“The Count” on course for title number two after burying John boy 5-1

Walton 29.17 | Hankey 29.49

Millennium champ Ted Hankey scored a revenge win for his defeat in the 2001 final, toppling John Walton in a 63-minute demolition.

Hankey fired out six 180s and 138 and 100 finishes as he destroyed the title hopes of 2001 champ Walton, who had whitewashed defending champ Mark Webster to set up his quarter final clash with “The Count.”

Despite throwing first, 2001 champ John Walton conceded the opening set 3-1, despite two 180s as The Count staked his claim for the title.

A bull finish and his second maximum steered Hankey to a similar score in the second set.

Both players hit maximums in the next set as Hankey fought back from 1-0 to win the deciding fifth leg on double 14.

Hankey defended his throw in the opening leg of the fourth and then blazed in a 138 checkout, finished on double 12. The finish which won the world title for a baby-faced Keith Deller against Eric Bristow in 1983, was actually witnessed by Deller who was in the capacity Lakeside audience.

Refreshed from the break John Boy moved 2-0 ahead in the fifth with an 11-darter finished on double 20,clinching the set on double four.

After Hankey took the opening leg of the sixth with the throw, Walton fired out 180 and then levelled with a 126 checkout finished on bull but his fate was sealed, Hankey taking the third on double five and clinching victory on double four after John Boy missed five match-saving doubles.

A relieved Hankey said: “I just wanted to be in the semi final so much because it means the pressure is off. I am back next year and have never lost in the semi final here. If I had lost it I would have been destroyed big time.”

The Telford-based former champion again based his success this week to cutting back on his drinking before playing.

“I really wanted to have a drink before tonight’s clash with John but could only manage three pints. It has made a real difference because I am more aware of what’s going on around me and am concentrating I need to be,” he said.

“Big Robbo” toppled by super vet Adams after thriller

Adams 30.71 | Robson 30.64

Third seed Martin Adams won a thrilling 76-minute quarter final clash to topple Gary “Big Robbo” Robson 5-4.

The Northumberland sixth seed had battled back from 3-0 down to level the match twice to take it into a tense deciding ninth set.

Adams, blazed back after losing the opening leg against the throw to annex the opening set 3-1.

He then hit a maximum to take a 3-1 success against the throw in the second and then swept through the third unchallenged, equalling the tournament’s highest checkout of 156 by Scot Ross Montgomery in his first round clash with Welshman Martin Phillips.

Robson hit a brace of 180s to annex a set before the interval and refreshed from the break added the fifth set to pull the match back to 3-2.

Big Robbo’s momentum continued in the next as he hit two 180s as he surged through the sixth unchallenged, levelling the game on a 64 checkout, finishing on double 16.

The rock-steady 52-year-old Adams with his wealth of experience, refused to be bullied, delivering a 12 darter finished on bull to open the seventh set.

Robbo swept back with a further 180 and double 16, the Adams family sent into raptures as husband and father Martin swept home double 18 with his second dart to open up a 2-1 lead.

The 2007 champ fired in another maximum clinching the set on double 12 to edge 4-3 ahead in the match.

The first four legs went with the throw in the next set, the 41-year-old Northumberland ace steamed to the double, helped by 140 and 180 scores, hitting the set winning double on double six to take the match into a deciding ninth set.

Adams slammed in his ninth maximum and then took the second leg against the throw but both players missed countless doubles before Adams clinched double five to win through with his 11th attempt.

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