There was a bit of rust – Luke Littler comes good to win Poland Darts Masters

Luke Littler claimed his second World Series title as he powered his way past compatriot Rob Cross to win the Poland Darts Masters.

The 17-year-old top seed triumphed 8-3 at the PreZero Arena in Gliwice with a three-dart average of 101.84 to cap a fine day’s work in difficult circumstances as Peter Wright and Michael Smith made him dig deep to reach the final.

Speaking on stage in front of a crowd of 9,000 afterwards, Littler said: “I’ve just had a week off in Orlando and there was a bit of rust, but I think this weekend I’ve played well.

“I want to win as much as I can and this year, the first half of the period, it’s been really good, picking up six titles, hitting numerous nine-darters, and I can’t wait for the second half of the season to kick in.”

Littler started the final in ominous fashion and hit a 164 checkout to take a 4-1 lead and lay a foundation which proved decisive.

He had earlier survived a tense semi-final with Smith, who led 4-1 and narrowly missed the bull going for a 124 finish and then two match darts at double eight in the deciding leg before Littler found double five to prevail 7-6.

It proved something of a battle throughout with Littler having earlier taken out treble 19, double top, double top for 137 to level at 5-5.

Cross turned in a hugely impressive semi-final display as he routed Michael van Gerwen 7-2 with an average of 106.68 to reach his third World Series final in as many weeks.

Littler eased past former world champion Wright 6-3 in the quarter-finals, where Smith had edged out Luke Humphries 6-5.

Van Gerwen’s progress to the last four was serene as he whitewashed Croatian number one Boris Krcmar 6-0, while Cross beat Stephen Bunting – who checked out on 164 in the third leg – 6-4 in a tighter contest.