Who wants to stop this man? Michael van Gerwen once again impressively underlined his title ambitions at the Darts World Championship in London. The top favorite overran Chris Dobey, who had previously knocked out two world champions, Gary Anderson and Rob Cross, at Alexandra Palace, 5-0.

“That’s how you have to play if you want to win matches,” said the Dutchman succinctly afterwards. The 33-year-old gave his unfortunate opponent just three of his 18 legs to finish averaging 102.39 points per shot. 15 of 39 attempts on the double fields landed in the target. “I feel good. It was a nice performance. You want it to be as nice and smooth as possible for you,” said van Gerwen, but also made it clear that he hadn’t achieved anything with his fourth win at the World Cup: “The semi-finals suck.”

He has made it this far for the eighth time in his career. He made it to the final six times, but only won it in three years, in 2014, 2017 and 2019. Too little for his own claims. Nothing other than title number four, equivalent to a return to the top of the world rankings, is the declared goal.

The next opponent is Belgian Dimitri van den Bergh, who tried to get the crowd on his side right after his win against Jonny Clayton in the afternoon: “I’m a dreammaker and I have a dream. Let’s do it together folks. Two more games,” he said at the microphone in the direction of the audience.

Van Gerwen’s answer followed in the evening: “He will definitely not be so confident tomorrow. People should understand one thing: to be back here on this stage and in the semifinals feels phenomenal. It doesn’t matter who I play against, Chris Dobey, Dimitri or whoever comes, I play my game and win round after round.

Jonny Clayton (WAL/7) – Dimitri van den Bergh (BEL/15) 3:5 (3:0; 0:3; :3)

Michael Smith (ENG/4) – Stephen Bunting (ENG/21) 5:3 (3:2; 0:3; 3:1; 3:1; 3:0; 0:3; 1:3; 3:1)

Gerwyn Price (WAL/1) – Gabriel Clemens (D/25) 1:5 (3:0; 1:3; 1:3; 1:3; 1:3; 0:3)

Michael van Gerwen (ENG/3) – Chris Dobey (ENG/22) 5:0 (3:1; 3:1; 3:0; 3:0; 3:1)

from 8.45 p.m.:

Gabriel Clemens (D/25) – Michael Smith (ENG/4)

Michael van Gerwen (NED/3) – Dimitri van den Bergh (BEL/15)