Wright hits nine-darter in defeat to Gurney on Night 11

Peter Wright (Lawrence Lustig, PDC)

Peter Wright hit a nine-darter in an 8-6 loss to Daryl Gurney on Saturday in Milton Keynes, while Michael van Gerwen suffered a third defeat in four matches on Unibet Premier League Night 11.

A bitter-sweet night for Wright saw him land his first televised perfect leg, having missed double 12 to achieve the feat against Gurney on Thursday's Judgement Night.

However, the World Champion was unable to cap the achievement with two league points as a determined Gurney dug in to keep his Play-Off hopes alive.

Unibet Premier League Results

"It's another achievement for me and it's pretty special," said Wright. "I missed the double 12 the other day by miles but this time I hit it, and I'm proud.

"I'm gutted about the result but I missed too many doubles in the last two legs and Daryl was outstanding. It was a really good match."

Peter Wright
Wright missed double 12 for a nine-darter against Gurney on Judgement Night

It was the third time Gurney found himself on the wrong end of a nine-dart leg on TV this year, but the Northern Irishman showed composure to fend off a Wright comeback.

Gurney flew out of the blocks with checkouts of 164 and 96 on his way to a 4-0 lead, only for Wright took four of the next five legs to make it 5-4.

A 141 finish doubled Gurney's advantage before Wright nailed the same checkout to end his perfect leg, before holding throw in the next to make it 6-6.

However, that was as good as it got for the world number two as Gurney punished a trio of missed doubles from Wright across the last two legs to end his two-match losing run.

"It's a very important win for me," said Gurney. "It's always amazing to see a nine-dart leg - but not when it's a tight game!

"It was a great moment and fair play to Peter, but thankfully I got the win at the end.

"I'm practising really well and for some reason I'm not taking my A-game onto stage just now, but I'm practising hard and trying my best."

An unpredictable night at the Marshall Arena saw the remaining eight players battling it out for vital points in the race to make the Play-Offs which will see the top four play for the title at The O2.

Michael van Gerwen
Never before has Van Gerwen lost five league phase matches

Five-time champion Van Gerwen faces a battle to reach the semi-finals for the first time in his career after he went down 8-4 to Gerwyn Price to slip to fifth in the table.

Despite averaging over three points more than his Welsh opponent, Van Gerwen missed 13 attempts at double as the world number one suffered a fifth defeat of the season for the first time in a Premier League campaign.

By contrast, clinical finishing from Price saw him miss just four attempts at the outer ring, with the two-time Grand Slam champion still in the hunt for a maiden Play-Off appearance.

"I couldn't be happier to pick up two points against Michael," said Price. "I flew out of the blocks and I felt like I couldn't miss early on but I slipped up a bit once I got to six and seven legs.

"Michael is a champion and he battled on, and I needed to take out that 92 at the end. Getting that final leg is always the hardest thing, and luckily that went in.

"I've only ever beaten him once before and you still think that the game isn't over, even at 7-3, but thankfully I got over the line because it's never easy against Michael.

"It's a big game tomorrow against Peter and I need to get a result because it's such a tough league."

Nathan Aspinall, Michael Smith
Aspinall narrowly got the better of Smith for the second time in three days

Premier League debutants Glen Durrant and Nathan Aspinall now occupy the top two positions after Aspinall edged out Michael Smith 8-6.

For the second time in three days, Aspinall found himself on the right end of a narrow scoreline against former Premier League runner-up Smith, who slips down to seventh.

Another see-saw affair between two of the sport's biggest young stars began uncharacteristic errors from both players, with neither able to pull away.

Aspinall ended the contest with 25 missed double attempts, but Smith was unable to find his usual scoring power to get himself into positions to punish the former UK Open champion.

At 6-6 Smith missed two darts at double to ensure at least a point and Aspinall took full advantage, pinning double 16 before hitting a 94 checkout to secure a vital victory.

"They're always exciting games with Michael but he's been missing doubles against me recently and it's down to me to take advantage, which I did tonight," said Aspinall.

"I've dug deep and I'm delighted because it was so important for me to bounce back from last night and I played some brilliant darts at times. I've still got to improve my doubles though.

"It's so close in the table and that's a testament to the eight players involved. I was third before last night, I dropped to sixth and then with this win I've gone up to second at the moment - it's crazy."

Glen Durrant
Durrant's unbeaten run looked like it was coming to an end when he trailed 7-3

Durrant extended his unbeaten run to seven matches, though he had to survive seven match darts from a wasteful Gary Anderson as the Scot failed to close out victory after earning at least a point at 7-3.

Anderson opened the contest with a 127 finish and defied checkouts of 138 and 117 from Durrant to pull clear, only for the league leader to punish his missed doubles in two of the final four legs to snatch a draw.

"It's my biggest point of the week because the better player ended up not winning this match," said Durrant. "I was resigned to losing at 7-3 and I dodged a bullet tonight.

"That was pure luck and some days you need that. Gary was much better than me - I was missing doubles and Gary took over.

"It could be a massive point for me. I'm very proud to be top of this league because it's tremendous."

Sunday sees the first six of ten days' action behind closed doors in Milton Keynes come to a close before a two-day break, with the four matches including Price and Wright meeting in a repeat of the 2019 Grand Slam of Darts final.

Second-placed Aspinall opens the night against Anderson, Van Gerwen takes on Smith in a repeat of the 2018 Premier League final and Durrant will face Gurney.

Live coverage of Unibet Premier League Night 12 will be shown on Sky Sports, as well as through the PDC's international broadcast partners including RTL7 and DAZN and for PDCTV Rest of the World Subscribers.

Unibet Premier League
Night 11
Saturday August 29
Marshall Arena, Milton Keynes
Daryl Gurney 8-6 Peter Wright
Nathan Aspinall 8-6 Michael Smith
Gary Anderson 7-7 Glen Durrant
Gerwyn Price 8-4 Michael van Gerwen

Night 12
Sunday August 30 (1900 BST)

Marshall Arena, Milton Keynes - behind closed doors
Nathan Aspinall v Gary Anderson
Peter Wright v Gerwyn Price
Michael van Gerwen v Michael Smith
Glen Durrant v Daryl Gurney

Premier League table