Michael van Gerwen could add a record seventh Premier League Darts title shortly after seeing off Michael Smith in the semi-finals at the O2 10-8.
With the under current of his shoulder injury being a talking point (despite him declaring himself 100% fit and playing last weekend's ProTours), Smith was seen as a favourite going into the tie but after a superb start, he failed to produce regular scoring prowess.
MVG on the other hand hit seven 180's and a 101 average and now heads into a mouth watering clash with rival, Gerwyn Price with the main forerunners for most of the Premier League set to face off again.
A 128 checkout on double four saw Smith start off with a hold of throw. Van Gerwen responded with a 64 checkout. Smith pinned double 20 to go 2-1 up.
Van Gerwen went six darts into a nine-darter before returning for a 58 checkout for a 12-darter to make it 2-2. A poor leg from Smith saw Van Gerwen mop up a break chance to go 3-2 up.
It was daylight for MVG on double 20 at 4-2. Smith missed a dart from 64 but MVG missed chances to break again only to return for more after further costly darts and MVG made it 5-2.
A 100 checkout saw him storm into a 6-2 lead. At the break, he was 7-3 up with an 11-darter. A 114 checkout saw Smith hold and stop the rot at 7-4 down albeit still with a lot of work to do. This was further as Van Gerwen hit double 10 to make it 8-4.
Smith made it 8-5 under pressure. An 86 checkout saw Smith break to make it 8-6. But he capitulated on the scoring and handed Van Gerwen a chance to go one away but he didn’t take it.
Smith smashed in a 91 checkout on the bull to go one behind at 8-7. But again his scoring deserted him at the wrong time and MVG went one away at 9-7. He missed a match dart off 78 and Smith hit 123 to hold.
Van Gerwen finally got over the line amid a chorus of boos with a huge roar aimed at the crowd at the O2.
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