2018 William Hill World Championship Results

Updated: January 1, 2018

As the favorites continued to fall after the Christmas break, Rob Cross emerged as the surprise – yet totally deserving – winner of the 2018 William Hill World Championship at the Alexandra Palace.  In a final of extraordinary darts and extraordinary drama, Cross followed up his incredible defeat of World #1 Michael van Gerwen with a remarkable 7-2 demolition of 16-time World Champ, Phil Taylor,

As Taylor bids farewell to a history-making career, Cross has emerged as one of the main contenders for the title of “world’s best”.  The 27-year-old from Sussex wasn’t even born when Taylor captured his first world title back in 1990, and in just one year on the PDC circuit has gone from nothing to one of the game’s elite.  A year ago, he wasn’t even ranked.  By November, he had risen to World #20.  Just six weeks later, he is Champion of the World!

When the players returned to the stage last Wednesday, Peter Wright and Simon Whitlock became the next two big guns to fall; Wright to Jamie Lewis, and Whitlock to Darren Webster.  By close of play on Thursday, the Quarter-Final lineup looked like this : Jamie Lewis vs Darren Webster, Dimitri Van den Bergh vs Rob Cross,  Michael van Gerwen vs Raymond van Barneveld, Phil Taylor vs Gary Anderson.

Van Gerwen edged out Barney in a tense nine-setter, but Taylor it was who grabbed the headlines with a 5-3 victory over the lone remaining Scot.  Like MVG, Rob Cross went to a ninth set, but like MVG, he was in the semis.  So too was Welshman Jamie Lewis, who took care of Webster in straight sets.

With Lewis facing Taylor, and van Gerwen squaring off against Cross, fans were looking to a Taylor-Van Gerwen final.  Taylor made no mistake, and eased through to the final by a score of 6-1.  Lewis, it must be said, missed a few crucial doubles, but we all know that you can’t do that against Phil.

There were some costly misses in the other semi also, but they were from the World #1…  Crucially, van Gerwen could not finish the match when he had the chances, and Rob Cross gratefully stepped in to win a last-leg tiebreaker.

By now, Rob Cross was emerging as serious contender, but things were looking good for Taylor to go out on a high with a 17th World Championship win.  After four legs, Cross was a set up with a 12-darter and a brace of 14’s.  The second set also went to four, and a beautiful 167 gave the outsider a 2-0 advantage.  An 11- darter and then a 153 check put Cross further ahead.

Taylor wasn’t playing badly by any means, but he wasn’t being allowed to take the initiative.  A vintage fourth set, spurred by a fabulous finish from 151, got Taylor on the board.  It looked even better for The Power” as he wired the D12 for a perfect nine-darter to start the fifth.  Unfortunately, three missed darts at D12 and D6 cost him the leg, and Cross followed with legs of 11 and 14 for a 4-1 lead.  Despite a 123 check, and a narrow miss from 161, Taylor was soon 6-1 down, and just one set from defeat.

The seemingly inevitable was postponed temporarily as Taylor forced a ninth set, but two 13’s and a 12 (59, 140, 162, 140) later, it was all over, and we had witnessed perhaps the greatest final of all time.  In the shape of Rob Cross, we also witnessed a star being born…

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