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Nic Ladds 20th Mar 2010 - 19:11

Bates' joy in Crawley

BARRIE BATES won his first tournament since 2006 with a narrow 6-5 defeat of Denis Ovens in Saturday's Players Championship final writes the PDC's David Allen.

The Welshman picked up three titles and reached the UK Open four years ago in his most successful period of form and, having overcome his foot problems, enjoyed his best run since to claim the £6,000 title at the K2 Centre in Crawley.

He overcame some leading names in the process, defeating seeded players Co Stompe and Jamie Caven to reach the last 16, where he overcame his fellow countryman Richie Burnett 6-3.

In-form Mark Walsh was defeated 6-2 in the quarter-finals and Essex's Steve Maish fell in the semis, before he came from behind to win the final.

Ovens made a fine start with two breaks of throw in the opening three legs to lead 3-0, including an 11-dart finish, before Bates landed double 16 to get off the mark and double 12 to reduce the gap to one.

Ovens edged two of the next three to move a leg away from victory at 5-3, but missed two darts for the match in leg nine and a further one dart for victory in the tenth as Bates forced a decider.

Three ton-plus scores from the Welshman put him ahead in the final leg, and he took out double six for a 14-darter to claim victory.

"It's great and I'm delighted," said Bates. "It's been a long time since my last win but I'm feeling good and playing well.

"I've been practising my finishing a lot and that was probably the difference throughout the day, I took my chances and am thrilled."

The defeat denied Ovens a second PDC ProTour win of the year, although he made a superb fightback from 5-2 down to defeat world number three James Wade in the semi-finals.

He had also been a narrow 6-5 winner against Vincent van der Voort and Rick Lowther in the latter stages, having also seen off Whyte & Mackay Premier League Darts stars Mervyn King and Simon Whitlock on the day.

Maish's run to the semi-finals was his best performance since October 2008, and included a remarkable comeback from 5-2 down against Mark Dudbridge in the last eight, hitting finishes of 141, 121 and 110 in taking the win.

Dudbridge's run saw him reach a third successive PDC ProTour quarter-final, although he rode his luck in the last 16 as Mark Webster came from 5-2 down to level before missing double top for a 160 finish in the decider, allowing the Bristol man to check out 120 to progress.

Tony Eccles reached the quarter-finals for the first time in 12 months before losing to Wade, while Vincent van der Voort - a Players Championship winner two weeks ago - also reached the last eight.

World number two Raymond van Barneveld went down 6-3 to Adrian Lewis in the second round in his first outing of the year on the PDC ProTour.

Andy Hamilton hit a nine-dart finish during a win over Alan Tabern in round three, before losing to Maish, and picked up a £3,600 bonus for the achievement.

Players Championship 8
Preliminary Round

Darren Webster 6-1 Par Riihonen
Chris Thompson 6-2 Dave Honey
Taro Yachi 6-1 Jim McKevitt
Matt Clark 6-4 Mark Frost
Justin Pipe 6-2 Gary Blades
Mark Carter 6-1 Didier de Vuyst
Dean Allsopp 6-4 Kevin McDine
Lee Williams 6-4 Mark Cox
Tony Martin 6-4 Kevin Harris
Lee White 6-5 Alex Tinsley
Colin Monk 6-4 Tony Ayres
Nigel Heydon 6-5 Matt Padgett
Rick Lowther 6-0 Andy Pearce
Tony Randell 6-2 Andy Fordham

First Round
Mark Walsh (1) 6-1 Robert Alford
Ian McFarlane 6-1 Tom Martin
Kirk Shepherd (32) 6-4 Steven Pearson
Andy Hutchings 6-3 Dave Askew
Michael van Gerwen (16) 6-2 Ian Eames
Wayne Mardle 6-1 Steve Perkins
Andy Smith (17) 6-5 Steve Evans
Aodhagan O'Neill 6-1 Darren Webster
Martyn Turner 6-5 Steve Beaton (8)
Stuart Bousfield 6-5 Mick McGowan
Richie Burnett 6-4 Peter Wright (25)
Chris Thompson 6-5 Arron Monk
Jamie Caven (9) 6-0 Rocco Maes
Jimmy Mann 6-4 Paul Williams
Barrie Bates 6-4 Co Stompe (24)
Taro Yachi 6-2 Mark Stephenson
Adrian Lewis (5) 6-4 Wayne Atwood
Raymond van Barneveld 6-3 Chris Loudon
Mark Webster (28) 6-3 Simon Burt
James Barton 6-2 Matt Clark
Wayne Jones (12) 6-5 Adrian Gray
Stuart Dutton 6-1 Andy Mason
Mark Dudbridge (21) 6-1 Stephen Hardy
Justin Pipe 6-0 Shaun Dring
Steve Maish 6-4 Colin Lloyd (4)
Anton Liscsey 6-3 Darren Johnson
Steve Hine (29) 6-1 Darren Weaver
Geoff Whitworth 6-2 Mark Carter
Andy Hamilton (13) 6-2 Anastasia Dobromyslova
Tony Clark 6-1 Steve Watts
Alan Tabern (20) 6-0 Steve Grubb
Mark Lawrence 6-1 Dean Allsopp
Colin Osborne (2) 6-5 Louis Blundell
Dennis Smith 6-3 Michael Banard
Tony Eccles (31) 6-3 Steven Perry
Ian Jopling 6-1 Daz Mawer
Paul Nicholson (15) 6-4 Toon Greebe
Darren Latham 6-1 Jon Archer
Robert Thornton (18) 6-4 Ian Lever
Lee Williams 6-1 Andy Relf
James Wade (7) 6-1 Gary Eastwood
Mareno Michels 6-4 Martyn Bevan
Steve Brown (26) 6-4 Nigel Birch
Tony Martin 6-5 Ron Atwill
Anthony Urmston-Toft 6-4 Ronnie Baxter (10)
Kevin Dowling 6-4 Dylan Duo
Brendan Dolan (23) 6-4 Dave Ladley
Chris Mason 6-4 Lee White
John Quantock 6-5 Wes Newton (6)
Alex Roy 6-2 Jimmy O'Regan
Jelle Klaasen (27) 6-0 Mark Hylton
Colin Monk 6-0 Matthew Wenham
Vincent van der Voort (11) 6-5 John Part
Matt Draper 6-2 Dave Ansell
Kevin Painter (22) 6-5 Joe Cullen
Steve Farmer 6-3 Nigel Heydon
Gary Anderson (3) 6-0 Robbie Newland
Jason Clark 6-3 Sam Allen
Nick Fullwell 6-5 Peter Manley (30)
Rick Lowther 6-4 Steve Musson
Mervyn King (14) 6-3 Gary Mawson
Mark Jones 6-3 Lee Hayes
Denis Ovens (19) 6-2 Peter Hudson
Simon Whitlock 6-4 Tony Randell

Second Round
Mark Walsh 6-2 Ian McFarlane
Andy Hutchings 6-3 Kirk Shepherd
Wayne Mardle 6-2 Michael van Gerwen
Aodhagan O'Neill 6-5 Andy Smith
Martyn Turner 6-3 Stuart Bousfield
Richie Burnett 6-4 Chris Thompson
Jamie Caven 6-1 Jimmy Mann
Barrie Bates 6-4 Taro Yachi
Adrian Lewis 6-3 Raymond van Barneveld
Mark Webster 6-2 James Barton
Wayne Jones 6-5 Stuart Dutton
Mark Dudbridge 6-3 Justin Pipe
Steve Maish 6-3 Anton Liscsey
Steve Hine 6-0 Geoff Whitworth
Andy Hamilton 6-0 Tony Clark
Alan Tabern 6-1 Mark Lawrence
Dennis Smith 6-4 Colin Osborne
Tony Eccles 6-2 Ian Jopling
Paul Nicholson 6-0 Darren Latham
Lee Williams 6-5 Robert Thornton
James Wade 6-3 Mareno Michels
Steve Brown 6-2 Tony Martin
Anthony Urmston-Toft 6-4 Kevin Dowling
Chris Mason 6-5 Brendan Dolan
John Quantock 6-4 Alex Roy
Jelle Klaasen 6-3 Colin Monk
Vincent van der Voort 6-5 Matt Draper
Kevin Painter 6-4 Steve Farmer
Jason Clark 6-3 Gary Anderson
Rick Lowther 6-1 Nick Fullwell
Mervyn King 6-1 Mark Jones
Denis Ovens 6-3 Simon Whitlock
Losers £200

Third Round
Mark Walsh 6-2 Andy Hutchings
Aodhagan O'Neill 6-4 Wayne Mardle
Richie Burnett 6-3 Martyn Turner
Barrie Bates 6-4 Jamie Caven
Mark Webster 6-4 Adrian Lewis
Mark Dudbridge 6-5 Wayne Jones
Steve Maish 6-5 Steve Hine
Andy Hamilton 6-4 Alan Tabern - Andy Hamilton hits nine-dart finish
Tony Eccles 6-0 Dennis Smith
Lee Williams 6-4 Paul Nicholson
James Wade 6-3 Steve Brown
Chris Mason 6-3 Anthony Urmston-Toft
Jelle Klaasen 6-4 John Quantock
Vincent van der Voort 6-4 Kevin Painter
Rick Lowther 6-3 Jason Clark
Denis Ovens 6-2 Mervyn King
Losers £300

Fourth Round
Mark Walsh 6-1 Aodhagan O'Neill
Barrie Bates 6-3 Richie Burnett
Mark Dudbridge 6-5 Mark Webster
Steve Maish 6-3 Andy Hamilton
Tony Eccles 6-5 Lee Williams
James Wade 6-5 Chris Mason
Vincent van der Voort 6-4 Jelle Klaasen
Denis Ovens 6-5 Rick Lowther
Losers £500

Barrie Bates 6-2 Mark Walsh
Steve Maish 6-5 Mark Dudbridge
James Wade 6-3 Tony Eccles
Denis Ovens 6-5 Vincent van der Voort
Losers £1,000

Barrie Bates 6-4 Steve Maish
Denis Ovens 6-5 James Wade
Losers £1,500

Barrie Bates 6-5 Denis Ovens
Winner £6,000
Runner-Up £3,000


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