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Lewis on course to defend darts title

NZ NewswireNZ Newswire 18/06/2016

Adrian Lewis remains on course to win a second successive title at the Auckland Darts Masters after claiming a remarkable 10-9 win over Phil Taylor.

Lewis, who edged Taylor in a classic semi-final in Auckland last year, claimed a hard-fought quarter-final victory this time round.

Taylor kicked off with 177 and 180 and fellow-Englishman Lewis also added a maximum in an 11-darter to lead, only to see the 16-time world champion level with the aid of another 180 and a 122 bull finish.

Lewis won the next three - including a 103 finish to break - to seize a 5-2 lead, but Taylor battled back and eventually cut the gap to 7-6 with a 102 checkout.

Lewis fired a superb 124 bull finish and then landed tops to move to the brink of victory at 9-6 up only to see Taylor take the next three legs to force a decider.

But two-time world champion Lewis held the advantage of throw and landed double top at the fourth time of asking to seal a memorable win.

"It was a brilliant match - Phil seemed to be hitting 180s every time I looked up and it was treble after treble for him," Lewis said.

"But in that last leg I had the throw and started well. It got a little bit nervy so I'm happy to get over the line."

Lewis will now meet James Wade in the semi-finals after the left-hander produced an outstanding performance to defeat world No.1 Michael van Gerwen 10-6.

World champion Gary Anderson turned on the style with a 104 average as he overcame fellow Scot Peter Wright 10-6 and set up a semi-final against Raymond van Barneveld, who downed Dave Chisnall 10-5.

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