Springer Stuns Veteran Welge

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NIKO Springer produced a sensational fightback to edge out Andree Welge and move through to the 2023 Hylo PDC Europe Super League quarter-finals on Thursday.

Following two days of round-robin action, the knockout stage got underway in Bitburg on Thursday, as Springer recovered from a sluggish start to preserve his hopes of World Darts Championship qualification.

Springer – a runner-up to Florian Hempel last year – had stoln the headlines with a spectacular nine-darter on Tuesday’s opening day, and he continued his heroics to triumph in an epic last 16 clash against Welge.

Five-time World Championship qualifier Welge raced into an early 3-0 lead, aided by a sublime 140 checkout, only for Springer to open his account with a clinical 110 kill in leg four.

The 23-year-old then followed up a 107 combination in leg seven with a terrific 140 outshot to restore parity at four apiece, before the pair traded holds of throw to set up a thrilling finale.

Springer had the advantage of throw in the decider, and with Welge poised on a two-darter for victory, the young star completed the comeback with a brilliant 112 finish – his fourth ton-plus checkout of the contest.

Springer’s reward is a last eight showdown against Kai Gotthardt, who dumped out former German number one Max Hopp after winning five of the last six legs to close out a 6-3 victory.

The performance of the day belonged to rising star Pascal Rupprecht, who reeled off five consecutive legs to record a comprehensive 6-1 rout of Arno Merk.

Rupprecht, who secured his PDC Tour Card in January, landed 105 and 107 checkouts in consecutive legs to triumph with a 97 average, which sets up a fascinating showdown against Daniel Klose.

Klose – a Players Championship 21 runner-up in September – overcame Rene Eidams in a gruelling tussle, following up a crucial 68 finish with a 16-darter to celebrate a 6-4 success.

Lukas Wenig won ten consecutive round-robin matches to finish top of Group A, and he extended his winning run to 11 games in Bitburg, courtesy of a hard-fought 6-4 win against Manfred Bilderl.

Trailing 3-1, Wenig won five of the next six legs to book a quarter-final tie against Dominik Grullich, who fired in three 180s to overcome Liam Maendl-Lawrance by the same 6-4 scoreline.

Elsewhere, 2020 champion Nico Kurz continued his bid for a second PDC Europe Super League title with a deciding-leg victory against Paul Krohne, who rallied from 5-2 down to force a last-leg shoot-out.

Kurz will now take on Dragutin Horvat, who ran out a 6-3 winner against Michael Klonhammer to maintain his hopes of an Alexandra Palace return, seven years after making his debut in the sport’s flagship event.

The quarter-finals, semi-finals and final will take place on a bumper Finals Day on Friday November 10, which will be broadcast live on SPORT1.

Coverage with English commentary will also be available on PDCTV, with the winner of the PDC Europe Super League assured of a place in the 2023/24 Paddy Power World Darts Championship.

2023 Hylo PDC Europe Super League
Thursday November 9, Bitburg, Germany
Last 16

Lukas Wenig 6-4 Manfred Bilderl
Dominik Grullich 6-4 Liam Maendl-Lawrance 
Nico Kurz 6-5 Paul Krohne
Dragutin Horvat 6-3 Michael Klönhammer
Pascal Rupprecht 6-1 Arno Merk
Daniel Klose 6-4 Rene Eidams
Kai Gotthardt 6-3 Max Hopp
Niko Springer 6-5 Andree Welge

Friday November 10

Lukas Wenig v Dominik Grullich
Nico Kurz v Dragutin Horvat
Pascal Rupprecht v Daniel Klose
Kai Gotthardt v Niko Springer
Best of 11 legs

Wenig/Grullich v Kurz/Horvat
Rupprecht/Klose v Gotthardt/Springer
Best of 13 legs

Best of 15 legs


Images: PDC

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