Phil Taylor sets up World Matchplay final with Peter Wright in Blackpool

Taylor last won the World Matchplay in 2014
Taylor last won the World Matchplay in 2014
Author

30 July, 2017

Phil Taylor produced a brilliant semi-final performance to beat Adrian Lewis and stay on course for his 16th World Matchplay title.

Taylor took three straight legs from seven-all to lead 10-7, and though Lewis briefly stemmed the tide with double 12, the number eight seed took out legs of 12 and 11 in a run of five further legs to move 15-8 up.

It was the 32-year-old Lewis who broke first and took a 3-1 lead, but Taylor came back nearly instantly to level the match at 3-3.

"Adrian pushed me but I think he felt it towards the latter end of the game". A double-eight got him to within one, but Wright steadied the ship after finding double-10.

"I knew he was shattered and I had to take advantage, even though I love him". I haven't played like that for a long time to be honest and it's my last day at the Winter Gardens tomorrow so I'm going out with a bang.

Who will win the World Matchplay final at the world famous Empress Ballroom? I don't think he's been right all week'.

"I didn't have any expectations at the start of the week", said Lewis, who recently underwent hand surgery.

Peter Wright takes on Daryl Gurney in Saturday's opening semifinal.

Lewis struck a neat 72 finish against the darts to move 5-4 up, but it was the in-form 56-year-old who found double six to level things up in what was turning into a highly-intoxicating encounter.

Gurney, who won through to the last four in Blackpool for the first time, made the more composed start in the race to 17 legs, and quickly opened up a 4-1 advantage as Wright looked unusually off-colour.

The unseeded 31-year-old then rallied out of nowhere to win four successive legs to capitalise on a slump from Wright although the next two went with throw as the Scotsman edged 12-11 ahead.

Wright responded with a finish from 100 to break back but a nervy miss at double 16 in the following leg allowed Gurney to win the leg and he followed this up with another pressurised hold - after Snakebite missed double 19 - to move within one at 15-14.

Wright will be looking to improve on his average of 93 in a heated semi-final against Northern Ireland's Gurney, which included some verbal exchanges between the two players. I'm over the moon - I really am.


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