Darts UK Open round-up

First published in Sport

MICHAEL VAN GERWEN, Adrian Lewis, Terry Jenkins and Mervyn King won through to the Coral UK Open Semi-Finals with fine victories in the tournament's last eight at the Butlins Minehead Resort on Sunday afternoon.

The £250,000 tournament's decisive final day kicked off with four superb Quarter-Finals, as a quartet of players all reached the UK Open's last four for the first time in their careers.

World Champion van Gerwen held off a gutsy display from Ian White before claiming a 10-8 victory, with the Stoke ace taking out 141 early on only to see the Dutchman follow checkouts of 124 and 113 by sealing the win with a 109 finish.

"In some moments there I felt great, maybe too good, but Ian did well," said van Gerwen, who now plays Jenkins in the Semi-Finals.

"Terry's done well this weekend and has a lot of experience, so I need to improve my game to beat him. It will be a cracking game against Terry but it's not going to be easy tonight because there are four top players left in the tournament."

Jenkins continued his fine run of form with a 10-4 defeat of Brendan Dolan, hitting five 180s and a 126 checkout in moving towards the eighth major final of his career.

"Brendan's a tough player to play against but I put him under pressure throughout the game," said Jenkins. "I was really relaxed and kept my cool - I usually let the other bloke back in when I get ahead but I did a good job here.

"Fingers crossed I can make the final tonight because this is one of the few majors where I haven't reached the final yet - and it would be great to win it."

Two-time World Champion Adrian Lewis was in scintillating form as he followed up Saturday night's big win over Raymond van Barneveld with a 10-3 defeat of Austria's Mensur Suljovic.

"I've reached a couple of quarter-finals before in this event but never the semi-finals so it's a new step for me," said Lewis. "I feel good and my form's fantastic, so I want to go on and win the tournament now."

Lewis now plays Mervyn King, who continued to defy the pain of sciatica in his back with a 10-6 win over Kevin Painter as he remains in the hunt for his first PDC major title.

Painter won the game's opening two legs and hit four 180s, but was unable to match his opponent's consistency as King moved into the last four.

"Kevin started well but I got into a rhythm and took my chances well," said King. "I'll have a rest before the semi-finals and I'm looking forward to tonight.

"My back has been giving me a lot of grief for 18 months but it's getting sorted now, and although I'm stiff now it's more a 'getting better' pain, not a 'hurt' pain.

"Colin Lloyd put me in touch with his physio and I thank him for that because I'm going in the right direction and it might even be helping me slightly because I'm not moving while I throw."

Sunday evening sees the tournament conclude, with the Semi-Finals followed by the Final at the Butlins Minehead Resort, with coverage live on ITV4.

Tournament sponsors Coral make van Gerwen the 8/13 favourite to lift the Coral UK Open trophy on Sunday night, with Lewis the 7/4 second favourite, King 10/1 to take the title and Jenkins the 12/1 outsider to lift his first major crown.

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