Adrian Lewis still thinks he can win Premier League title

Lewis still in with title hopes after dispatching Van Barneveld in style

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UPDATED:

22:12 GMT, 29 March 2012

Adrian Lewis is adamant he can still win the Premier League after thrashing Raymond van Barneveld 8-2 in Cardiff on Thursday.

The world champion, who had to play twice in the absence of Gary Anderson for family reasons, responded to an 8-4 defeat against Andy Hamilton in the opening match of the evening by cruising past the Dutchman.

And Jackpot warned the rest of the competition he has all the firepower he needs to add the Premier League trophy to his cabinet.

Hopeful: Adrian Lewis believes he can win the title

Hopeful: Adrian Lewis believes he can win the title

He said: 'Raymond was in second place until tonight so if I beat him 8-2 why can’t I win it I’ve won two world titles and the World Cup!

'I know how good Raymond is but I went up there believing I was going to beat him.'

Things started well for Lewis as he hit double five to take the opening leg against Hamilton. The Hammer came roaring back though, to take the next five legs thanks to Jackpot’s inability to finish.

And then Lewis inexplicably missed three darts at double 18 which would have moved him within two legs at 6-4. Hamilton accepted the gift and checked out 106 to extend his lead to 7-3.

Then The Hammer sealed victory in the next leg with double 10 to record his first win since the opening week of the competition.

Having hit just four out of 19 doubles against Hamilton, Lewis was a different player against the Dutchman and 160 and 90 checkouts helped him to an early 3-0 lead.

And despite Barney clawing back the next two legs, Lewis remained unperturbed as he reeled off five straight legs to win 8-2.

Easy: Raymond van Barneveld was comfortably dispatched

Easy: Raymond van Barneveld was comfortably dispatched

Lewis’ former mentor Phil Taylor also romped to an 8-2 victory at the expense of Kevin Painter, as he moved seven points clear.

The Power started in ominous fashion, winning the opening leg against the throw en route to a 4-0 lead. But Painter wasn’t about to roll over and, after registering his first leg of the contest, The Artist checked out 70 on the Taylor throw to reduce his arrears to 4-2 at the break.

But normal service was resumed for Taylor as he checked out 76 and 81 on Painter’s throw to take a 7-2 lead. And despite two near misses at a nine-dart finish, Taylor secured another victory with a 113.30 average.

'Kevin pushes you and he never gives in,' said Taylor. 'He tries every dart and that is the sign of a true professional.

'It is like a 100metre race you have to get ahead and win. It doesn’t matter how you win, as long as you get the two points.'

Hot: Phil Taylor was also in good form

Hot: Phil Taylor was also in good form

Elsewhere, James Wade thumped Simon Whitlock 8-0 to move into second place and keep the pressure up on Taylor.

Wade was in brilliant form, rushing to a 6-0 interval lead against an out of sorts Wizard. And there was no let up from The Machine when the players returned as he went close to a nine-dart finish in the seventh leg.

The whitewash was complete in the next leg when Wade checked out 90 against the throw to secure two points.

After the win, Wade said: 'I think certain critics tend to write certain players off and they do it all the time. They make a living out of that and normally they are wrong which is good.'