Home » VIDEO. Nathan Aspinall wins fifth Premier League evening after a nerve-wracking duel with Luke Humphries and demonstration against Rob Cross

VIDEO. Nathan Aspinall wins fifth Premier League evening after a nerve-wracking duel with Luke Humphries and demonstration against Rob Cross

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Michael van Gerwen started the fifth Premier League evening with three victories under his belt. The Dutchman went in search of an unprecedented fourth consecutive weekly title in Exeter on Thursday. But then Van Gerwen had to pass world champion Luke Humphries in the first round.

After a mediocre match from both men, ‘Cool Hand Luke’ came out on top. Remarkable, because Van Gerwen threw a higher average than his opponent and was better at doubles. Still, Mighty Mike went down, with a clear 6-3 score. An early exit for Van Gerwen, who will play at the UK Open next weekend.

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In the second game of the evening, Peter Wright lost 6-4. The Scot loses in the first round for the fifth time in a row, leaving him with zero points and last place in the rankings. Nathan Aspinall can go to the next round.

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A little later it was up to Rob Cross and Gerwyn Price. And what a walkover that would be. The latter suffered a whitewash, but still managed to save the day with a 160 finish. That didn’t help much anymore, because Cross put the 6-1 on the board a set later. The Brit reached the semi-finals with an excellent average of 109 and 85% on his checkouts.

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Lethality on doubles is rewarded: just ask Luke Littler. The teenage sensation knocked out former world champion Michael Smith in the first round with an average of 107, although not much higher than his opponent’s (101). Yet the difference was big. Final score: 6-2.

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Semi-finals

The first semi-final was between Humphries and Aspinall, ultimately the final destination for the world champions on match day five. Aspinall seemed on his way to a telling victory with a 1-5 lead, but Humphries fought back. With an equal score on the board going into the last set, Aspinall sealed his opponent’s fate by throwing out at 160. And whether the discharge was great for the first finalist.

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In a replay of the semi-final at the World Cup a few months ago, it was Cross who came out on top against Littler this time. The seventeen-year-old top talent thought he could hang on for a while, but was unable to box his way to the final today and was dropped in Exeter (6-3).

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Aspinall demonstrates

In the final, Aspinall left no stone unturned by Cross, who barely performed at the same level as the evening progressed. ‘The Asp’ lost to Van Gerwen last week, so his first victory in the campaign was more than satisfying. Also because world champion Humphries was also defeated in the semi-finals.

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