July 24, 2023 - Matchplay Glory For Greaves

A Week In Darts - Matchplay Glory For Greaves And Aspinall

Welcome to Darts Corner’s round-up of what went down in the world of darts during the last seven days (July 17-23, 2023). From maiden World Matchplay titles for Beau Greaves and Nathan Aspinall to a darts fanatic winning big on the lottery, here’s our look back at a week in darts.

GREAVES CONTINUES TO DOMINATE

A bumper final day of this year’s World Matchplay saw the Women’s World Matchplay take place at the Winter Gardens, with the top seed Beau Greaves winning the title on her debut.

Since making her return to the PDC Women’s Series in August of last year, the 19-year-old has been a dominant force, winning 15 out of the next 20 events on the circuit.

The teenager’s imperious form saw her qualify for the Winter Gardens showpiece event as the number one seed, and she lived up to the pre-tournament favourite tag beating Japan’s Mikuru Suzuki 6-1 in the final.

Sunday’s play started with Greaves seeing off Noa-Lynn van Leuven 4-0 in the opening quarter-final. Van Leuven was making history as the first trans woman to compete in a PDC televised event.

Suzuki, one of five debutants in the eight-player field, impressed with a 92.16 average in a 4-2 win over Aileen de Graaf in the quarter-finals, before getting past Lisa Ashton 5-3 to progress to the final.

But Greaves, who had averaged 89.51 in a 5-3 win over Ireland’s Robyn Byrne in the semi-finals, proved too strong for Suzuki in the decider, dropping just one leg to win 6-1 and secure the title, along with spots in the Grand Slam of Darts and PDC World Championship at the end of the year.

ASPINALL CRUISES TO MATCHPLAY GLORY

Nathan Aspinall was the toast of Blackpool at the weekend as he stormed to the World Matchplay title with an 18-6 win over Jonny Clayton in Sunday night’s final.

‘The Asp’ produced an inspired display winning 11 consecutive legs from 5-5 to pull away from his Welsh opponent, firing in seven 180s and taking out five ton-plus checkouts to win the title.

It was a second PDC major title for the Stockport star, who won the 2019 UK Open before losing out in the finals of the Premier League, World Grand Prix and Grand Slam of Darts.

Aspinall recorded wins over Krzysztof Ratajski (10-7), Danny Noppert (11-9), Chris Dobey (16-12) and Joe Cullen (17-9) to reach his fifth major final, where he got the better of Clayton to pocket the £200,000 top prize.

This was the 30th staging of the World Matchplay – the biggest darts tournament of the summer – and Aspinall is just the 12th player to add his name to the Phil Taylor Trophy. His victory also sees him climb to a career high of fifth on the PDC Order of Merit.

The 2023 edition of the event featured several big-name casualties in the early rounds, as defending champion Michael van Gerwen suffered a shock defeat to Brendan Dolan in the first round. Meanwhile, world number one Michael Smith, 2021 champion Peter Wright and last year’s runner-up Gerwyn Price all bowed out in the last 16.

Check out our World Matchplay Darts collection for darts from the tournament or our countdown of our top 30 matches from the past 30 years of the World Matchplay!

AROUND THE BOARD

Nathan Aspinall and Beau Greaves were not the only two players to lift silverware at the Winter Gardens last week. For the second year running, the World Disability Darts Association (WDDA) held the finals of their World Matchplay events on stage in Blackpool.

The finals took place on stage on Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday evenings as part of the pre-event build-up at the World Matchplay. Vicky Martin (ladies), Gareth Smith (compris) and Garry Bennett (classic) were all victorious in their finals.

Away from the oche, a keen darts player from Cornwall has won big on a lottery scratch card and intends to put the winnings towards a trip to London to attend the PDC World Championship in December.

It was reported last week that Clive Bray, 58, a full-time carer, bagged £300,000 on a National Lottery Scratchcard.

He said: "As a keen darts player - I have played at county level and in numerous exhibition matches against some of the world’s best and coming from a long line of keen darts players - being able to attend the World Championships is another dream come true. I guess you could say I am feeling pretty chuffed!"

Check out ourWorld Matchplay Darts collection for darts from the tournament or our countdown of ourtop 30 matches from the past 30 years of the World Matchplay!

Pictures: PDC

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