UK Open darts: Rob Cross beaten in final by Nathan Aspinall

Rob Cross at the oche during the final of the Ladbrokes UK Open against Nathan Aspinall. Picture courtesy Lawrence Lustig/PDC
Rob Cross at the oche during the final of the Ladbrokes UK Open against Nathan Aspinall. Picture courtesy Lawrence Lustig/PDC

Darts superstar Rob Cross reached the final of the Ladbrokes UK Open at the Butlin’s Minehead Resort.

The world number two from St Leonards won five matches over three days before losing 11-5 to Nathan Aspinall in the final tonight (Sunday).

Speaking on stage after the final, Cross said: “In fairness Nathan played well. I have to admit I’ve got nothing left. There was nothing there. I went up here, I played the game and to be honest I would’ve loved to give it my all, but there was nothing there, there really wasn’t.”

See also: * Premier League Darts: Rob Cross thrashes Daryl Gurney
* St Leonards ace wins Brisbane title
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Cross hit eight 180s to Aspinall’s two in the final, but his overall performance was well below the high standards he has set so far in 2019.

The former world champion made a flying start, producing a 12-darter in the opening leg and beginning the second with a 180, but Aspinall clinched that leg and went on to claim the first break of throw to lead 3-2.

World Championship semi-finalist Aspinall opened up a 5-2 advantage after winning four straight legs, but missed four darts at a double to lead 6-2 and Cross closed to 5-4. Cross looked set to level at 5-5 only to spurn six darts at a double and Aspinall pounced to lead 6-4 at the second break.

Cross produced back-to-back 180s en route to a 12-darter in the 11th leg only to lose the five remaining legs. Aspinall, who is expected to rise from 34th in the rankings into the top 16, sealed his victory in style with a magnificent 170 checkout.

The 28-year-old Cross beat Darren Webster 10-4 in round four on Friday night, Mervyn King - conqueror of world number one Michael van Gerwen - 10-5 in round five yesterday afternoon and Cristo Reyes 10-6 in round six yesterday night.

Voltage, as Cross is nicknamed, overcame Josh Payne 10-7 in the quarter-finals this afternoon and World Championship runner-up Michael Smith 11-7 in the semi-finals earlier this evening.