Premier League Darts: Good week, bad week
By Brian Barry
Last Updated: 19/03/20 2:44pm
We reflect on the winners and the losers from the Premier League and Pro Tour action in recent days.
Duzza just keeps on delivering in the Premier League. At the start of the campaign, many feared the three-time Lakeside champ would be a contender for elimination, including himself.
However, he continues to prove the doubters wrong.
Although it wasn't a vintage display of high-scoring from the Middlesbrough native in his win over Daryl Gurney, it was a clinic of finishing. He hit a remarkable 63.64 per cent on checkouts - a number which is all the more remarkable when you consider he won two legs on the bullseye.
Top of the league after six matches, Duzza is on fire.
The world champion overturned perhaps the Premier League's form man with a 7-4 win over Michael Smith on Thursday.
Snakebite hit a 100.78 average, and finished the job with a 10-darter in what was a thoroughly impressive showing.
The Scotsman has put his Dublin disaster firmly in the past with his last two displays, and is right in the mix after six rounds.
Over the weekend, he reached the last 16 on both days, but became unstuck with defeats to Derk Telnekes and Kim Huybrechts.
Six legs into his meeting with Gary Anderson on Merseyside and things weren't looking good for the Asp. Trailing 1-5, it appeared he would be leaving Liverpool empty-handed.
However, he dug deep and rescued a draw, winning five of the remaining six legs. Indeed, such was the quality of his comeback that he finished with a three-dart average of 107.64 for the match.
He used that momentum to enjoy quite the weekend.
On Saturday, he scooped Players Championship 7 honours in Barnsley. The run included a 6-1 quarter-final win over Michael van Gerwen, before his run of six consecutive legs in the decider against Brendan Dolan saw a 2-4 deficit turn into a 8-4 victory.
He was unable to back it up on Sunday, as he suffered a shock first-round defeat at the hands of Madars Razma.
Work to do...
The Iceman didn't have long to wait for an opportunity to exact revenge on the world number one after the UK Open final, as the duo met on the Premier League oche just four days after Minehead.
Nonetheless, it was the same frustrating result for the Welshman. Not that Price played particularly badly, but the Green Machine clearly respects him as one of his most dangerous opponents, and seems to reserve his A-game for their meetings.
Price was out-gunned by the reigning champ in the scoring stakes, and didn't hide his disappointment at the finish.
It all started so well for Gurney on Thursday night, taking a 1-0 lead with a 144 finish. However, from there things deteriorated significantly as Duzza took control.
Despite a late rally from Super Chin, the Englishman prevailed 7-5.
Gurney is now in deep trouble in the relegation picture. Rob Cross' draw with Stephen Bunting sees the two-time major champ cut adrift at the bottom of the league, and he'll need at least two wins from the last three games before Judgement Night if he is to have any chance of surviving.
Uncertainty surrounding fixtures
Despite the Premier League and the Players Championship taking place in recent days, darts hasn't been completely unaffected by the coronavirus pandemic.
European Tour events have been postponed, while the Premier League stop in Rotterdam has also been put back.
As it stands, the situation is being monitored ahead of Thursday's action in Newcastle, with PDC CEO Matt Porter suggesting that it shouldn't proceed behind closed doors.
Like all other sports right now, the picture surrounding darts is unclear.