Steve Beaton, Keegan Brown, Ross Smith and Maik Langendorf left Barnsley Metrodome on Friday evening delighted as they sealed qualification for the 2018 PDC World Series of Darts Finals in Vienna.
The German-based Austrian Langendorf was most certainly the surprise package of the qualifier in Barnsley as he produced some solid stuff to battle his way through a tough field. Langendorf kicked off the qualifying event with a closely contested 6-5 victory over former WC finalist Kirk Shepherd as he settled into the event. He then came up against an experienced Wayne Jones, in which was another close battle, and again Langendorf prevailed in a last-leg decider. In the final two games to qualify, Langendorf faced both Huybrechts brother Ronny and Kim. A 6-3 success over Ronny was followed by an assuring 6-1 victory over Kim Huybrechts to seal qualification.
As for Steve Beaton, he produced some phenomenal displays in sealing his place in Vienna. The ‘Bronzed Adonis’ produced an average of 103.2 in his 6-1 victory over Aden Kirk in his opening match, he then went on to average in the high 90’s for the remainder of the event. A 6-4 victory over Brendan Dolan was followed up by an impressive 6-2 win over Steve West before completing a 6-4 win over Devon’s Ryan Searle to seal qualification, it’s worth mentioning that Searle averaged 107.4 earlier in the event in his victory over Darren Webster in the last 16.
Keegan Brown enjoyed a nice return to form as the Isle of Wight-based star confirmed his place in the World Series of Darts Finals. Brown was mightily impressive throughout the course of the evening, and a place in Vienna was never in doubt given the darts that he produced. Brown saw off Paul Rowley 6-3, Luke Woodhouse 6-3, Dirk van Duijvenbode 6-2, before a phenomenal display against Stephen Bunting as Brown recorded an average of 115.8 in a 6-3 win over the former Lakeside World Champion who averaged a shade under 105 himself. To seal qualification, Brown saw off Ron Meulenkamp in a thumping 6-0 victory.
Ross Smith sealed his place in a televised event for the first time in years as he produced some terrific darts in Barnsley. Smith really had to dig in at times in the event as he came through four last-leg decider which must’ve took a lot of mental strength to overcome. Smith saw off the likes of Kevin Burness 6-1, Jeffrey de Graaf 6-5, Robert Thornton 6-5, Tony Newell 6-5 before coming through yet another 11-leg thriller to edge past Darren Johnson to confirm his place in Vienna.