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Phil Taylor describes Michael Smith as one to watch for the future
10:12am Thursday 11th October 2012 in Latest News
DARTS legend Phil ‘The Power’ Taylor was glowing in his praise for St Helens youngster Michael Smith after the pair met in the opening round of the World Grand Prix in Dublin.
Although the 22-year-old Smith lost on his tournament debut against the white-hot reigning champion on Monday night, he showed his massive potential on the big stage.
He made a statement in the game’s opening leg when he walked up to the oche and rattled in two 180s but was unable to stop the on-song world number one from progressing.
Smith’s performance was one that impressed Taylor, and afterwards the Stoke ace said: “For him to come up on stage and throw two 180s in the first leg shows his class and he’s one to watch in the next couple of year.
“He’s very determined to win and he has got a good future ahead of him."
Taylor hit a 165 score to set up double eight for a 14-darter to win the game's opener, and after Smith levelled the Stoke great finished 84 and then took out 94 on the bull to win the first set.
An 82 finish from Taylor gave him the lead in set two, and he then fired in a stunning 167 checkout to move 2-0 up.
Smith finished 113 to keep the game alive, but Taylor followed up a 180 with a 106 finish to seal the victory, ending with an impressive 100.73 average in the double-start format.