By Phil Lanning
ROB CROSS joked he has “the hump” with Luke Humphries but is ready again to be a big-hitter in the majors.
The 2018 World Champion lost a final to the on-form Berkshire star for the second week in a row at the European Darts Grand Prix final in Stuttgart.
But Cross, 31, is delighted to be finding the form that helped him win four major titles in as many years.
He said: “I’ve definitely got the hump with Luke. Seriously though, he’s a great bloke and I’m genuinely pleased for him.
“I’m glad I don’t struggle with ‘majors’ to win them – these are ten times harder!
“Credit to Luke, I thought he played great, he was the better player and if he hit doubles earlier I was out of there earlier. He’s superb and I’ve got a lot of time for him.
“Personally, I’m feeling stronger all the time. It’s a nice feeling to take your practice game to the stage and get the results you think you deserve.
“There was a period of time when the form is good and the results don’t come and that’s hard to deal with.
“Now it’s about taking this form into the big majors. I know I can do some damage.
“When I wasn’t picked for the Premier League I vowed to make the most of extra time to work on my practice routines and do well on the Euro tour. I’ve done exactly that and it’s job done.”
Cross began the Euro Grand Prix with a deciding leg win over Jelle Klaasen, as a 14-darter snatched victory.
He then began Sunday’s final stages in scintillating fashion by landing a 170 checking and finishing six doubles from as many attempts in a third round win over Krzysztof Ratajski.
Cross then overcame Rowby-John Rodriguez in the quarter-finals by a 6-4 scoreline before averaging an unstoppable 110.73 in his semi-final defeat of Damon Heta.
The final once again went to a deciding leg after Cross fought back from 7-5 down.
Cross was first to a finish in the final leg, but was unable to give himself a dart at a double on a 118 finish, and Humphries stepped in to complete a 108 combination for glory.