Finals Night 17 Final Jonny Clayton 11 – Jose de Sousa 5, Semi’s, MvG 8 – Clayton 10, de Sousa 10 – Nathan Aspinall 9.
Anyone forecasting a Jonny Clayton, Jose de Sousa Premier League final, would have cleaned out sponsor UniBet’s coffers. Both debutants, but Clayton outstanding in the final to take the trophy and a £ 250,000 cheque, de Sousa, just £ 120,000. Each player averaged 100+, Clayton only behind after leg 1.
The Welshman levelled on what seems to be his trademark finish of 121, adding a further two for 3-1. De Sousa was showing nerves, but then threw a magnificent 10 dart leg in the 8th, 180, 140, 165, D8. His opponent narrowly missed a 145 out the next leg, concluded next throw. Clayton finished the 11th leg on 98 for a 3 leg advantage, de Sousa roaring back with a 12. Clayton reeled off the the next 4 with some clinical finishing for the title and a huge payday. De Sousa’s consolation, a new 180 record of 96 for the tournament.
Clayton had narrowly disposed of MvG in the semi, the Dutchman never previously lost a Premier League at this stage. There was brilliance from both, MvG nailing a 12 darter in the 6th for 3 apiece.
Clayton took the next, only for MvG to close the following 501 on 140, T20,D20,D20. The Ferret responded with countless 140’s to lead by 6-4, MvG replied by taking the next 3 in11, 15 and an 88 out on the bull, to 7-6 ahead. The future champion then took 4 of the next 5 in 15,15,11 and 12, the winning leg on what else but 121.
The other semi went all 19 legs, de Sousa with throw taking the 19th in 14, to include a 180 and 177, the Asp on 53, it was that close. De Sousa’s counting woes continued in the 4th, when requiring 37, went S15, D16, but wanted D11. Ultimately it nearly cost him the match, one day it will.
Over the next 17 legs he did redeem himself however with 14,13,13,12 and 14 outs, the Asp an 11, 15 and incredible 180,180,125, D8 for 10 darts. We’ll be hearing much more from these two later this year. Semi finalists each receive £ 80,000.
Night 13 Jonny Clayton 8 – Gary Anderson 1, Jose de Sousa 8 – Dimitri van den Bergh 6, Nathan Aspinall 8 – Michael van Gerwen 3, James Wade 4 – Peter Wright 8.
The crowds were back for the final week of the 2021 Premier League. First on Clayton admitted to a little nerves after a year of silence, but both produced an excellent curtain raiser, Clayton reclaiming a top four spot in his demolition of Anderson. The Scot secured a 104.28 average, his opponent 101.24. From 1-1, Clayton reeled off 7 straight legs, Anderson narrowly failing to hit the bull in the 6th, 7th, and 8th legs.
De Sousa added just 3 more maxi’s to his 66 so far, in this close encounter with Dimitri. Both were a trifle off their best, but each produced 11 darters, de Sousa missing D8 for a 10 in the 9th. Dimitri 4×180 and a 171, de Sousa yet another 100+ ave.
Aspinall returned to the top, with a pretty convincing defeat of MvG. Two 120 outs in the first 5 legs gave the Asp an early 4-1 advantage. MvG came to life in the 7th and 8th with a 122 and 110 finishes. Sadly that was it for the Green Machine as the Asp claimed both points, by winning the next 3.
Wade had an outside chance of making the top 4, expecting to beat Wright, as 6 others had previously done. The former World Champ was having none of it and at last showed some form, winning the last 4 legs, but remaining bottom of the pile.
Night 14 Wade 7 – Aspinall 7, Clayton 5 – de Sousa 8, Anderson 4 – MvG 8, Wright 8 – Dimitri 5.
Wade needed victory to keep his hopes of finals participation alive and almost achieved it against an in form Asp. 13 and 11 dart opening legs from Wade, were countered by a 3rd leg 12. Wade’s semi for a 170 out was punished in 11 in the 11th leg. The Asp missed a match dart on 108 in the 13th, before Wade closed the remaining 2 for the draw.
De Sousa edged to within 7 of Anderson’s 2011 record of 79 x 180’s and will surely smash the total before finals night. 3 ton + finishes from Clayton, not enough to challenge de Sousa, even with his appalling counting.
Surprisingly 2 x D1’s featured for MvG, one, the winning 8th leg, against Anderson. Just 2×180, a 177 and 174 from MvG, Flashes of brilliance from the Scot, a 110 and a 138 in the 10th insufficient against the bookies favourite.
Dimitri hit 8×180, a 106.97 ave. a 63% checkout and still lost to a resurgent Wright. On this form Wright 102.82 ave. may well influence the final four.
Night 15 Clayton 5 – Wright 8, Wade 7 – Dimitri 7, Anderson 7 – Aspinall 7, de Sousa 6 – MvG 8.
A 12, 13 and 12 dart legs from Snakebite Wright, dented Claytons aspirations of a top 4 place. From 5-2 down, Snakebite reeled off the next 5 legs in style, to include a 13 darter and a 161 out.
Both Wade and Dimitri enjoyed 100+ averages, the latter rescuing a point, with a last leg 130 out. Wade looked the likely winner in the 13th taking out 121 and clinical finishing throughout. Dimitri was only ahead after the 1st on 104, but added another 104 and 127.
Anderson entertained a raucous crowd, with outs of 118 and 112, plus a tasty 11, 180,123,174, 24 (in 2). The Asp nailing 4×180, 110 and 121 outs, and a last leg D10 for the draw.
Portugal export de Sousa, now sits on 78 maxi’s, after managing 6 in this defeat by MvG. ” The Special One” had 2 darts for the draw in the 14th, missing with both, allowing the Dutchman a D20 to win and a 62% double conversion.
Night 16 Anderson 6 – Wade 8, Aspinall 3 – de Sousa 8, Wright 6 – MvG 8, Dimitri 6 – Clayton 8.
Wade ended his campaign with victory over Anderson, 6th place and £60,000, whilst de Sousa destroyed the Asp and Anderson’s 180 record. He also entertained the crowd, with a jaw dropping opening leg out of 120, 3 double tops.
lncredible !!! Two 11 darters thrown in and a 50% double conversion. MvG ensured top spot and bonus, but all eyes were on the tussle for the 4th finals spot. lt was tight but Clayton 103.92 just edged out Dimitri 100.55. Clayton no maxis, but 17×140 and a 177.