UK Open and Super Series blog

By Henry Cheal

UK Open –

An inspired Cross arrived in Milton Keynes for the UK Open in the hope he can recover most if not all of his ranking money from the tournament two years ago. In that tournament he came runners-up to Nathan Aspinall.

Cross was up against Andy Hamilton in the last 64. At one point he was losing 7-3 and was close to the point of no return but managed to win seven of the next eight legs to seal a remarkable comeback and 10-8 win. Cross averaged 92.5 and progressed through to the last 32 for the 5th year in succession.

In the last 32 Cross took on James Wade. He settled into a 3-1 lead before Wade stepped up his game to win five legs in a row to lead 6-3 and won each of those legs in under 15 darts. Those five legs made all the difference as each shared the remaining legs and it wasn’t enough for Cross to try and mount another comeback like he did in the match previously. Despite this defeat, Cross played some great stuff and averaged 101.7.

Super Series 2 –

Players Championship 5 –

Cross started the second instalment of the Super Series against Steve Brown in what was a convincing 6-3 for him. The turning point of the match was when Cross checked out 140 to increase his lead to 5-2. 

Then in the following round against Chris Dobey, yet again, Cross showed his fighting spirit as he overcame a 5-2 deficit to win the match in the last leg decider with an 18 darter. Cross performed a more then respectable 97.9 average.

Cross upped his game even more in the last 32 encounter with Dave Chisnall and averaged 101.4 but it wasn’t enough as Chisnall averaged a far superior 107 in a 6-3 win over the former world champion. 

Players Championship 6 –

The second day of the Super Series was a day to forget as Cross lost in his opening round match to Niels Zonneveld 6-4 and averaged 95.

Players Championship 7 –

In Cross’ first match the following day, he took on Peter Jacques in the hope to bounce back after his first round exit. The first 10 legs were shared and Cross even hit a high checkout of 143. Cross sealed the game off with a 17 darter in the last leg.

The following game against Kim Huybrechts was almost exactly like the first. In a game of nip and tuck and just like in the first game, it went to a last leg decider. Unfortunately, despite his best efforts, Cross lost the game.

Players Championship 8 –

In the last Super Series event Cross was up against Justin Pipe in the first round. Pipe raced into a 3-1 lead before Cross won five of the six legs in 16 darts or less to progress through. Pipe averaged only 82 while Cross averaged 98.

Cross then took on Karel Sedlacek in the second round. Cross succumbed a 4-1 lead as the game reached the full distance, but fortunately Cross finished the game off right at the end with a 15 dart leg.

In the last 32 Cross faced Brendan Dolan but did not lead in that game once as he lost 6-2 and averaged only 92, to Dolan’s 99.6.