Michael Van Gerwen booked his place in the quarter-finals of the UK Open with a 10-4 win over Luke Humphries, who had earlier edged out world champion Michael Smith at Minehead Butlin’s.
Dutchman Van Gerwen, victorious on night five of the Premier League in Exeter on Thursday, took out 170 as he opened up a 3-0 lead before ‘Cool Hand’ Humphries responded to go into the interval trailing 6-4.
Van Gerwen, a three-time UK Open champion, picked things up again to comfortably close out victory with a match average of 103.98, landing five maximums.
“There is still a long way to go. I’m only in the quarter-finals and I’m looking forward to my next game,” the Dutchman said on the PDC website.
“You just need to focus on your own performance and that’s all you can do.
“They are long days at the UK Open, but I like it, I’m up for it. I love what I do, I love playing on the big stage and that is what makes me happy.”
Veteran Richie Burnett pulled off an unexpected 10-8 win over world number two Peter Wright, who had fought back from 7-3 down to level.
“I’m a tough old cookie. I love this game,” said Welshman Burnett, who beat Wright on his way to winning the 1995 BDO World Darts Championship title at Lakeside in Frimley Green.
“I have underachieved in this tournament. I have underachieved in my career, so I’m making up for lost time here.”
On Stage Two, former world champion Rob Cross recorded a 10-7 win over Jeffrey de Zwaan, who had earlier ended the hopes of Welshman Gerwyn Price.
Dimitri Van den Bergh reached the last eight after holding off a fightback from Gary Anderson to win 10-8.
German Martin Schindler also qualified for the quarter-finals after edging out Jonny Clayton by the same scoreline.
Adam Gawlas reached the quarter-finals of a major PDC tournament for the first time after the 21-year-old Czech completed an impressive 10-3 win over William O’Connor, who had knocked out defending champion Danny Noppert during the afternoon session.
Nathan Aspinall, UK Open champion in 2019, took his place in the last eight with a 10-2 win over Joe Cullen on the main stage, while Andrew Gilding secured a 10-8 win over Brendan Dolan, who beat Masters Chris Dobey champion earlier in the day.
When the action resumes on Sunday afternoon, Van Gerwen will play Aspinall, Cross faces Gawlas and Gilding takes on Schindler.
Burnett meets Van den Bergh for a place in the last four, with the draw for the semi-finals taking place ahead of the concluding evening session.