DENBIGH darts ace Mark Webster is edging closer to that elusive first PDC tournament victory.
Less than a fortnight after defeating the likes of new World Grand Prix champion James Wade and the Flying Scotsman Gary Anderson in Dublin, Webster reached his first final of a Professional Darts Corporation event.
In last Wednesday’s Group Eight of Championship League Darts Wayne Jones took victory, defeating debutant Webster 6-2 to earn a place in last Thursday’s winners’ group.
Jones was competing for a fourth successive day in the internet-streamed event and atoned for two previous semi-final defeats by going all the way in the last of the eight groups.
He ended the league phase with five wins from his seven matches before defeating Dennis Priestley 6-2 in the semis.
Jones then overcame Webster in the decider to earn his spot in the big-money winners’ group.
Webster took the final’s opening leg against the throw, but Jones replied with finishes of double eight and double 16 to lead before the former Lakeside World Professional champion took out 78 for the fourth.
After Jones finished 76 to regain the lead, missed doubles from Webster allowed him in on double eight for a 4-2 lead, with double four moving him clear and double 18 sealing the win.
Webster had won through to the final in his first-ever Championship League Darts appearance.
He hit a 180 with his opening three darts of the event, in a 6-4 win over Jelle Klaasen, and went on to finish fourth in the league table.
Webster’s other wins in the group phase came against Michael van Gerwen (6-3), Dennis Priestley (6-3) and Denis Ovens (6-1), while group defeats were doled out by Wayne Jones (6-4), Co Stompe (6-2) and John Part (6-4).
He then gained revenge to overcame Stompe 6-3 in a thrilling semi-final, which saw the Dutchman lead 3-0 after hitting a 13-darter and two 12-dart finishes - including a 136 checkout.
However, Webster hit the gas to take the next six with an average over 108 to take victory.
In the Championship League Darts final, James Wade followed his World Grand Prix success by defeating Phil Taylor.
Meanwhile, Webster got burned by Burnett in the battle of the Welsh world champions.
Mark joined a star-studded field to compete in the PDC’s John McEvoy Gold Dart Classic Players Championship, held at the INEC in Killarney, Ireland.
The 2008 Lakeside World Professional champion faced fellow Welshman Richie Burnett - the 1995 BDO world champion - in the fourth round.
It was South Walian Burnett who prevailed 6-4 on the way to his first ranking semi-final since April 2006.
As for Webster, who was seeded 16 for the event, his earlier wins came against Billy McAuliffe (6-0), Anthony McMahon (6-2) and Brendan Dolan (6-5).
In the final, the Flying Scotsman Gary Anderson won his fourth title of 2010 with a 6-1 victory over Dennis Smith.
Joe Cullen made it through to the quarter-finals and his Killarney run contained a notable 6-5 defeat of 15-time world champion Phil ‘The Power’ Taylor.