and after nine darts both are down to a finish. Smith misses a dart for the leg, Cross doesn't even get that and Smith comes back to take out D8 and move in front for the first time.
SMITH 2-2* CROSS
SMITH *1-2 CROSS
A missed opportunity for Smith but Cross can't start the combo for 136 so Bully Boy is back. He needs all three darts chasing a double before pinning double 5, but he does it and he is on the board.
SMITH 0-2* CROSS
SMITH *0-1 CROSS
Bully Boy kicks off with a maximum and five perfect darts, befitting a man in sensational form - he was a ProTour winner for the second time this season at the weekend
Cross finds a maximum of his own to leave 107 and he will get the chance at it - he takes it as well for an early break.
Second-placed Michael Smith takes on third placed Rob Cross - for my money one of the matches of the World Champs when Bully Boy missed darts to knock out the eventual champion.
Here's Mardle's thoughts....They're both picking up points. Rob had a big win last week against Anderson. Last week was also massive for Smith, beating Barney. Everything about that spoke volumes about Smith.
We're now seeing the best of Smith. He's played himself into form.
Cross wasn't well at the weekend - he had a bug. Maybe he still isn't 100 per cent but, I can assure you, Smith is playing the darts of his life.
That defeat for Whitlock means Gary Anderson will end the evening in the top four - here's what he has to say after victory.
AS IT STANDS
A couple of games left this evening and here is how things look - very good for Van Gerwen it must be set.
BIG FINISHES FROM THE BIG MAN
MvG was ruthless throughout, this 106 just one of his big finishes on his way to a big win
WHITLOCK 1-7* VAN GERWEN
With Whitlock a long long way back, Van Gerwen goes for a party finish on the bullseye. He can't take it out but is back for 25 - he can't take that out but the Aussie nowhere to be seen Van Gerwen will get another chance.
One dart is all he needs to secure a 7-1 win - his biggest of the Premier League season so far.
WHITLOCK *1-6 VAN GERWEN
WHITLOCK 1-5* VAN GERWEN
121 from MvG and that is a second 100+ finish, two legs away now from an eighth successive victory as he average head north of 107.
WHITLOCK *1-4 VAN GERWEN
WHITLOCK 1-3* VAN GERWEN
Van Gerwen marching through the gears here but Whitlock is impressively keeping pace. MvG misses a dart at D8 for a 130 check-out but he is back to pin the aforementioned missed double and forge a two-leg lead.
WHITLOCK *1-2 VAN GERWEN
WHITLOCK 1-1* VAN GERWEN
The pair trade 180s and MvG makes a mess of his next visit, missing the big number and then a dart for the leg. Whitlock can't punish him and Van Gerwen returns to level - as Rod Studd explains, you cannot pass up those opportunities from the world no 1.
WHITLOCK *1-0 VAN GERWEN
It's the Aussie who is out of the gate first, cleaning up 50 to take the opening leg and crucially hold his throw having kept pace with Van Gerwen.
Right outcome, wrong score for Wayne in match no two as he tipped a 7-5 win for Anderson.
His thoughts on this one - Simon has done himself proud, hasn't he? But playing against Van Gerwen is different to playing anybody else.If Whitlock under performs, he'll get beat. The likelihood is that he'll get beat anyway. 7-5 to MVG.
Simon Whitlock has a chance to get back into the top four, where he started the evening, having been overtaken by Daryl Gurney and Gary Anderson.
However the small matter of the world no 1 and the defending champion stands in his way - and MvG is in handy form at the moment.
So Anderson, the two-time PL champion seems to be getting back on track. Now the push for a play-off place is on the juices look like they are started to flow.
OUR FIRST WINNER
While we wait for Gary Anderson, let's hear from the night's first winner and Daryl Gurney is enjoying the balancing act of becoming a father for the first time!
ANDERSON *7-2 WRIGHT
Anderson leaves 32 but Wright is on 86 - he needs bullseye but can't take it out. And Anderson returns to pin D16, that secures a win and takes him up into the top four - for now at least!
ANDERSON 6-2* WRIGHT
ANDERSON *6-1 WRIGHT
A third maximum of the night but no 100 finish for Anderson. It gives Wright a chance at 144 but he can't start the combination. Tops needed for a point for Gary and tops he nails. That's a point but Anderson will want more and a big win will help his leg difference.
ANDERSON 5-1* WRIGHT
ANDERSON *5-0 WRIGHT
Anderson is a long way clear and steps up for 146, he can't take it out but leaves eight. He could be back if Wright can't take out 161 - only just mind you. Snakebite finds the first two trebles but narrowly misses the bull, Ando chases his finish around the board before pinning D1 to move one away from a guaranteed point.
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