Gary Anderson is through to the semi-finals of the Melbourne Darts Masters.
Gary Anderson is through to the semi-finals of the Melbourne Darts Masters. Justin Setterfield

Scot gets shot at Darts Masters final

GARY Anderson will take aim at close friend Michael Smith in the Melbourne Darts Masters semi-final on Sunday night after seeing off the challenge of Australian qualifier Damon Heta at Hisense Arena on Saturday night.

Anderson had to stave off a rally from Perth's Heta, who had upset fellow Aussie and best mate Kyle Anderson on night one in Melbourne.

The Flying Scotsman eventually held off Heta to win 10-7 and said he hoped there was more to come against his good friend in the last four.

"Last night I played really well but tonight I was not quite on it," he said.

"I am glad it was a longer game tonight because in the short format anything can happen. But in the longer form you can make a few mistakes and hopefully get back in the game."

Smith, who won the Shanghai Masters last month, produced a great comeback to defeat world champion Rob Cross in a thriller 10-9 in the opening quarter-final.

The St Helens man was 9-6 down but produced finishes of 120, 107, 99 and 122 to claim a remarkable win and set up the clash with Anderson.


Gary Anderson looks on during the final of the 2017  PDC World Darts Championships in London. Picture: Bryn Lennon/Getty Images
Gary Anderson is determined to make the most of his opportunity in Melbourne.

The Scot said he was looking forward to playing his mate but was aiming to make it to the final.

"I need to up my game but so does he," Anderson said.

"Rob let him off tonight but hopefully I won't let him off tomorrow.

"Michael is superb on the practice boards and once he brings that to the big stage he will walk everything and I have been saying that for years.

"But he's still got to take that step.

"If I play my game I will win, if I don't, I will get an early night."

On the other side of the draw, Peter Wright was too good for Dutch five-time world champion Raymond van Barneveld 10-4.

Wright will play Michael van Gerwen in the semi-final.

Van Gerwen, who won the Auckland Masters last week, survived a big scare against Aussie favourite Simon Whitlock who took an 8-4 lead in their quarter-final.

Whitlock then had chances to stretch the lead and upset the world No.1 but was unable to convert.

Van Gerwen fought back to take the next six legs to win the match 10-8.

Semi-final line-up:

Michael van Gerwen v Peter Wright

Gary Anderson v Michael Smith.