LONDON -- Raymond van Barneveld reached the semifinals of the PDC World Championship after a 5-3 win over old rival Phil Taylor at Alexandra Palace.
The 77th meeting between the pair was not a classic in terms of big checkouts or consistent scoring, but it was not short on drama.
Van Barneveld, who famously defeated Taylor in the 2007 final, got off to an ideal start by taking the opening set 3-1 but Taylor soon responded to level the match.
The 16-time world champion then led 2-0 in the third set before his opponent mounted a superb rally to take the next three legs to go 2-1 up overall.
Van Barneveld then followed up a stunning 167 checkout with a brilliant 120 finish to snatch the next 3-2 and open up a two-set lead, but Taylor responded to take the fifth 3-0 before levelling up the match in the sixth set.
There were nerves from both players in the seventh set but Van Barneveld took it 3-0, while the eighth set went the distance before the Dutchman finished the match off in style. His bullseye set up a semi-final showdown on Sunday with compatriot Michael van Gerwen, who powered past Northern Ireland's Daryl Gurney 5-1.
Van Gerwen, the 2014 world champion, won the first set 3-0 by averaging 125.3, but Gurney, in his maiden quarter-final appearance, fought back to take the second set.
A 170 checkout gave Van Gerwen the third set and while 24th seed Gurney remained competitive, the Dutchman ultimately eased to a comfortable victory.
Earlier in the day, Gary Anderson's title defence came under a stern examination in a thrilling contest with Dave Chisnall.
Anderson is chasing a third successive crown at Alexandra Palace but was tested in a 5-3 win as the pair threw 33 maximums between them - one short of the record in the history of televised games.
Chisnall was in a great position to go 4-3 up but he crucially missed four doubles and Anderson stole the set. He then ran away with the final set to tee up a last-four date with Peter Wright.
Wright edged out James Wade 5-3 in the afternoon's other quarterfinal.
It was another keenly-contested game as Wright was one arrow away from landing the first nine-darter of the tournament while Wade won one set with checkouts of 144 and 155. Wright assumed control with back-to-back sets and he saw it out.