St Leonards star back on top of Premier League

Rob Cross (left) shakes hands with beaten opponent Daryl Gurney at the end of their match in Belfast tonight. Picture courtesy Michael Cooper/PDC
Rob Cross (left) shakes hands with beaten opponent Daryl Gurney at the end of their match in Belfast tonight. Picture courtesy Michael Cooper/PDC

Darts star Rob Cross went back to the top of the Unibet Premier League following another terrific victory tonight (Thursday).

The world number two from St Leonards recorded his seventh win in 10 Premier League matches with an 8-4 success against third-ranked Daryl Gurney at The SSE Arena in Belfast.

And he moved back to the league summit because previous leader Michael van Gerwen - the world number one and world champion - drew 7-7 with Gerwyn Price.

See also: * St Leonards star nets another Premier League win
* St Leonards star reaches European Open final
* St Leonards star goes top of Premier League

Cross recorded a 104.7 average, and hit three 180s and three ton-plus checkouts in a fully deserved win over his Northern Irish opponent.

Cheered on by the home crowd, Gurney broke the Cross throw in the opening leg only for Cross to surge back with a 117 outshot for a 12-dart break before a 13-dart hold put him 2-1 up.

Although Cross missed two darts at a double in leg four, another 13-dart hold in leg five followed by another 12-dart break in leg six gave him a 4-2 lead.

Gurney, who beat Cross on his way to winning the German Darts Championship last weekend, produced a 112 finish in leg seven, but Cross landed back-to-back 177s to break in leg eight and another 177 in leg nine helped him hold in 14 darts for a 6-3 advantage.

Although Cross missed a dart at double 18 in leg 10, another 14-dart hold in leg 11 put him 7-4 ahead and he wrapped things up in style with a 124 checkout on the bullseye for a 12-dart break in leg 12.

Darts’ widest-reaching tournament, the Unibet Premier League sees nine of the world’s top players compete across 17 nights of action from February-May.

The top four players at the end of 16 nights will face off in the Play-Offs at The O2 in London on May 23.

Cross now has 15 points to his name - one more than second-placed van Gerwen - and he will face Peter Wright at the M&S Bank Arena in Liverpool next Thursday.

Standings (all played 10 matches): 1 Rob Cross 15pts (+20 leg difference), 2 Michael van Gerwen 14 (+22), 3 Mensur Suljovic 12 (+4), 4 James Wade 11 (+8), 5 Daryl Gurney 11 (-2), 6 Gerwyn Price 10 (-1), 7 Peter Wright 9 (-5), 8 Michael Smith 8 (-6).