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MICHAEL VAN GERWEN came from the brink of defeat to edge Adrian Lewis in the PDC World Championship quarter-finals last night.
The Dutchman looked down and out with Lewis, who was eyeing his third straight world title, throwing for the match in the ninth set at Alexandra Palace.
But after Lewis missed his two chances at double top in the fourth leg, van Gerwen won three straight legs to secure a 5-4 win.
Van Gerwen, who averaged 102.73 during the match and had checkouts of 120 and 108, said momentum swung with Lewis’ two misses.
“It’s a wonderful feeling to win such an unbelievable match against a superb player like Adrian,” he said.
“My scoring was really high throughout the contest, but I kept on missing doubles early on and that gave Adrian chances to pull back.
“I felt like my chance had gone when Adrian had those chances at double top, but when I missed and took out the 83 finish, that felt really big and I think he knew that too.”
Awaiting Van Gerwen in the semi-finals is James Wade, who reached his third world championship semi-final in five years in another stunning contest, edging Wes Newton 5-4.
Newton made a strong start and had four chances to go up 3-1, but missed opportunities cost him and swung the contest in Wade’s favour.
Wade won three straight sets before Newton lifted to send the match into a deciding ninth set.
The world number three proved too good in an enthralling set, winning by three legs to one to advance to the last four.
“Wes was the better player for much of the early stages and should have gone 3-1 ahead,” Wade said after averaging 92.89 in comparison to Newton’s 97.15.
“I was given the chance to come and I managed to take the opportunity but went asleep after going 4-2 up, and that’s a bit disappointing.
“I’ve managed to win the final set though, and the two double fives in the last two legs, so that I hit big shots under pressure.
“I certainly haven’t played particularly well in this tournament yet but I’m into another semi-final and if I take my opportunities in tomorrow’s semi-final then I could go all the way.”
Phil Taylor and Raymond van Barneveld will clash in the other semi-final.