St Helens darts ace Michael Smith still seeking first win after failing to hit a host of leg-winning doubles

Bully Boy toppled to a 6-2 defeat against Bradford’s Joe Cullen in front of an estimated 12,000 crowd at the AO Arena, Manchester.

<p>Michael ‘Bully Boy’ Smith of England walks out before he competes against Michael ‘Mighty Mike’ van Gerwen of Netherlands. Photo: Dean Mouhtaropoulos/Getty Images</p>

Michael ‘Bully Boy’ Smith of England walks out before he competes against Michael ‘Mighty Mike’ van Gerwen of Netherlands. Photo: Dean Mouhtaropoulos/Getty Images

Michael Smith is the only player still seeking his first win in the £1 million Cazoo Darts Premier League after 10 weekly rounds of the competition.

The 31-year-old St Helens ace of the oche toppled to a 6-2 defeat against Bradford’s Joe Cullen in front of an estimated 12,000 crowd at the AO Arena, Manchester, on Thursday night.

Smith has accrued a meagre eight points so far - one ahead of his mentor and long-time friend, Gary Anderson, of Scotland, who lies bottom of the eight-strong table.

But once more Bully Boy was punished due to his failure to hit a host of leg-winning doubles and will need to buck this trend if he has any hopes of reaching the play-offs, which will be staged in Berlin on Monday, June 13.

Smith started like a house on fire, landing a maximum on his first visit to the board, but unflustered Cullen roared back and in next to no time had established a commanding 5-0 advantage and then had not much difficulty in crossing the finishing line.

Smith will be disappointed by his inability to put more league points on the board, even though his general scoring cannot be faulted and while his bid for a play-off spot seems to be receding each week, such is the quality of the competitors that things could easily change overnight.

The next port of call is Aberdeen, on Thursday, when Smith faces Aldershot’s James Wade, who won his first weekly round last night.

Other matches: Jonny Clayton v Anderson, Peter Wright v Cullen, Gerwyn Price v Michael van Gerwen.