World Champion van Gerwen won a thriller on Saturday night, edging out ‘Barney’ in a last-leg decider of the highest quality.
The world number one, who had to win the last three legs to grab victory, sealed the triumph with an exceptional 12-darter after leaving a double after nine darts in the decider.
van Barneveld had put himself in a strong position to exact revenge for last week’s European Championship semi-final defeat at the hands of van Gerwen when he took a 5-2 lead.
But ‘Mighty Mike’, who went on to win that tournament, hit two double twenties to complete a 100 checkout to break ‘Barney’.
He then pegged double 12 to move within a leg of his opponent, whose fifth 180 helped him restore his advantage.
van Gerwen won the next two legs to restore parity at six apiece before a run of four consecutive legs won against the throw put Barney a leg in front after 15.
The five-time World Champion then took out 52 to move within a leg of victory but van Gerwen pinned double five and then broke van Barneveld’s throw to force a last-leg decider.
Both players produced special darts under intense pressure, with ‘Barney’ opening with a 180 before van Gerwen returned the compliment.
The 25-year-old left double eight after nine-darts and bedded it at the third attempt with van Barneveld waiting on 42.
van Gerwen will take on Dave Chisnall in the last eight on Sunday, when the tournament reaches its conclusion.