Status: 30/12/2022 9:31 p.m.
On the strength of a sovereign success over the Scottish Alan Soutar, Gabriel Clemens reached the quarter-finals of the world darts championship. Now the most difficult of all exams awaits you in “Ally Pally”.
Gabriel Clemens wrote German darts history with a dominating performance. The 39-year-old was the first German to reach the World Cup quarter-finals in London with a 4-1 victory over Alan Soutar and can now play against Welsh world number one Gerwyn Price.
The ‘German Giant’, as Clemens is known, was superior to the weak Scotsman from the first set and dominated the match against the underdog, who had previously kicked out two World Cup seeded pros in Daryl Gurney and Danny Nopert. Even after a brief drop in performance in the second set, Clemens didn’t lose confidence: “I never thought I could lose. But when the double didn’t come for a while, it would have been nice sure could be tight again.”
Clemens writes darts history
Two years ago, Saarlander Clemens was the first German to reach the knockout stages of the World Cup – and is now the first to reach the tournament round of 2.5 million pounds (about 2.82 million euros) at the Alexandra Palace last eight stands. The duel with the previously flawless muscleman Price, who is one of the big favorites, now awaits the new year. For Darts Germany, this will be the biggest game in history.
In the tournament so far, Clemens had beaten Irishman William O’Connor (3-0) and Wales’ Jim Williams (4-3). Like Soutar, the two were unranked, but Scotland’s firefighter and guide dog trainer was seen as the biggest hurdle so far. The 44-year-old has worked fire department shifts between games in London and is also on New Year’s Eve duty. When asked when he sleeps, Soutar replied: “In January”.
Loud German fans at “Ally Pally”
Loudly cheered by more than 500 German fans, Clemens started strong. The very first recording brought the maximum score of 180 points – and thrilled the colorfully dressed fans, who, as always, chanted “Oh, how beautiful”. Clemens got the first set without any problems.
The game was full of mistakes and wasn’t as entertaining and high-class as the third-round duel with Williams, but Clemens still had his highlights this time around. When he mastered a 1-1 finish in the third set against Bullseye, he cheered exuberantly towards his box for his girlfriend Lisa. The fourth sentence turned into a thriller, which Clemens decided to win with nerves of steel. After that, the game was quickly decided.
Next opponent: Primus Price
After three emotional individual successes at the World Championships, which sportingly fell into the “compulsory victory” category, Clemens now faces the ultimate test. Ex-rugby player Price is fit and needs the £500,000 title to stay on top of the darts world the day after the World Cup final on January 3.
Clemens is happy about the task: “Before the start of the tournament, I read that I might be expected to win a game here. Now I’m not only here for Christmas, but also for the first times for New Years Eve is fine. I just watch myself. If I can play again and be there at the right times, I think I can be dangerous for Gerwyn Price.
Smith doesn’t give Cullen a chance
In the all-English duel between number four and number 13 in the world rankings, Michael Smith clearly won 4:1 against Joe Cullen. Smith, who nearly fell to Germany’s Martin Schindler in the previous round, played a solid 103.25 average and was also well ahead of Cullen with 40% in doubles (93.86 and 31%).
Cross fails at Dobey
In the first game of the evening session, another co-favorite said goodbye. Rob Cross, still world champion in 2018 after beating Phil Taylor in the final, lost 4-2 in the next all-English duel to Chris Dobey, who played furiously at times.
Both players found themselves above the 100 average, but Dobey had the best responses in crucial moments. Among other things, he achieved the best possible result with a 170 – this was only the third “Big Fish” during this World Cup.
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