A far-from-vintage Rob Cross is hoping to improve after reaching PDC Home Tour semi-finals.

Rob Cross joined fellow top seeds Gary Anderson and Dave Chisnall in next week’s semi-final phase of the PDC Home Tour but ‘Voltage’ was not as flash in victory as his fellow heavyweights before him.

With Ryan Searle, Luke Woodhouse and Daniel Larsson in opposition, Cross was unlikely to have things all his own way and so it proved. The world number four managed to progress but only averaged 83.17 across his three matches.

The former PDC world champion was a 6-3 winner over Larsson in the opening match of the evening but can thank some efficient doubling – six from nine (67 per cent) – after posting a lower three-dart average than his Swedish opponent.

Maximum machine Searle was expected to capitalise if Cross failed to fire and he got off to a winning start with a 6-4 victory over Woodhouse, averaging just shy of 99 with a highest checkout of 146.

Larsson soon made amends for his defeat against Cross, taking advantage of a below-par performance from Woodhouse to win in a final-leg decider. The world number 130 was victorious despite being only six from 23 on the doubles.

Cross and Searle then locked horns in a meeting which would determine group honours where, despite hitting four 180s, ‘Heavy Metal’ couldn’t land the upset as Cross ran out a 6-4 victor.

As a result, Searle required an emphatic win over Larsson in his closing contest to boost his leg difference and give himself any shot of qualification. He won, but only 6-4, leaving Cross needing just three legs against Woodhouse to take the spoils.

It was a limp display from Cross, who averaged a mediocre 70, but a 6-5 scoreline in favour of Woodhouse saw him prevail.

That result meant that each player won at least one of their three matches on the night, although it was far from vintage from Woodhouse, who had previously hit a nine-dart finish as he whitewashed Gerwyn Price in qualifying for the Play-Offs.

Speaking afterwards, Cross, who is now 7/2 with Betfred to win the PDC Home Tour, hinted there should be more to come.

The world number four said: “It’s a probably weird scenario as I’m practising a lot better than I’m playing at the minute.”

Next up on Sunday sees Chris Dobey, 6/5 favourite to win Group 6, taken on by Joe Cullen, who is 7/4 next best. Martijn Kleermaker and Jeff Smith are also involved and can be backed at 6/1.

The meeting that could well be the one that decides the group is match four, set to take place from 9pm, with Dobey the 4/6 favourite to see off 11/10 chance Cullen.

Whenever you bet on Darts, Betfred.

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