Just one step from the final and two cracking matches to decide who will take their place on the prestigious stage.
Three names could have been predicted,and one unlikely name has fought his way through.
First match is Michael Smith(pic) against Nathan Aspinall (pic). On paper it looks appears Smith very much has the upper hand. Although this tournament has seen the emergence of some fresh talent, and Aspinall is definitely one of those talents. You do not get the the semi final of the World Darts Championship by chance. You have to be an exceptional player and have the will to win. Aspinall has shown his passion on the stage, whilst keeping a cool head when in a losing position. He hit a 100 average (rounded up) in his quarter final victory over Brendan Dolan, which he won quite comfortably. He will need to be playing at that standard again, and there is no reason why he can't repeat that performance.
He certainly has the hunger to perform well, although he really needs to get off to a good start as Smith will come out with all guns blazing.
Michael Smith played near to the top of his game as he defeated the impressive Luke Humphries in the quarter final, averaging 103. He will need to play around that level in order to keep Aspinall at bay, but assuming he does that, he may be able to establish a decent lead. Smith seems to perform better when leading, so it will be interesting to see how he performs if Aspinall takes the first set.
Smith has been in excellent form this year and has got to this stage with less 'trouble' than the other semi finalists, so he will need to keep fully focused, as this is his toughest match yet. Smith is full of confidence and is mentored by Gary Anderson, so he will be given some very good Champion's advice of what it takes to reach the final.
I predict a Smith win, but Aspinall will give him a tough match. Perhaps 6-4?
The second semi final, is perhaps the most mouth watering match of the tournament as Michael van Gerwen (pic) takes on Gary Anderson (pic). These are the number one and two players in the world at the moment, and have both won multiple World Championships. Both are big scorers and will both average over 100. It is very difficult to call a winner here. The bookmakers think van Gerwen will win, but I'm not sure what that is based on. Prior to the quarter finals, I would have agreed, but the way Anderson played against Dave Chisnall, showed that Anderson wants this title and it will take an excellent performance to defeat him. And maybe the only person that can stop him is van Gerwen. Van Gerwen said he put a lot of pressure on himself to play unbelieveable darts against Ryan Joyce in the quarter final and this lead to a mid-game 'slump', where Joyce won a set back and Michael's average dipped somewhat. Van Gerwen needs to make sure that he doesn't apply this sort of pressure in the semifinal, because if Anderson goes two or three sets up, it will be exceedingly difficult to catch up. That said, this is Michael van Gerwen and he has won, by far, the most titles this year of any player, whilst seemingly not at his best. He will be ready and Anderson will know this.
Anderson must maintain the form of the quarter final, and finishing will be key to his success. No doubt he will score very heavily, but occasionally his finishing can let him down. If he gets that right then this could be his year. However any mistakes will be punished by van Gerwen.
Very hard to predict. I think it will be 6-5, and maybe van Gerwen might just snatch it, although it really is a very difficult call. This could also be the match where we see the first 9-dart finish of the tournament too!
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