REIGNING champion Daryl Gurney continued his march towards back-to-back Unibet World Grand Prix titles with a 3-0 win over Gary Anderson, while Michael van Gerwen, Peter Wright and Mensur Suljovic also progressed to the semi-finals on Thursday.
An impressive display from Gurney saw the Northern Irishman land three ton-plus finishes and miss just three darts at finishing double on night five of the double-start event at the Citywest Convention Centre in Dublin.
World number five Gurney struck two 110 finishes to take the opening set and continued his impressive play to double his lead.
Former runner-up Anderson, who was seeking a fifth televised title of the year, was unable to find a way to break down the Northern Irishman, who wrapped up a convincing win to continue his quest to win the £100,000 to prize.
“To beat Gary 3-0 in any competition is very flattering,” said Gurney, who will meet Van Gerwen in the semi-finals.
“To beat a player of his calibre you have to be on top of your game all the way through and I was tonight.
“I felt nervous but I was fully focused on the job and thankfully I got it done.”
Three-time champion Van Gerwen posted the tenth highest average ever recorded at the World Grand Prix, of 101.54, in his 3-1 triumph over Dave Chisnall.
The world number one had to be at his best to make it through a high-class encounter, as Chisnall went down to defeat with the highest losing average ever seen at the tournament at 97.78.
Van Gerwen’s 67% double-in accuracy proved to be the difference for the Dutchman, who finished the job in style to set up a final four clash with Gurney.
“We should have games like this all the time, it was incredible,” said Van Gerwen. “Dave played a phenomenal game, I think it was the best game ever seen in Dublin.
“I need to keep my concentration for tomorrow, there’s still a long way to go – I want to win this title, it’s as simple as that.”
World number six Suljovic booked his place in the semi-finals for the third time in four years with a 3-2 win over Gerwyn Price.
Another high-quality match saw Suljovic take the opening set before Price, who was starring in his first Dublin quarter-final, roared back to lead 2-1.
Suljovic levelled it up to take the match to a tense deciding set which saw the Austrian crowd favourite punish Price’s misses to keep his hopes of a third televised final of the year alive.
“It is a brilliant feeling being in the semi-finals, I think the double-in double-out format is my tournament,” said Suljovic, who will take on Wright in the semi-finals.
“I kept telling myself ‘never give up’ and that is why I won this game.
“The crowd were brilliant, when I was feeling down and like I was going to lose they started singing my name and it helped me focus.”
World number two Wright won through to the final four for the first time in Dublin thanks to a 3-2 victory over James Wilson.
Wright looked to be cruising to the finish line as he took the opening two sets, only for Wilson, who was appearing in his first World Grand Prix quarter-final, to battle back and take the match to a deciding set.
The fifth set saw Wright average over ten points more than Wilson as the Scot pulled away to win it 3-0 and survive a tough test from the determined Yorkshireman.
“It was looking like I was going to win 3-0 without being pushed but I’m glad I was pushed because it gets me ready for my semi-final,” said Wright.
“James is a top player, he struggled at the start but then he started doing what he can do – he’s a fighter and I knew he would never give up.”
Looking ahead to his semi-final with Suljovic, Wright added: “Last year I played him here and I let him get away with it but I’m a better player than last year and so is he so it should be an awesome game.”
The Unibet World Grand Prix continues on Friday with the two semi-final ties, which will be broadcast live on Sky Sports and worldwide through the PDC’s series of international broadcast partners, as well as at PDCTV-HD for Rest of the World Subscribers.
Following the quarter-finals, Van Gerwen is now the odds-on 1/2 favourite to take the £100,000 title on Saturday night with sponsors Unibet, and is 2/13 to win his semi-final with Gurney.
Gurney is the 9/1 outsider as he bids to retain the title, with Wright 7/2 and Suljovic 9/2 as they bid to win the double-start event for the first time.
Unibet World Grand Prix
Thursday October 4
Mensur Suljovic 3-2 Gerwyn Price
Peter Wright 3-2 James Wilson
Daryl Gurney 3-0 Gary Anderson
Michael van Gerwen 3-1 Dave Chisnall
Friday October 5 (7pm)
Peter Wright v Mensur Suljovic
Michael van Gerwen v Daryl Gurney
Best of seven sets
Latest Unibet Odds
Outright Winner Odds
1/2 Michael van Gerwen
7/2 Peter Wright
9/2 Mensur Suljovic
9/1 Daryl Gurney
Semi-Final Match Odds
41/50 Peter Wright v Evens Mensur Suljovic
2/13 Michael van Gerwen v 9/2 Daryl Gurney
Odds courtesy Unibet.co.uk. Subject to fluctuation.