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Last Updated: Friday, 13 January 2006, 19:41 GMT
Van Barneveld reaches semi-finals
Raymond van Barneveld
Defending champion Raymond van Barneveld reached the last four of the Lakeside World Championship with a 5-3 win over England's Tony O'Shea.

The Dutchman had looked strong early on, building up a 3-1 lead by the interval as O'Shea missed some doubles.

O'Shea briefly rallied after the break, but Barneveld took control once again to run out the winner.

He will face Martin Adams in the semi-finals after the Englishman beat Mike Veitch 5-2.

The second seed lost the first two sets but staged a superb comeback to reel off the next five in a row to reach the last four and set up a re-run of last year's final.

But once Adams found his range, there was no stopping him with his greater consistency in finding the high scores and doubles shining through.

"I was lucky to get it back to 2-2 because I had been playing awfully and was spraying my darts everywhere," said the 49-year-old from Peterborough.

I'm expecting a hard match against Raymond and it will probably be close
Martin Adams

"For some reason my hands felt very sticky and I couldn't get them dry, but I'm very pleased with the way I clawed my way back into it. It was one of those games where you had to keep working at it.

"Now I'm expecting a hard match against Raymond and it will probably be close. I owe him one and the intention is to smack his bottom!"

O'Shea, a former golf club greenkeeper, was always left chasing the game after his Dutch opponent's blistering start.

Each time he got to within one set of van Barneveld, the defending champion held his throw to remain the favourite to retain his title on Sunday.

But the Dutchman, who has been suffering from an irritation in his eye, was still not happy with his performance.

"I got very lucky in the second set in which I was 2-0 down but won it 3-2 and it was the same in the fourth set," said the third seed. "Tony missed a lot of doubles, which was lucky for me.

I wish I could have hit the doubles more often
Tony O'Shea

"My average of 31 per dart is not me. I'm in good form so I should be getting 33.5.

"I couldn't believe how many times I was scoring 57, 59, 60 and I started thinking 'what am I doing'. I almost thought I should shake Tony's hand and let him go through."

O'Shea admitted his finishing had let him down.

"I wish I could have hit the doubles more often," said the 44-year-old from Stockport. "But I'm not disappointed because I've lost to a legend of the game.

"Neither of us was at our best but it was still a good game. I've really enjoyed this week and I'll be back and playing better."


WATCH AND LISTEN
World Darts highlights: Barneveld 5-3 O'Shea


Interview: Defending champion Raymond van Barneveld


Interview: Tony O'Shea



SEE ALSO
Lakeside draws
12 Dec 05 |  Darts
Darts results
12 Oct 00 |  Darts


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