PDC World Darts Championship: Michael van Gerwen beats James Wade to reach final
Michael van Gerwen hit a nine-darter on his way to a 6-4 semi-final win over James Wade at Alexandra Palace.
By Joe Drabble - Twitter: @SkySportsDrabs
Last Updated: 31/12/12 3:48pm
The Dutchman produced the dream leg during a remarkable fifth set which saw him throw 17 perfect darts and fall narrowly short of becoming the first man to register back-to-back nine-darters.
Wade, somehow, won that set, however a below-par 87 average throughout the contest was never going to be enough to see the left-hander reach his first ever World Championship final.
Van Gerwen threw 14 of the 15 match 180s and will next face 15-time world champion Phil Taylor in the final on New Year's Day.
Wade, who had won his seven previous meetings against the 23-year-old, took the first set before a nine-leg blitz put Van Gerwen 3-1 ahead.
A speedy Van Gerwen victory looked a certainty at that stage, however world No.3 Wade showed admirable spirit to battle back amidst the madness of the Dutchman's 17 perfect darts and level the match.
The Aldershot thrower had chances in the seventh set, too, but Van Gerwen came through it before back-to-back 13-dart legs helped move him one set from the final.
Wade rallied in the ninth, but Van Gerwen dashed any hopes of the need for a deciding set by holding on throw throughout the 10th.
Speaking afterwards, Van Gerwen told Sky Sports: "It was a very difficult game for me because I haven't beaten him (Wade) before on TV and it was great to do it in a tournament like this.
"It's not about nine-darters, it's about winning games and I'm delighted to do that."