JOE CULLEN won his third PDC Unicorn Youth Tour event of the year, edging out Michael Smith 4-3 in Saturday’s final at the New Citywest Convention Centre in Dublin.

The Bradford-based 22-year-old continued his emergence as a star of the future with some classy performances to pick up the £600 first prize.

He dropped only three legs in the early rounds, defeating Michael Meaney, Marco van Rens and Adam Hunt before then enjoying a 4-0 semi-final whitewash over Youth Tour Order of Merit leader Michael van Gerwen.

Cullen opened the final with a 14-darter to break Smith’s throw, and even though his opponent hit a second 180 of the game in leg two Cullen doubled his lead on double 15.

Smith landed a third maximum before getting off the mark on double 12 in the third, although Cullen missed three darts to edge further clear before winning the fourth on double eight after the St Helens ace this time faltered.

The pair traded 180s in the fifth, with Cullen missing the bull for victory before Smith returned to hit double ten.

Cullen missed a further four match darts in the sixth as Smith landed tops to level and force a decider, only to then miss a match dart of his own before the Yorkshireman cleaned up 61 on double 18.

Smith’s display took him to his third final of the year, which accompanies his nine-darter in Event Two in Barnsley and a UK Open Qualifier victory as he again impressed.

The St Helens ace – who along with Hunt is under the wing of Premier League Darts champion Gary Anderson – had to fight all the way in 3-2 wins over Reece Robinson, Ireland’s John Seagrave and Adam Smith-Neale to reach the semis – hitting a 140 against the latter to win the deciding leg of their quarter-final.

Smith also defeated last weekend’s Youth Tour winner in Holland, Paul Barham, 4-2 in the semis as he picked up the £400 runner-up prize.

Van Gerwen followed up his run to the final of Saturday’s Players Championship by taking home £200 as a semi-finalist alongside Barham, while Irish duo Ryan Maher and Paddy Meaney joined Hunt and Smith-Neale in the quarters.

Further PDC Unicorn Youth Tour events will be held in Killarney and Gladbeck this month ahead of the PDC Unicorn World Youth Championship, which will be held on Friday November 4 at the K2 Centre in Crawley.

Entry costs €25 and can be made by calling the PDC Head Office on 08712 501 180 during office hours.

PDC Unicorn Youth Tour Event 13
New Citywest Convention Centre, Dublin – October 1

First Round
Glen Browne Bye
Adam Smith-Neale 3-1 Chris Aubrey
Michael Smith 3-2 Reece Robinson
John Seagrave 3-1 Mike Nissen
Ryan Maher 3-0 Oisin Daly
Brandon Jones 3-0 Jelle Muller
Paul Barham 3-0 Arron Devine
Jack Hill 3-0 Ryan Harrington
Marco van Rens 3-2 Ryan Herrington
Joe Cullen 3-1 Michael Meaney
Arron Monk 3-1 Co Stompe Jnr
Adam Hunt 3-2 Spencer Murphy
David Coyne 3-0 Daniel O’Donnell
Paddy Meaney 3-1 Stephen O’Neill
Michael van Gerwen 3-2 Shaun Griffiths
Stephen Mooney 3-2 Curtis Reeves

Second Round
Adam Smith-Neale 3-2 Glen Browne
Michael Smith 3-2 John Seagrave
Ryan Maher 3-1 Brandon Jones
Paul Barham 3-1 Jack Hill
Joe Cullen 3-1 Marco van Rens
Adam Hunt 3-1 Arron Monk
Paddy Meaney 3-1 David Coyne
Michael van Gerwen 3-1 Stephen Mooney
Losers €27.50 (£25 to Order of Merit)

Quarter-Finals
Michael Smith 3-2 Adam Smith-Neale
Paul Barham 3-2 Ryan Maher
Joe Cullen 3-1 Adam Hunt
Michael van Gerwen 3-2 Paddy Meaney
Losers €110 (£100 to Order of Merit)

Semi-Finals
Michael Smith 4-2 Paul Barham
Joe Cullen 4-0 Michael van Gerwen
Losers €220 (£200 to Order of Merit)

Final
Joe Cullen 4-3 Michael Smith
Winner €660 (£600 to Order of Merit)
Runner-Up €440 (£400 to Order of Merit)

Source – PDC

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