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Sat. May 25th, 2024

Nathan Aspinall thrashed Rob Cross to claim a maximum five points from night five of Premier League Darts in Exeter.

Premier League Darts: Nathan Aspinall wins night five in Exeter
Premier League Darts: Nathan Aspinall wins night five in Exeter

Aspinall defeated his fellow Englishman 6-2, having reached his second straight nightly final by beating Peter Wright and world champion Luke Humphries.

Cross is third in the league table courtesy of his first appearance in a final in this year’s event.

Michael van Gerwen’s lead in the table was reduced to six points following his quarter-final loss to Humphries.

Van Gerwen was bidding for a fourth successive night win after triumphs in Berlin, Glasgow and Newcastle, but was beaten 6-3 in the opening quarter-final.

Aspinall failed to win a match in the first three weeks of the competition, but two final appearances in a row have catapulted him into the top four.

He told Sky Sports: “I’m just very happy. In the past two weeks, I’ve really dug deep.

“Everyone knows I’m a fighter. I’ve been down for the first three weeks, but a final and a win in the past two weeks – I’m over the moon.”

Cross had looked in imperious form in a 6-1 quarter-final success against Gerwyn Price and he followed that by beating teenager Luke Littler 6-3 in his semi-final.

But he started slowly in the final, losing the first five legs, with Aspinall landing a 160 checkout to move within one leg of victory.

Former world champion Cross added some respectability to the score, but Aspinall eventually closed out a comfortable win.

The eight Premier League competitors will next be in action in Minehead at the UK Open, which starts on Friday.

Often described as “the FA Cup of darts”, players enter at various stages of the tournament based on their ranking, but are not seeded and can be paired with any other player in an open draw.

World number four Aspinall won the UK Open in 2019 and added: “That started my career. I’ve got fond memories of Minehead.

“What a fantastic start to the weekend. I’m on cloud nine. Fingers crossed, I get a nice draw on Friday and I can win another major.”

Premier League Darts: Nathan Aspinall wins night five in Exeter
Premier League Darts: Nathan Aspinall wins night five in Exeter

Night five results

Final

Nathan Aspinall 6-2 Rob Cross

Semi-finals

Luke Humphries 5-6 Nathan Aspinall

Rob Cross 6-3 Luke Littler

Quarter-finals

Luke Humphries 6-3 Michael van Gerwen

Nathan Aspinall 6-4 Peter Wright

Gerwyn Price 1-6 Rob Cross

Luke Littler 6-2 Michael Smith

Night six fixtures

7 March in Brighton

Quarter-finals

Luke Humphries v Gerwyn Price

Rob Cross v Michael van Gerwen

Nathan Aspinall v Luke Littler

Michael Smith v Peter Wright

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