Brilliant Petersen ends Price’s run in German Darts Championship second round thriller
Devon Petersen ended Gerwyn Price’s bid to win a fourth successive PDC tournament in a European Tour classic at the German Darts Championship on Saturday, as Michael van Gerwen and Peter Wright moved into the last 16.
World number three Price won back-to-back Players Championship events in Germany recently and then took the bwin World Series of Darts Finals title in Austria last Sunday.
He was aiming to continue that run of success in the European Tour’s return to action, but saw his 17-game winning streak ended in a thrilling second round tie with Petersen in Hildesheim.
The Welshman finished 110, 140 and 116 as he opened up a 5-1 lead, only to see Petersen respond with legs of 14, 14, 12 and 13 darts to level an enthralling contest.
Price had missed one match dart for victory in leg nine, and was unable to take out 105 in the decider as Petersen stepped in to pin a third-dart double 18 for a memorable triumph.
“Gerwyn is a phenomenal player, we saw him win the World Series last week and he’s box office,” said Petersen, who averaged 103 and hit eight 180s in the contest.
“Today I thought it should be the day where we go face-to-face. Luckily for me we got to five-all, and I had that opportunity to finish him off.”
The South African star is in the form of his life, and has reached on Players Championship final and three semi-finals so far in 2020.
“It’s been hard work behind the scenes,” said Petersen, who has worked with Wayne Mardle and Colin Lloyd away from the spotlight recently.
“Lockdown means we’ve had more time practising, there’s loads of people who’ve influenced my game and this is the polished version – but I don’t even feel like I’m there yet.”
World number one Michael van Gerwen opened his bid for a 33rd European Tour title with a 6-2 win over Steve Lennon, as the Dutchman reeled off five straight legs from 2-1 down to move into the last 16.
“I think this was a good start of the tournament,” said Van Gerwen. “To play in front of crowds has been amazing – it’s a pleasure to be back.”
The under-pressure star added: “Everyone knows I’m coming out of a difficult phase in my life, and you have to challenge it. You have to never give up and just keep fighting, and that’s what I do.
“I know my talent, I know my game but sometimes you have to adjust a few things.”
Van Gerwen now faces a third round tie on Sunday afternoon with Mervyn King, who averaged 104 and took out a 170 finish in his 6-2 win over Jermaine Wattimena.
World Champion Peter Wright averaged 107 as he overcame Michael Smith 6-3, setting up a tasty third round meeting with Jonny Clayton.
The Welshman, under pressure to win his second round tie as he bids to secure qualification for the BoyleSports World Grand Prix, held his nerve to claim a 6-4 win over Chris Dobey.
Dave Chisnall averaged almost 109 in a brilliant opening to Saturday’s second round as he whitewashed German qualifier Lukas Wenig, and he now plays Nathan Aspinall after the Premier League semi-finalist’s 6-2 win over Dragutin Horvat.
Former World Youth Champion Max Hopp will represent German interests in the event on Sunday following his 6-4 win over Ian White as he set up a third round tie with Danny Noppert, who averaged 101 in a 6-2 defeat of Adrian Lewis.
Glen Durrant won the battle of former Lakeside Champions against Scott Waites 6-3 and now plays Daryl Gurney, who dropped only one leg as he defeated Gabriel Clemens.
Rob Cross, the runner-up to Price at the World Series of Darts Finals last Sunday, hit 50 percent of his darts at a double in a 6-3 win over William O’Connor, and he now meets Petersen in round three.
Krzysztof Ratajski finished 129 and 103 in his 6-3 win over Richard North, who missed double 12 for a nine-dart finish, with the Polish ace now taking on Joe Cullen, who was a 6-4 winner against Adam Hunt.
Canada’s Jeff Smith missed double 18 for a nine-darter during his tie with Mensur Suljovic, who eventually took a 6-4 victory to move through to a tie with James Wade, a 6-2 winner against German youngster Nico Kurz.
The German Darts Championship, the second of four European Tour events to be played this year, will conclude on Sunday, with the afternoon session’s third round followed in the evening session by the quarter-finals, semi-finals and final.
The event is the last before the cut-off for BoyleSports World Grand Prix qualification, with the world’s top 16 players joined by 16 qualifiers from the ProTour Order of Merit.
The German Darts Championship is being broadcast on PDCTV at video.pdc.tv, as well as through a series of bookmakers’ websites worldwide.
2020 German Darts Championship
Saturday September 26
Dave Chisnall 6-0 Lukas Wenig
Mervyn King 6-2 Jermaine Wattimena
Danny Noppert 6-2 Adrian Lewis
Daryl Gurney 6-1 Gabriel Clemens
Nathan Aspinall 6-2 Dragutin Horvat
Glen Durrant 6-3 Scott Waites
Rob Cross 6-3 William O’Connor
Jonny Clayton 6-4 Chris Dobey
Max Hopp 6-4 Ian White
Mensur Suljovic 6-4 Jeff Smith
Michael van Gerwen 6-2 Steve Lennon
Peter Wright 6-3 Michael Smith
Krzysztof Ratajski 6-2 Richard North
Devon Petersen 6-5 Gerwyn Price
Joe Cullen 6-4 Adam Hunt
James Wade 6-2 Nico Kurz
Sunday September 27
Afternoon Session (1300 local time, 1200 BST)
Michael van Gerwen v Mervyn King
Mensur Suljovic v James Wade
Peter Wright v Jonny Clayton
Dave Chisnall v Nathan Aspinall
Max Hopp v Danny Noppert
Daryl Gurney v Glen Durrant
Devon Petersen v Rob Cross
Krzysztof Ratajski v Joe Cullen
Evening Session (1900 local time, 1800 BST)
Van Gerwen/King v Suljovic/Wade
Wright/Clayton v Chisnall/Aspinall
Hopp/Noppert v Gurney/Durrant
Petersen/Cross v Ratajski/Cullen
All games up to, and including, the quarter-finals, are the best of 11 legs. The semi-finals are the best of 13 legs and the final is the best of 15 legs.
Sunday’s games played in Draw Bracket order.
Image: Tobias Wenzel/PDC Europe