Rob Cross Storms To Victory & Wins 2024 Baltic Sea Darts Open, Defying A 9 Dart Finish In Final From Luke Humphries

Published on 12 May 2024 at 22:31

Rob Cross picked up the second PDC Euro Tour title of his career this weekend, as he won the 2024 Baltic Sea Darts Open in style, defying a nine darter from the World Champion Luke Humphries to win 8-6 in Sunday night's final.


Following on from his victory in the 2023 European Darts Grand Prix, Cross has enjoyed some excellent performances on the European Tour circuit this year, pushing the likes of Luke Littler and Gary Anderson to the absolute limit, but just falling short when it came to winning the entire event. 


However this time in Kiel, Germany, the former World Champion was not going to be denied once again. Entering the tournament as the no.4 seed, Cross dispatched of Dutchman Maik Kuivenhoven in his opening game with a 102.59 average to book his place on Finals Day.


There, he first met the reigning Masters Champion Stephen Bunting. Cross won the throw, which proved to be pivotal as every single leg in the 11 leg clash went with the darts as Cross emerged a 6-5 winner in a tense affair to knock out The Bullet. 


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In Sunday's quarter-final, Cross was once again taken to a last leg decider. This time against Richie Edhouse, who previously eliminated Cross at the International Darts Open last month. But Cross was not to be denied by 'Madhouse' once again, ending Edhouse's fine run of form to return to the semi-final stage on the Euro Tour.


Awaiting in the semi-final was the tournament's surprise package in Latvian No.1 Madars Razma, who had taken the scalps of Chris Dobey, Dave Chisnall and Joe Cullen along the way. Though Cross was just too much for Razma to overcome, as he raced into an early lead and didn't look back, prevailing 7-4 to set up yet another tour final against Luke Humphries. 


With each man sharing wins over one another on the big stage, Sunday's final truly could have gone either way. Both averaging well above 100 and trading breaks of throw, it was Humphries who dealt the first major blow of the contest with the biggest feat of them all: a 9 dart finish, the second one that Cross has faced on this year's European Tour after Luke Littler also took one out in the final of ET1.


Before Humphries could race away with his 5-3 lead however, Cross became even more clinical, turning the tide of the match on its head and soon leading 7-6 with the darts to win the match. 


And it was with Double 10 that Cross finally got one over on the reigning World Champion, ending a recent string of defeats over the World No.1 and scooping the second European Tour title of his career in style with a superb 105.56 average compared to Humphries' equally impressive 104.38.


By Jaspar Shepherdson

(@jasparshepmedia on X/Twitter and Instagram)


Image Credit-Sven Mandel on Wikipedia

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