Scott Waites is into the BDO World Championship semi-finals after one of the most remarkable comebacks in Lakeside history.

Two-time world champion Waites came from 4-1 down to beat Andy Baetens, who missed six match darts, 5-4. It was the young Belgian who started much the better of the two, winning the opening seven legs as he went 2-0 up. But Waites then reeled off four consecutive legs in a spell that yielded the third set, and culminated in a 147 checkout.

Baetens then picked up his form to claim the fourth set, and steamed ahead in the fifth thanks to a 116 finish. But Scotty 2 Hotty then reeled in a 107 finish of his own to force a crucial decider. The Englishman had the chance to take the set, but was left to rue three missed darts as Baetens stole in to extend his advantage.

Waites was staring down the barrel, but dug deep to begin his incredible resurgence. A 105.2 average in set six helped him to a break of throw, and the set. A visibly concerned Baetens was vulnerable, yet fought back with some supreme scoring. The 28-year-old gave himself the chance to seal victory, but two match darts went astray. Waites, in the last chance saloon, was not ready for last orders.

He took the seventh set, and then routed 11th seed in the first whitewash since the second set to make it 4-4. The Huddersfield builder then broke the Baetens throw, but was unable to convert it into victory. Baetens broke back, then gave himself the chance to seal the win. But four more match darts went awry.

The final set:

Waites, having extended the final set beyond four legs, looked to finish things off quickly. His 14th match 180 and the trusty double 16 put him ahead with a vital break. In a position of authority for the first time in the match, he made no mistake. For a visibly distraught Baetens, the Lakeside dream is over. But for Waites, a meeting with Glen Durrant or Jim Williams beckons, and another final appearance is tantalisingly close. Whatever happens, this Lakeside quarter-final will go down as one of the greatest games seen at Frimley Green.

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Author: Edward McCosh