Michael Smith overcomes tough Ross Smith test to reach Masters quarter-finals

Michael Smith is through to the quarter-finals of the 2023 PDC Masters after overcoming Ross Smith 10-7 in Milton Keynes.

In a rematch of the 2022 European Championship final, it was the world number one and recently crowned world champion who took an early lead in the battle of the Smith's. Michael Smith eventually pinning double 2 to secure the opening leg. Ross Smith would come firing back in the second leg though with a brilliant 126 checkout on double 6 Smudger would then break the Bully Boy throw to go 2-1 up before consolidating his advantage by firing in a 130 finish to stretch his lead to two. Michael Smith would take the last leg before the interval, with the score at the break being 3-2 in Ross Smith's favour.

Despite both players scoring well below their best, Ross Smith's finishing had been on point as evidenced when Smudger took out a third ton-plus finish to win the first leg after the break with a 136 checkout. Something about being 4-2 behind seemed to have awoken Michael Smith however. Bully Boy sparked into life, claiming each of the next three legs, firing in 180s in all three to retake the lead at 5-4. Ross Smith would take the 10th leg meaning it was all square at 5 apiece as the players went off stage for the 2nd break.

As both players held throw to begin the 3rd session, you began to feel like the next break of throw if and when it came would be massive. Ross Smith would be the one to take it, pinning double 16 last dart in hand to regain the lead at 7-6, just three legs away from victory. But after Smudger wired double 16 for a 107 checkout, Michael Smith punished and broke straight back to level at 7 all before holding throw to go 8-7 up.

With Ross Smith missing two darts to level up at 8-8, the world number one was yet again on hand to punish his opponent and move a leg away from the win. A leg later, the World Champion would be celebrating a 10-7 victory with Danny Noppert Bully Boy's quarter-final opponent.

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PDC Masters Michael Smith Ross Smith
by Kieran Wood 0 Comments

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