St Helens ace Smith goes so close again to TV title

Michael Smith
Michael Smith
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Michael Smith’s quest for a first major TV darts crown goes on.

The St Helens ace of the oche lost a dramatic bwin World Series final 11-10 against a red-hot James Wade in Vienna on Sunday night.

Wade ended his four-year wait for a TV title at last weekend’s European Championship and wasted no time in claiming a ninth TV crown after surviving five match darts in a pulsating final leg.

The 35-year-old Aldershot player became a father for the first time recently and an emotional Wade once again dedicated his triumph to son Arthur.

“This is another win for Arthur, I couldn’t be happier right now,” said Wade, who pocketed the £50,000 top prize.

“I threw it away but then Michael did the same and I was very grateful for my second chance to win that game.

“Last week I had the biggest amount of luck in the world and I did again this week with players missing darts at double against me but I made the most of it again.”

Wade raced into a 3-0 lead in the final before Smith battled back to level it up at 5-5 at the second break following a 100 checkout, with the St Helens star averaging 105.3.

He levelled the tie once again with a stunning 170 checkout but Wade replied with a trademark 112 checkout to lead 8-7.

The local lad landed an 87 checkout to take the lead for the first time at 9-8 only for Wade to turn the final back around as he broke the Smith throw to establish a 10-9 advantage.

An incredible end to the match saw Wade bust 121, allowing his rival to level at 10-10 before a gripping final leg saw Smith miss five darts for the title allowing Wade to find double 18 for the win.

Earlier in the competition, Smith had defeated his fellow son of St Helens Dave Chisnall 10-5