Darts superstar Rob Cross began his 2019 Unibet Premier League campaign with a draw tonight (Thursday).
The world number two from St Leonards drew 6-6 with third-ranked Peter Wright in a high quality contest at the Utilita Arena in Newcastle.
Cross averaged 103.57 in an impressive display, but despite winning three of the first four legs, he needed to clinch the last to avoid defeat.
* Rob Cross wins Brisbane Darts Masters
The former world champion broke throw in 15 darts at the start of the match before an excellent 10-dart hold featuring a 177 put him 2-0 up.
Cross missed a dart at double top to lead 3-0 and Wright finished 87 in two darts to open his account. A 13-dart hold gave Cross a 3-1 lead and at that stage he was averaging 111.
Upping his game dramatically after a slow start, Wright pinned 100 in two darts to make it 3-2. Both men landed 180s in leg six, but Wright broke in 11 darts to level at 3-3.
Wright checked out 88 on the bull to lead for the first time at 4-3 and then started leg eight with a 180 only for Cross to eventually hold for 4-4.
Cross hit his second 180 in leg nine, but Wright held throw in 15 darts to lead 5-4. Cross replied with a 15-darter of his own in the next leg to level the scores again only for Wright to produce another 15-darter for a 6-5 lead.
Although Wright hit his third 180 in the final leg, Cross responded with a 177. Wright missed a dart at double 18 for a 116 outshot and Cross hit double 16 for a 14-darter to save the match.
The Unibet Premier League is a 17-night roadshow competition featuring a select field of the sport’s top players. Night two will take place at The SSE Hydro in Glasgow next Thursday when Cross will face European Championship and World Series of Darts Finals winner James Wade.