Aussie Anderson denies Stevenson Danish Euro spot
THE Mirror Man was denied a place in the Danish Darts Open when, after solid earlier round victories at the Barnsley Metrodome, he came up against an in-form Kyle Anderson who was virtually unplayable.
He first contested the UK qualifier for the Dutch Darts Masters and was drawn against Ross Smith, a player he had never met before.
Stevenson secured the opening leg in 14 and should have made it 2-0 but six missed game darts allowed his 30-year-old opponent to steal it in 25.
That setback did not seem to worry him as he edged in front again, finishing a 15-darter with a kill of 126 before back to back 180s from the Dover marksman enabled him to level in 12.
Smith then went in front for the first time when taking the next two in 15 and 17 but Simon reduced the deficit when taking the seventh leg in 14.
Both players then hit 15-darters but at 5-4 in Smith’s favour, he shot out in 20 to progress to the next round.
Richard North was Stevenson’s opponent in the opening qualifying round of the Danish Darts Open, a player he had played twice before and defeated on each occasion.
Stevenson began well and was 3-1 up in 15, 16 and 18 before North pulled one back with his second 18-darter.
The Mirror Man restored his two-leg advantage when taking the next in 18 and then made it 5-2 with another 15-darter.
Simon was denied victory in the next when North pulled off a win in 14, only for the Plymouth marksman to wrap up a comprehensive 6-3 success when taking the ninth leg in 15.
Andrew Gilding was Stevenson’s next opponent and although the 48-year-old from Bungay had slipped down the rankings in the last two years, Simon had two defeats from their previous two meetings.
The Plymouth thrower went 2-1 up in 16 and 20 and then took control of the match when hitting back to back 13-darters to lead 4-1.
Gilding pulled one back but two consecutive legs in 17 and 15 saw Stevenson win 6-3 and clinch a place in the board final where the prize was a place in the Danish Darts Open.
His opponent was Kyle Anderson who just hours before had qualified for the Dutch Masters and the Australian didn’t hang about.
He took the opening leg in 15, finished a 12-darter with a checkout of 136, before going 3-0 up in 11 and at this stage was commanding an average of 118.66.
Simon halted the onslaught temporarily when taking the fourth leg in 13, but another three on the bounce from Anderson in 14, 12 and a more sedate 18, gave him his second Euro qualification, winning with a 105.7 average with Simon on 96.1.
Despite the defeat, this was a solid performance from Stevenson on the day and he finished with a 90.53 average and hit nine maximums.
Today and tomorrow, The Mirror Man will be contesting Players Championships 15 and 16, hoping to get the luck of the draw in the early matches, in order to enhance his Players Championship Order of Merit ranking.
At the moment he is just 1,000 points off his target of a place in the top 64, a good run on both days would enhance that position.