Rob Cross and Michael Smith have finalised proceedings in the opening session of action at the Grand Slam of Darts with victories over Lisa Ashton and Glen Durrant respectively.

Cross had the pressure on him before proceedings but he delivered in a 5-2 victory against the multiple BDO Ladies Champion who can keep her head high ahead of future ties against Dave Chisnall and Jamie Hughes.

Smith on the other hand was excellent in a 5-3 win with four 180’s and a 100 average; he missed a nine-darter en route to victory over Glen Durrant in a match that many would have expected to go far.

Ashton hit a 177 in the opening leg but Cross took the opening leg. ‘The Lancashire Rose’ smashed in a 180 and tops and hit a 14 darter to go one a piece; as she showed her game was up there on the Grand Slam stage.

She gave herself a good chance of claiming a further foothold and the lead; but Cross hit the double three first time to go 2-1 up.

Cross missed double 18 for a 141 but was well ahead so broke throw with a 13 darter. This seemed to knock the game of Ashton but she capitalised on misses from Cross to break back at 3-2 behind.

Cross though ended up going one away as he took the resistance away from Ashton and he concluded it second time around on his favourite double 18.

Smith doubled his lead in the early going against Durrant but the duo missed a handful of darts at double and this allowed the Teesside ace to reduce the deficit.

It was back towards a two leg cushion but he went eight darts into a nine-darter which saw him lose his concentration and hand Duzza the initiative at 3-2 behind.

He strayed into the five when going for a 116 checkout and this allowed Smith to go 4-2 up and one away with a 44 checkout.

A clutch 78 checkout saw Durrant hold throw and keep himself in it. Durrant started the next leg with a 60 and Smith was down towards around 221 after six darts. A 64 finish saw him finish the job off with a 5-3 win.

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Grand Slam of Darts 2019, Day One

Afternoon session schedule

Nathan Aspinall (98.88) 5-0 (91.54) Martin Schindler (H)
Danny Noppert (95.34) 4-5 (93.65) Ryan Harrington (F)
Brendan Dolan (92.55) 1-5 (99.4) Gabriel Clemens (G)
Dave Chisnall (97.19) 5-3 (95.75) Jamie Hughes (E)
Daryl Gurney (91.65) 5-0 (75.69) Richard Veenstra (G)
Peter Wright (98.16) 5-2 (88.65) Wayne Warren (F)
Rob Cross (93.19) 5-2 (80.7) Lisa Ashton (E)
Michael Smith (99.28) 5-3 (93.08) Glen Durrant (H)

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Author: Samuel Gill