ROBERT THORNTON 10 – 8 Mervyn King

Robert Thornton won through to the quarter-finals of the Grand Slam in sensational style, firing in a magnificent 161 checkout in the final leg to see off the challenge of Mervyn King on Wednesday.

Thornton grabbed his fourth victory of the Wolverhampton tournament in an exciting encounter with King, who led 6-4 at one stage, to set up a last eight meeting with Tony O’Shea.

The Scotsman started spectacularly, opening with a 180 before taking out 132 – using two bullesyes and double 16 – to win the first leg.

King levelled but another 180 helped Thornton hold his throw again and finishes of 80 and 92 gave the former UK Open winner a 4-1 lead.

His opponent stormed back however, winning five consecutive legs before ‘The Thorn’ stopped the rot by taking out 64 on tops.

He then levelled the match at six legs apiece with the aid of his third maximum and landed tops again to move in front.

The next three legs went with the throw to leave the match finely poised at eight all.

Thornton moved within a leg of victory by bedding tops again and went on to seal the win with an incredible 161 combination when his opponent was waiting on 64.

The Scotsman will face O’Shea on Friday as he bid to reach his first Grand Slam semi-final.

By Chris Murphy