Michael Smith wins epic world championship clash

No words of mine can adequately sum up one of the greatest TV darts matches of all time which unfolded before disbelieving eyes at the Alexandra Palace, London, last night (Wednesday) and those people watching from the comfort of their living room armchairs, especially in St Helens.

Thursday, 30th December 2021, 8:58 am
Updated Thursday, 30th December 2021, 9:01 am
Michael Smith reacts to the win against Jonny Clayton at The William Hill World Darts Championship at Alexandra Palace

Local darting hero Michael Smith had everyone on a knife edge as he KO'd Welshman Jonny Clayton in the William Hill World Championship and now meets title holder Gerwyn Price for a spot in the semi-final.

The scoring of both players was staggering from start to finish with 25 180s, the ascendancy swinging back and forth like the pendulum of a grandfather clock, and ending on a tiebreaker.

Victor Smith, who finished with an average of 99.86, said: ''Jonny is a class act but I kept reminding myself that I possessed the game to beat anyone.''

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Bully Boy added: ''There is still a long way to go in the competition but I won't get carried away with tonight's success.

''In the past, I have probably been guilty of wanting it too much but I'm not making that mistake this year and will continue to concentrate on my darts and see how far my attitude takes me.''

Clayton - the most successful player on circuit this year - averaged 102.48, but Smith never wavered when going two sets down before overtaking his opponent for the first time.and while both players having chances to clinch a mind-boggling and breath-taking victory it was the son of St Helens who emerged triumphant in this battle of the gladiators.