Wade battles into final
Rollercoaster semi-final on the Winter Gardens stage
Last Updated: 29/07/12 12:15am
James Wade: in the final for the fifth time in seven years
James Wade battled into the Betfair World Matchplay final for the fifth time in seven years after snatching a thrilling 17-15 victory over Terry Jenkins in Blackpool.
Jenkins, conquerer of world champion Adrian Lewis in the last eight, got off to a bright start as he punished several missed doubles from Wade to open up a 4-1 lead.
But the left-hander started to back up his high scoring with better finishing as he won eight of the next 10 legs, nailing a superb 164 checkout as well as further finishes of 103, 127 and 107.
However, Jenkins roared back to take the next five legs before Wade responded with his fifth ton-plus checkout, finishing 130 on double five.
Wade levelled at 11-11 and thrilled the Winter Gardens crowd again with a 144 checkout before a topsy-turvy encounter took another twist when Jenkins took out 98 to level at 13-13.
Wade pulled two legs clear again only for Jenkins to take the next two , but The Bull missed six darts at a double in a pivotal 31st leg and Wade stepped in to snatch the leg on double top.
And the 2007 champion opened the next with a 180 and held his nerve to seal a hard-fought victory on double six to earn a clash with Phil Taylor in Sunday's final.