Stewart Anderson continued his march to a possible second World Indoors Singles title after knocking out defending champion Mark Dawes 8-7 11-6 in the game of the tournament so far.

It is proving a tricky route through the tournament for the 33-year-old after hard-fought victories over Colin Walker and Jamie Chestney were followed by another tough assignment against the Radcliffe bowler, who stormed to a first world title last season.

This quarter-final clash was always going to be a mouthwatering affair and so it proved from the outset as both players brought their best games to the table, with the large crowd captivated by such a bonanza of bowls on the portable rink, and it was Anderson who did just enough to secure a place in the last four.

“When I came here, I knew I would have to be right on my game from the start as Colin is a top-16 player in my eyes,” admitted Anderson. “Colin had tough semi-final in the Pairs during the day, but it took the adrenaline out of him, but I was still in a game. Then Jamie was another top-class game and he probably deserved a tie-break.

“And against Mark, in the first set I think it was the best set of bowls that each have us have played. And in the second set I have just managed to get over the line. It is one of those games when you had to be on top of your game.”

There was nothing to separate the two after the first six ends, at five shots apiece and then each collected a double to move the scores to 7-7 and a nerve-wracking final end. The tension was obviously getting to both players as neither were within two feet of the pot, but Dawes held a full house nonetheless as Anderson went wayward with his first three bowls.

But needing to produce a stunner to deny Dawes a one-set advantage, he bowled in superbly to clinch the first and give himself a major boost heading into the second set.

An opening three suggested he may begin to run away with the match, but Dawes was not the reigning champion for nothing and he immediately hit back with a classy double on the next end, although three shots in two ends saw Anderson move four shots clear.

The quality continued and another Dawes double brought him back to within shot, but needing to win the next end, he dropped a two and then only a full house would save him and it wasn’t to be as Anderson booked his place in Saturday’s semi-final.

“Winning the first kicked me on as I thought to myself ‘you’ve played really well and you’ve won it’ whereas Mark would have been thinking ‘I’ve played really well, but I’ve lost and what do I do next?’.

“Then I scored a three on the next end and that was huge – technically a three’s a four if you win the first set. And on the second to last end, if I scored a one he would then be needing a three and again that’s huge.

“In the first set I was scoring a two and he would score two. Then I’d get a three and he’d get a one and then a two. At times both us didn’t want the jack as we wanted the last bowl because we were playing so well at all different lines of length. I don’t think I’ve ever played in a game where I’ve felt like that.”

On his chances of claiming a second title, the ever-cool Scottish International Open winner replied: “Winning in Scotland was a boost for my confidence and I feel now, unlike the last few years, that I’ve got a bit of an edge. My draw up there was tough as well. First up I had an Australian who was excellent in Clive Adams, then I had Alex Marshall, Mervyn King, Greg Harlow and then Paul Foster. I did it the hard way.

“I’ve had a tough draw here as well, but I am not thinking about the title. My immediate priority is the 10 points for the ranking list and I think I’m the provisional number two now.”