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Wizard knocked out in world darts semis

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Australian Simon Whitlock’s wait for an elusive world darts title goes on after he suffered a heavy upset defeat to Scot Peter Wright in the world championships semi-finals.

The Wizard admitted to having his “biggest chance ever” to secure a world title after 16-times world champion Phil Taylor’s shock second-round exit opened up his side of the draw.

But the fourth-seeded Australian failed to capitalise as he was easily accounted for 6-2 by 16th seed Wright in Monday’s last-four encounter at London’s Alexandra Palace.

Wright will meet either second-seeded Dutchman Michael van Gerwen or third seed Adrian Lewis in Wednesday night’s final.

Whitlock, 44, was bidding to reach his third world final since turning pro in 2002, having finished runner up in 2008 and 2010.

The former Cessnock bricklayer had survived a huge scare to reach the semi-finals, prevailing 5-4 over Scot Ian White in a tense quarter-final after squandering a 4-1 lead.

But he was out-of-sorts and always on the back foot on Monday with Wright, sporting his trademark multi-colour mohawk and goatee, continuing his stellar form in the tournament to race to a 3-0 lead.

The Australian secured a break to get on the board with the fourth set but Wright hit straight back.

A fired-up Whitlock let out a scream of “never say die” after clawing back to 5-2 but Wright showed composure in his first world semi-final appearance to close it out and deny his opponent a chance to became Australia’s first darts world champion since Tony David in 2002.

Van Gerwen and Lewis were contesting Monday’s second semi-final.

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