Pieman wins in Holland 12 momths after last title success
Andy Smith celebrated his first Players Championship success in a year after beating Alan Tabern in the final of Sunday's event at the Van Der Valk Hotel in Haarlem.
Smith, who had been victorious on the corresponding weekend last year, in Dinslaken, Germany, repeated his success to take the £6,000 title in Holland.
The world number 29 dropped only five legs in his opening three games, against Par Riihonen, Dennis Smith and Kevin Dowling, before whitewashing Steve Maish to reach the quarter-finals.
There, he defeated Kevin Painter 6-3 and came from 5-3 down to win in a deciding leg in the semi-finals against Steve Brown.
After securing an immediate break of throw in the final by winning the first leg, he hit a 180 in doubling his lead before Tabern got off the mark.
Tabern hit a maximum of his own in the fourth leg, but a missed bullseye allowed Smith in to take out 64 in two darts on double top.
Tabern enjoyed his best leg of the match with a 174 score and a 116 finish in pulling back to 3-2, while Smith shared the next two to remain ahead and claim the title.
Tabern's run saw him reach his first final since May 2009, and gives him hope of retaining a top 16 place for the StanJames.com World Matchplay next month.
After taking wins over Germany's Jyhan Artut and Holland's Mareno Michels, he defeated Denis Ovens, Simon Whitlock and Vincent van der Voort to reach the semis.
Leamington Spa's Nigel Heydon also won through to the last eight, overcoming Steve Beaton, Arron Monk and Andy Hamilton in reaching his third PDC quarter-final.
Saturday's champion Vincent van der Voort also reached the quarter-finals, losing to Tabern but taking his prize money for the weekend to £7,000.
Germany's Bernd Roith made a late push for a European Championship qualifying place with his run to the last 16, which included a defeat of Paul Nicholson, while Ian White also reached that stage for the first time on the PDC ProTour.
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