Irish hearts were broken in Dublin as Brendan Dolan was knocked out of the partypoker.com World Darts Grand Prix falling to Mervyn King 5-2. The Daily Shift’s Joel Slattery has more…
Dolan made a flying start winning the first two legs. However, King then found his form to take the first set in unlikely circumstances.
That set hurt Dolan and silenced the crowd. King won set two with a degree of comfort. Dolan wasn’t going to give up though and showed some great fighting spirit.
He played brilliantly in the third set racing to a 2-0 lead. Then he rose the roof in the CityWest with an outstanding 170 finish to take set three and make the home crowd believe.
Dolan then won a fourth leg in a row to take the advantage in the fourth set. Now it was King’s turn to fight back and, to his credit, he did so. The Englishman reeled off three legs in a row, including a 13-dart-leg to regain his two set lead.
The fifth set saw both players hold their throw and be broken as it went to 2-2. King held his nerve to take out 49 and take a huge, and seemingly unassailable 4-1 lead.
Dolan hit a huge 180 in the first leg of the sixth set to prove he wasn’t ready to throw in the towel. Then, for the third time in six sets, the set went to a fifth and deciding leg.
King got to the double first but, amazingly, missed four darts to seal the win. Dolan stepped in to steal the sixth set. 4-2 to King now the score stood at.
However, that was the end of Dolan’s resistance as King won the last set 3-0 winning the match with a spectacular 132 finish ending on the bull.
Disappointment for Dolan but a great tournament for the Irishman nonetheless.
Michael van Gerwen will join King in the final after a 5-1 win against Wes Newton. The win, it must be said, was not as comfortable as it sounds as the first four sets went the distance.
However, from 3-1 up the Dutchman never looked back and won six of the last seven legs to reach a major final. Interestingly, van Gerwen’s average was seven points better than King’s on the night going into the final.
The Englishman was statistically better on the starting doubles hitting them 50% of the time against Dolan.
It will be an intriguing final on Sunday, one which the Irish public will have to enjoy without local hero Brendan Dolan. However there will be local interest as the curtain raiser for the final is the Tom Kirby Memorial Irish Matchplay final between Daryl Gurney and Campbell Jackson