- World Matchplay
Taylor and Anderson cruise into final four
Phil Taylor set up a semi-final meeting with Gary Anderson in the World Matchplay title after another superb performance at the Winter Gardens in Blackpool.
Fresh from his nine-dart heroics to reach the last eight, Taylor rarely looked threatened in defeating Wes Newton 16-6, while Anderson also enjoyed a one-sided 16-8 victory over Adrian Lewis.
Newton broke the Taylor throw twice in the first six games to lead 4-2, only for Taylor to respond by winning the next seven legs. It should have been eight, but Taylor missed three darts at double tops before Newton reduced the deficit to 9-5.
Even after taking the next leg to lead 10-5, Taylor headed off for the break still shaking his head and clapping his hands as if to focus himself, clearly still annoyed by having his dominant run broken.
He immediately took the next two legs but could only stand and applaud as Newton took out 149 to stop the rot at 12-6. It was to prove his last successful leg, meaning Taylor had won 14 of the last 16 legs of the match.
"I'm feeling good," Taylor told Sky Sports. "Wes is a tough cookie, trust me, he was up there to win. He was giving it large, he was up 4-2 and I was worried. When he started losing, it got his head down.
"It wasn't a great match, I've got to be honest, but it was a tough match to win. I think you've got a cracking semi-final, on both sides of the draw."
Earlier in the night, Anderson romped past Adrian Lewis 16-8 with a dominant performance. Lewis trailed 9-3 at one stage but clawed that back to 10-6 before Anderson hit a third and final attempt at double tops to win the 17th leg, with Lewis needing just 8 had he missed.
Anderson continued to dominate from that point on, winning three of the next four legs as Lewis struggled to find top form. Another nerveless takeout, this time of 104, put him two legs from victory. He broke Lewis' throw one final time in the next leg, before completing the match with a superb 11-dart finish.
However, Anderson was not impressed by the standard of play and felt both he and Lewis had struggled to cope with the renowned heat of the Winter Gardens venue.
"I thought it was a bad game - I thought Aidy was rubbish and my rubbish was a wee bit better," said Anderson. "As soon as we walked in today into the players' room, the heat up there - it's past the point of a joke. It's terrible up there.
"I was so uncomfortable coming down the stairs, I don't know how hot it is up there but it's hot and I think Adrian felt it as well to be honest."