Cristo Reyes claimed a hat-trick of wins to top Group 29 of the Unibet Home Tour on Friday night.
Reyes, who joins Jesus Noguera as the second Spanish player to win a Home Tour group, began the night with a 5-4 defeat of popular Scot John Henderson.
In one of the closest groups so far on the Home Tour, Reyes came out on top of another match to go the distance as he edged out Ryan Meikle 5-4.
Heading into the final game of the night, Dutchman Danny Noppert and Henderson both still harboured chances of topping the group, but Reyes sealed the group with a 5-2 win against Noppert.
The Unibet Home Tour continues on Saturday night with Group 30, which will see two-time World Champion Gary Anderson make his highly-anticipated Home Tour debut.
Unibet Home Tour Group 29 – Friday May 15 Danny Noppert 5-2 Ryan Meikle Cristo Reyes 5-4 John Henderson Cristo Reyes 5-4 Ryan Meikle John Henderson 5-4 Danny Noppert John Henderson 5-0 Ryan Meikle Cristo Reyes 5-2 Danny Noppert
Jesus Noguera proved to be the surprise package on Friday night as the Spaniard won Unibet Home Tour Group 22.
The lowest ranked player in the group, Noguera began the night with a shock 5-3 victory over world number ten Ian White, thanks to superior accuracy on the doubles.
Noguera, who won his PDC Tour Card for the first time in January through via the 2019 Challenge Tour, made it back-to-back wins as he defeated James Wilson 5-2.
Although Noguera went down 5-2 to Dutchman Danny Noppert in the penultimate game of the night, Noppert failed to win by the four-leg margin he needed to stay in the hunt to top the group.
White needed to win his last game of the night against James Wilson by 5-3 or better, but he fell just short which meant Noguera ended the night on top.
The Unibet Home Tour continues on Saturday night with Group 23, which will see Australian World Cup star Kyle Anderson in action.
Unibet Home Tour Group 22 – Friday May 8 Jesus Noguera 5-3 Ian White Danny Noppert 5-4 James Wilson Jesus Noguera 5-2 James Wilson Ian White 5-2 Danny Noppert Danny Noppert 5-2 Jesus Noguera James Wilson 5-4 Ian White
Michael van Gerwen will meet Michael Smith in the last 16 of the 2020 Belgian Darts Championship, as host nation hopes were ended in Hasselt on Saturday.
Both Van Gerwen and Smith saw off Belgian opponents to set up Sunday afternoon’s exciting opening third round match.
World number one van Gerwen missed double 12 for a nine-darter in the final leg of his 6-3 victory over Mike De Decker, while Smith enjoyed a 6-1 win against Ronny Huybrechts.
Belgian number one Dimitri Van Den Bergh came the closest out of his countrymen to reaching the final day but lost out 6-5 to Jamie Hughes, while Kim Huybrechts was beaten 6-4 by Dutch ace Jeffrey de Zwaan.
Danny Noppert produced the performance of the second round as he averaged 108.96 in a 6-2 success over fellow Dutchman Jermaine Wattimena.
Noppert hit five 180s in an outstanding display to reach the last 16, where he will meet World Champion Peter Wright.
Wright was below his best but was untroubled by Andy Hamilton as the Scotsman went on to complete a comfortable 6-2 win.
Noppert’s fellow Dutch talents Dirk van Duijvenbode and Martijn Kleermaker also progressed to the final day with victories against seeded opposition.
Van Duijvenbode moved into the last 16 of a European Tour event for the first time after defeating number two seed Ian White 6-3, while Kleermaker reached the third round stage on his first attempt with a 6-3 success over Joe Cullen.
Kleermaker’s last 16 opponent will be Mervyn King, who produced a stunning performance to defeat number eight seed Glen Durrant 6-4 with an average of 105.98.
Mensur Suljovic defeated Ryan Searle 6-4 in an entertaining encounter, which saw the pair share four three-figure finishes – including checkouts of 170 and 145 by Searle despite defeat.
Steve West will face Suljovic on Sunday after defying a 104.14 average from Jonny Clayton in a 6-2 success over the Welshman.
Gerwyn Price made light work of Dutch qualifier Wesley Plaisier, who completed a fabulous 154 checkout in the only leg he won against the world number three.
Polish star Krzysztof Ratajski kicked off his 2020 European Tour campaign with a 6-2 triumph over Germany’s Gabriel Clemens.
Ratajski will take on Rob Cross in round three after the 2019 European Champion eased past Australia’s Damon Heta 6-1.
James Wade defeated Steve Lennon 6-3 to set up a third round clash with Nathan Aspinall, who produced a pivotal 167 checkout in a 6-3 victory over Steve Beaton.
The Belgian Darts Championship concludes with two sessions on Sunday March 1, with live streaming on PDCTV, as well as through a series of bookmakers’ websites worldwide.
Sunday afternoon will see the remaining 16 players battle it out for places in the evening session, which hosts the quarter-finals, semi-finals and final -where the winner will earn £25,000.
2020 Belgian Darts Championship Saturday February 29 Second Round Afternoon Session Michael Smith 6-1 Ronny Huybrechts Martijn Kleermaker 6-3 Joe Cullen Krzysztof Ratajski 6-2 Gabriel Clemens Mervyn King 6-4 Glen Durrant Rob Cross 6-1 Damon Heta Dirk van Duijvenbode 6-3 Ian White Danny Noppert 6-2 Jermaine Wattimena James Wade 6-3 Steve Lennon
Evening Session Nathan Aspinall 6-3 Steve Beaton Gerwyn Price 6-1 Wesley Plaisier Peter Wright 6-2 Andy Hamilton Michael van Gerwen 6-3 Mike De Decker Jeffrey de Zwaan 6-4 Kim Huybrechts Jamie Hughes 6-5 Dimitri Van den Bergh Mensur Suljovic 6-4 Ryan Searle Steve West 6-2 Jonny Clayton
Gerwyn Price survived a huge scare against William O’Connor on Day Seven of the 2019/20 William Hill World Darts Championship on Thursday at London’s Alexandra Palace.
World number three Price was twice a leg away from crashing out of the tournament, but Republic of Ireland’s O’Connor was unable to deliver the fatal blow.
With the deciding set tied at 2-2 in legs, O’Connor approached the oche needing four points but threw at double one, allowing Price to take out 75 to break throw before winning it with a 13-dart leg.
With Rob Cross and Michael Smith among the seeded players to fall at the first hurdle, Price showed determination to avoid joining them but admitted he never felt at ease on the big stage.
“That’s the most uncomfortable I’ve ever felt in a darts match, I couldn’t handle the heat up there,” admitted Price, who will meet John Henderson in round three.
“From the moment I walked out I never felt at ease and I ended up chasing Willie throughout; he was probably the better player.
“He put me under pressure and I knew I don’t have the best of records here but a win’s a win.
“I had a bit of luck with Willie going for the wrong double at the end but I’m not going to tap him on the shoulder and tell him that!
“I’ve won tournaments before where I should’ve gone out in my first game so maybe this could be another one of those.”
After edging the opening set 3-2, Price lost both the next two 3-1 to go within a set of a shock early exit.
Set four went to a deciding leg, putting the Welsh number one on the brink for the first time in the contest but Price found a last dart double six for a 15-dart leg when he needed it most.
With O’Connor 2-1 up in the deciding set, another 15-dart leg from Price took the match to a tie-break, before O’Connor’s counting error allowed Price to go ahead for the first time since set one.
Price produced a timely 180 in the next leg, followed by a 134 setup shot to leave double 18 which he pinned with his first dart to relieve fears of a first hurdle exit.
Day Seven of darts’ biggest event also saw Chris Dobey reach the third round in dramatic fashion, as he survived two match darts to overcome Ron Meulenkamp in a thrilling tie-break.
Having squandered a two-set lead, Dobey found himself 2-0 down in the deciding set but after the Dutchman missed two darts at double eight to end the contest, Dobey made no mistake on double 14 to level at 2-2.
A 14-dart leg earned Dobey a crucial break of throw, before the next leg saw the Northumbrian seal the win on double eight to reach round three where he will meet Mensur Suljovic or history-maker Fallon Sherrock.
“It’s an amazing feeling to win on that stage, it would’ve been really disappointing to lose here after a good year,” said Dobey.
“When I hit double 14 to level in the last set I said ‘I’m still here’ and I always say it’s never over until it’s over.
“I don’t mind who I play next but I thought Fallon was absolutely outstanding the other night, I was out there watching and the atmosphere was fantastic.”
Two-time World Championship quarter-finalist Dave Chisnall safely secured his passage through to the third round with a 3-1 win over Vincent van der Voort.
Although Chisnall struggled to produce his trademark high-scoring on a consistent basis, his accuracy on the outer ring saw him miss just five darts at double to keep Van der Voort at bay.
Chisnall, who has enjoyed a return to form in 2019, will face another Dutchman, Jeffrey de Zwaan in round three.
“I’m really happy with the win, Vincent is a top player so I’m relieved to get a difficult first game out of the way,” said Chisnall.
“I’ve changed darts but it’s not just that, I feel relaxed playing and I probably want it more now than ever before.
“I’ve never practiced like this for a World Championship and hopefully this year we’re going to see the best version of myself.
“If I play my best game all the way through, who knows what could happen?”
Steve Beaton began his 19th PDC World Championship with a 3-1 victory over Australian number two Kyle Anderson.
With Beaton leading 2-1 in sets, Anderson missed three darts to take the contest to a deciding set before Beaton clinically took out 50 in two darts to advance to round three.
Beaton now has the chance to reach last 16 for first time since the 2003/04 event against eighth seed James Wade.
Popular Scot Henderson breezed into the last 32 for the third year in a row with a 3-0 whitewash of James Richardson.
Richardson, who came through a last-leg shoot-out with Mikuru Suzuki in round one, registered just three legs in the contest as Henderson dominated throughout.
There was a less simple passage into the last 32 for Danny Noppert, who came from behind to beat Callan Rydz 3-2.
Debutant Rydz landed a 160 checkout on his way to a 2-1 lead in sets, before World Series of Darts Finals runner-up Noppert won six of the last seven legs to book his place in round three against Kim Huybrechts.
There was heart-break for last year’s quarter-finalist Ryan Joyce as he missed four match darts against Jan Dekker.
From 2-0 down in sets, Joyce fought hard to take the match to a deciding but Dutchman Dekker made the most of his chance to reach round two for a second successive year where he will take on Welsh number two Jonny Clayton.
A day of drama also saw Justin Pipe survive three match darts as he fought back from 2-1 down to defeat Slovenian debutant Benjamin Pratnemer.
Pratnemer missed a trio of darts at double ten and double five to win 3-1, before Pipe found a vital last dart double eight to level.
Pipe then went on to win the deciding set 3-1 to enjoy a winning return to darts’ biggest stage after a two-year absence, with world number six Daryl Gurney awaiting him in round two.
The William Hill World Championship continues on Friday with two sessions of second round action, as Peter Wright begins his quest for the Sid Waddell Trophy against Noel Malicdem of the Philippines.
Day Eight will be broadcast live on the Sky Sports Darts channel and through NOW TV in the UK, on PDCTV-HD for Rest of the World Subscribers and through the PDC’s worldwide broadcast partners including DAZN and RTL7.
Thursday December 19 Afternoon Session (1230 GMT) 2x First Round, 2x Second Round Justin Pipe 3-2 Benjamin Pratnemer (First Round) Jan Dekker 3-2 Ryan Joyce (First Round) John Henderson 3-0 James Richardson (Second Round) Steve Beaton 3-1 Kyle Anderson (Second Round)
Evening Session (1900 GMT) 4x Second Round Chris Dobey 3-2 Ron Meulenkamp (Second Round) Danny Noppert 3-2 Callan Rydz (Second Round) Dave Chisnall 3-1 Vincent van der Voort (Second Round) Gerwyn Price 3-2 William O’Connor (Second Round)
Friday December 20 Afternoon Session (1230 GMT) 4x Second Round Darren Webster v Yuki Yamada (Second Round) Mervyn King v Ciaran Teehan (Second Round) Jonny Clayton v Joyce/Dekker (Second Round) Ricky Evans v Mark McGeeney (Second Round)
Evening Session (1900 GMT) 4x Second Round Nathan Aspinall v Danny Baggish (Second Round) Joe Cullen v Nico Kurz (Second Round) Max Hopp v Benito van de Pas (Second Round) Peter Wright v Noel Malicdem (Second Round)
Michael van Gerwen clinched the 2019 Jack’s Casino World Series of Darts Finals, beating fellow Dutchman Danny Noppert 11-2 on home soil in Amsterdam.
The World Number One blitzed through the pack on the final day of action at the AFAS Live, dropping just 12 legs in victories against Jonny Clayton, Mensur Suljovic and Noppert on his way to the title.
Averaging just under 102 for the tournament, Van Gerwen was at his dominant best throughout.
Noppert, playing in his first PDC televised final, started the brighter by clinching the opening leg but quickly faded.
Perhaps jaded from his epic last-leg Semi-Final victory over Dave Chisnall, Noppert struggled to keep pace with Van Green who was finding the treble 20 with ease – landing nine maximums in total.
A string of nine successive legs followed from the reigning World Champion, as he raced to within two of the title at the second interval.
Looking for a showpiece finish, Van Gerwen landed seven perfect darts and scored 499 in nine, before floundering on double-one, allowing Noppert to take out 42 to get a second leg on the board.
But the title was quickly sealed by Van Gerwen as he clinched the remaining two legs to add to his victories in 2015, 2016 and 2017.
“It’s been another phenomenal tournament for me,” said Van Gerwen.
“The crowd here were fantastic, and I am very pleased to have produced a good performance for them and win myself another title”
“Danny also played a superb tournament and I am sure we will see more of him on the big stages in the future.”
In a tournament marked as the farewell of a legend in his home country as Raymond van Barneveld bowed out after being beaten 10-8 by Dave Chisnall in the last eight, it was perhaps fitting that the final was contested by two younger Dutchmen.
It was a good run for the five-time World Champion as he produced some of his best darts of the year, but ultimately bid his farewell to the Dutch crowd in the quarter-finals.
But Chisnall was then denied a repeat of the World Grand Prix Final with Van Gerwen at the hands of Noppert.
The 28-year-old produced an incredible 102 checkout in the deciding leg to capitalise on a missed match dart from Chisnall and book his place in the final.
That victory for Noppert was also bad news for Suljovic, with the Dutchman qualifying for the 2019 Grand Slam of Darts at the expense of the Austrian.
That was not the only drama that Noppert had faced on the final day in Amsterdam. The quarter-finals saw him miss a staggering 12 match-darts against Ian White before eventually sealing the win in a last-leg decider.
The run to the final marks the Dutchman’s best PDC result and he spoke of his pride after the decider.
“I am very happy with getting to the final,” said Noppert.
“It was great for me but in the end I just didn’t have enough and it was very tough against Michael.
“I have confidence and I hope this will help me in the future, I’m disappointed to lose but proud of the way I played this weekend.
Noppert will return to action next weekend as the Grand Slam of Darts takes place in Wolverhampton with the draw for the event taking place on Tuesday (November 5).
Sunday November 3Afternoon Session (1345 local time, 1245 GMT)Quarter-Finals Mensur Suljovic 10-9 Krzysztof Ratajski Michael van Gerwen 10-6 Jonny Clayton Danny Noppert 10-9 Ian White Dave Chisnall 10-8 Raymond van Barneveld
Evening Session (2000 local time, 1900 GMT) Semi-Finals Michael van Gerwen 11-4 Mensur Suljovic Danny Noppert 11-10 Dave Chisnall
Gerwyn Price set up a tantalising second-round clash with Michael van Gerwen after beating Michael Smith 6-3 on day one of the Jack’s Casino World Series of Darts Finals.
The European Championship runner-up averaged 101.86 in front of a bumper crowd at the AFAS Live in Amsterdam and had too much for his English opponent on the night.
The match began with Price taking a 3-1 lead, which included a 142 finish, before Smith went on to level at 3-3.
The Welshman then regained control, breaking in the eighth leg of the match and eventually going on to win the match with a 52 finish.
“Michael (Smith) used to be a bit of a bogey player for me but I do like playing him. He is quick and doesn’t mess about and now I feel confident playing against him.
“After last week I’ve just decided to go out and try and enjoy myself and I’ll be doing that against MVG tomorrow. It’s not the end of the world if I lose and I’ve had some great games against him and I’m going to give my all tomorrow night.”
The meeting between Van Gerwen and Price will be the 19th between the pair, with the Dutchman winning 17 of the previous clashes and the other being a draw in the Premier League.
Raymond van Barneveld’s final competitive tournament in Holland will commence on Saturday night when he takes on his fellow countryman Jermaine Wattimena.
Wattimena secured his spot in round two with a 6-4 win over Gabriel Clemens, with the Dutchman taking out 111 to claim the win.
“It will be a pleasure to play Raymond tomorrow, the atmosphere should be incredible,” said Wattimena.
“I really wanted to win today so I was very happy when I hit the double for the 111 finish.”
Dave Chisnall was another headline winner in Amsterdam on day one, defeating Simon Whitlock 6-4.
Chisnall will face European Championship winner Rob Cross in round two and is relishing the challenge.
“I fancy beating Rob tomorrow. I’m feeling pretty confident at the moment I just need to start finding the doubles.
“I played really well last weekend but just made some mistakes on the final day. Rob is a great player but I’m ready for him,” concluded Chisnall.
In the opening match of the night, Jonny Clayton defeated Wayne Jones 6-4. Jones came out the stronger of the pair averaging 101 and leading 3-1 after the first four legs.
The Welshman then found his form, winning five of the next six legs to set up a second round encounter with James Wade, who beat Clayton at the European Championship a week before.
“That was tough, I couldn’t stop shaking at the start, so I’m just glad to get the win,” said Clayton after his win.
“My game is in a good place at the moment and I’m playing well, James got the better of me last week and I’ll need to play well to beat him tomorrow but I believe I can do it.”
Ian White survived a comeback from Ricky Evans on day one as the world number 11 let a 3-0 slip, before eventually winning in the deciding leg, where, with Evans sat on 24 for the match, White took out 76 on tops to seal the victory and a second-round clash with Peter Wright on Saturday night.
“I’ve got to stop giving people chances to come back at me. I know my game is there but I just keep letting people believe the have a chance.
“I can’t do that against Peter tomorrow because no matter what his form is like he can always turn it back on and play brilliantly. It should be a great game.”
Mensur Suljovic punished 16 missed darts at doubles by Kyle Anderson, as he went on to record a 6-1 win over his Australian opponent.
The victory sees the Austrian progress to face Brisbane Darts Masters champion Damon Heta.
“Today was not good, Kyle is my friend but we played so bad in this game. Tomorrow I promise I will be 100% better,” joked Suljovic after the match.
Krzysztof Ratajski will face Daryl Gurney in round two after beating US Darts Masters Champion Nathan Aspinall 6-5 in a thrilling game.
Despite averaging over 103 and hitting almost 65 per cent of his attempts at doubles, Aspinall was able to overcome his opponent and it was Ratajski who managed to get over the line in a last-leg decider.
Ratajski, playing in his first World Series Finals, averaged over 104 and took out 70, with Aspinall sat on 36 to secure the victory.
Danny Noppert completes the second-round line-up and will face Gary Anderson after beating fellow Dutchman Jeffrey de Zwaan 6-3.
The Jack’s Casino World Series of Darts Finals will continue on Saturday night with the eight seeded players from the World Series Order of Merit making their entrances, as the last 16 players battle out for a place in the quarter-finals.
The tournament will be broadcast live on ITV4 in the UK, on PDCTV-HD for Rest of the World Subscribers and through the PDC’s worldwide broadcast partners including DAZN and RTL7.
Friday, November 1 (1945 local time, 1845 GMT) First Round x8 Jonny Clayton 6-4 Wayne Jones Ian White 6-5 Ricky Evans Mensur Suljovic 6-1 Kyle Anderson Krzysztof Ratajski 6-5 Nathan Aspinall Gerwyn Price 6-3 Michael Smith Dave Chisnall 6-4 Simon Whitlock Danny Noppert 6-3 Jeffrey de Zwaan Jermaine Wattimena 6-4 Gabriel Clemens
Saturday, November 2 (2000 local time, 1900 GMT) Second Round x8 James Wade v Jonny Clayton Damon Heta v Mensur Suljovic Daryl Gurney v Krzysztof Ratajski Michael van Gerwen v Gerwyn Price Peter Wright v Ian White Gary Anderson v Danny Noppert Raymond van Barneveld v Jermaine Wattimena Rob Cross v Dave Chisnall
Rob Cross tasted victory at the BoyleSports World Grand Prix for the first time with a 2-1 defeat of Mensur Suljovic on Monday night, as Daryl Gurney and Gerwyn Price were knocked out of the double-start event in Dublin.
World Matchplay champion Cross had failed to win a set in his previous two appearances at the Citywest Convention Centre, losing out 2-0 to Steve Beaton in 2017 and 2018.
However, the number two seed laid those demons to rest with a three-set victory over world number nine Suljovic in a tasty first-round contest.
The first two sets were shared as Cross won the opener 3-1 before his Austrian rival levelled without reply, but the Hastings ace came from a leg down to win the decider 3-1 as he moved into round two.
“I never seem to relax here so I’m just grateful to win,” said Cross. “Mensur wasn’t at his best and maybe we showed each other too much respect, but I’ve practised hard and I was confident.
“The longer format in the next round is better because it’s cut-throat in the first round, and if I can relax the fans might see a bit more of me.”
Cross now meets Glen Durrant, who enjoyed a winning debut at the Citywest Convention Centre after overturning a one-set deficit to defeat Krzysztof Ratajski 2-1.
Ratajski had produced the best set of the tournament so far with three 15-dart legs to move ahead, landing checkouts of 109 and 103 as he took the early advantage.
However, Durrant traded 13-darters with the Polish number one as he took the second set 3-1, before repeating the scoreline in set three to secure victory, finishing 98 to book his last 16 place with 6/9 on his finishing doubles.
“Krzysztof has been playing so well recently so I’m delighted to win,” said the reigning Lakeside Champion. “I’m pleased to be through but it didn’t feel pretty and I’ve got a lot to work on.
“I have to work on my scoring, but my doubles were a positive.”
Third seed Gurney, the 2017 champion, was knocked out in straight sets as Danny Noppert secured his first victory in the double-start event.
Northern Irish ace Gurney took an early 2-1 lead, but paid the price for missing five set darts across the next two legs as Noppert capitalised, before the Dutchman took the second without reply.
“It feels good,” said Noppert. “Daryl missed a lot of doubles and I took my chances, and to win against a top ten player is brilliant for me.
“I’m over the moon with this win and it means a lot to me. I’m in the tournament now and looking forward to Wednesday evening.”
Noppert now meets UK Open champion Nathan Aspinall, who dropped just one leg as he swept past Vincent van der Voort to enjoy a winning World Grand Prix debut.
The UK Open champion’s progression into the world’s top 16 helped to secure his place in the double-start event for the first time, but it was his superb finishing which proved critical as he took out six doubles from eight attempts.
He won the opening set without reply, including the first “whitewash” leg of this year’s event in the third, firing in a 12-darter as the Dutchman missed nine starting doubles.
Aspinall also took the opening two legs of set two, with Van der Voort getting off the mark in the third before tops sealed victory for the Stockport ace.
“It was a good win,” said Aspinall, who averaged 92. “My starting was good and I hit the doubles at the crucial times. I’m happy to win on my debut and it couldn’t have gone much better.”
Dave Chisnall edged out Price in a deciding leg as the 2013 finalist produced a fine comeback from a set down to move into the last 16.
Price produced finishes of 76 and 128 before defying an 11-darter from Chisnall to take the opening set in a decider, only for the Morecambe ace to race through the second without reply.
The third set was finely poised as the pair traded breaks of throw before the game progressed to a sudden-death leg, but Price missed nine starting doubles to allow Chisnall in, with a 99 checkout knocking out the sixth seed.
“I’m very happy with that,” said Chisnall, who now meets Stephen Bunting. “It was tough for both of us and I had to battle, but I got the job done in the end.
“At two-all in the last set, it could have been anyone’s game and luckily I got off to a good start and punished him. I was tight on my doubles today and that won me the game.”
Bunting sealed a place in the last 16 with a straight sets victory over Jonny Clayton, punishing the Welsh ace for 24 missed doubles across the contest.
Bunting, a former semi-finalist, raced through the field set without reply, before a 96 finish and a 13-darter helped him to move 2-1 up in leg three.
Clayton followed an earlier 115 checkout with double 16 to level, but missed four darts to take the set in the deciding leg as Bunting returned on double 18 to complete the win.
“I wasn’t at my best but it was enough and I’m glad to be through,” said Bunting. “I felt great in practice and coming into the match, and I can build on this.
“Jonny struggled on his doubles and I took the chances that he gave me, but I’ll be better in the next round.
“I’ve had some success here by reaching the semi-finals before and I love the format. This is one event where I’ve got a good chance if I can hit my starting doubles and score like I can.”
2018 finalist Peter Wright began his challenge to go one better this time around with a 2-0 defeat of Max Hopp.
German youngster Hopp opened with a 14-darter, but Wright hit back to win the first set in a deciding leg before taking the second by a 3-1 scoreline to set up a second round meeting with Jermaine Wattimena.
“It’s a good win for me because it’s always tough in the first round, so I’m happy,” said Wright. “The performance could have been better, but I’m through and that’s all that matters.”
Wattimena came from a set down to overcome Adrian Lewis 2-1, as the Dutchman moved into round two for a second successive year.
A strong start for Lewis saw him win set one by a 3-1 scoreline, and he twice levelled in set two to move a leg away from victory at two-all, only for double 16 to give Wattimena the set.
The Dutchman then finished 88 as he led in the third, before taking the next two legs to complete his fightback.
“I think that’s my biggest win on stage,” said Wattimena. “Everyone knows what Adrian’s done in his career and he’s an amazing player.
“Winning the second set gave me a lot of confidence. I’d struggled at the beginning but I fought back well.”
The second round begins on Tuesday night, with reigning champion Michael van Gerwen up against Dutch rival Jeffrey de Zwaan – who has won their last two televised meetings at the 2018 UK Open and World Matchplay.
Two-time World Grand Prix winner James Wade plays Mervyn King, Gary Anderson takes on Chris Dobey and Michael Smith faces Ian White.
The BoyleSports World Grand Prix is being held from October 6-12, broadcast live on Sky Sports in the UK, on PDCTV-HD for Rest of the World Subscribers and through the PDC’s worldwide broadcast partners including DAZN and RTL7.
Tickets are still available – click here to secure your seat.
2019 BoyleSports World Grand Prix
Monday October 7 (1900)
Stephen Bunting 2-0 Jonny Clayton (3-0, 3-2)
Nathan Aspinall 2-0 Vincent van der Voort (3-0, 3-1)
Jermaine Wattimena 2-1 Adrian Lewis (1-3, 3-2, 3-0)
Glen Durrant 2-1 Krzysztof Ratajski (0-3, 3-1, 3-1)
Danny Noppert 2-0 Daryl Gurney (3-2, 3-0)
Dave Chisnall 2-1 Gerwyn Price (2-3, 3-0, 3-2)
Rob Cross 2-1 Mensur Suljovic (3-1, 0-3, 3-1)
Peter Wright 2-0 Max Hopp (3-2, 3-1)
Tuesday October 8 (1900 start)
Second Round x4
James Wade v Mervyn King
Michael Smith v Ian White
Michael van Gerwen v Jeffrey de Zwaan
Gary Anderson v Chris Dobey
Wednesday October 9 (1900 start)
Second Round x4
Danny Noppert v Nathan Aspinall
Dave Chisnall v Stephen Bunting
Rob Cross v Glen Durrant
Peter Wright v Jermaine Wattimena
Second Round – best of five sets, best of five legs per set. All legs must begin and end with a double.
Danny Noppert moved into a provisional qualifying place for the Unibet European Championship with victory in the opening round of the Gibraltar Darts Trophy, while 13 other players also won to keep their qualification hopes alive.
Friday saw the start of the 13th and final European Tour event of 2019, after which the 32-player field will be confirmed for the European Championship, which will take place in Göttingen from October 24-27.
32 qualifiers were in action at the Victoria Stadium on day one, 26 of whom harboured hopes of forcing their way into qualifying positions for the European Championship.
The other six players competing on Friday were already assured of their qualifying places, they were Darren Webster, Steve Beaton, Jeffrey de Zwaan, Chris Dobey, Keegan Brown and Jamie Hughes.
The most significant result of the day saw Dutch number six Noppert survive a match dart from Brown to claim a vital 6-5 and give his qualification hopes a huge boost.
Noppert moves into the 32 spot on tournament count-back ahead of John Henderson, however, he must beat World Championship runner-up Michael Smith, who is currently outside the provisional qualifying places, in Saturday’s second round to continue his quest to Göttingen.
Dimitri Van den Bergh cemented his provisional qualification place by taking out a 135 finish on the bullseye to end the resilient challenge of Scott Taylor, claiming a 6-3 win.
The clash between two former European Tour event winners saw Kim Huybrechts end Justin Pipe’s hopes with a 6-3 victory, while De Zwaan defeated Steve West by the same scoreline.
Two Host Nation Qualifiers will star in day two after Dyson Parody recovered from 5-2 down to beat Norway’s Cor Dekker 6-5 and David Francis claimed a shock 6-4 win over Robert Thornton 6-4 to the delight of the Gibraltar fans.
Ryan Joyce and Jose De Sousa both missed double 12 for nine-dart finishes and posted ton-plus averages in their wins over Matt Clark and Darius Labanauskas.
Danish Darts Open runner-up Dobey edged out William O’Connor 6-4, while 19-year-old Dutchman Wessel Nijman picked up his first win on the European Tour, hitting the winning double at the tenth attempt to beat Webster 6-5 after Webster threatened a comeback from 5-1 down.
There were also wins for Michael Rosenauer, Paul Rowley and Poland’s Krzysztof Kciuk on the opening day of the £140,000 tournament, which will see the winner claim the £25,000 top prize.
Saturday’s second day of the Gibraltar Darts Trophy will be broadcast on video.pdc.tv, and through a series of bookmakers’ websites.
2019 Gibraltar Darts Trophy Friday September 27 First Round Afternoon Session Wessel Nijman 6-5 Darren Webster Krzysztof Kciuk 6-3 Kirk Shepherd Ryan Joyce 6-3 Matt Clark Dyson Parody 6-5 Cor Dekker Paul Rowley 6-5 Ryan Meikle Kim Huybrechts 6-3 Justin Pipe Carl Wilkinson 6-3 Justin Hewitt Steve Beaton 6-5 Tony Newell
Evening Session Jeffrey de Zwaan 6-3 Steve West Chris Dobey 6-4 William O’Connor Danny Noppert 6-5 Keegan Brown Michael Rosenauer 6-4 Antony Lopez Dimitri Van den Bergh 6-3 Scott Taylor Jose De Sousa 6-2 Darius Labanauskas David Francis 6-4 Robert Thornton Ritchie Edhouse 6-3 Jamie Hughes
Saturday September 28 Second Round Afternoon Session (1300 local time, 1200 BST) Nathan Aspinall v Ryan Joyce James Wade v Paul Rowley Krzysztof Ratajski v Steve Beaton Jonny Clayton v Kim Huybrechts Rob Cross v Krzysztof Kciuk Daryl Gurney v Carl Wilkinson Dave Chisnall v Jeffrey de Zwaan Michael Smith v Danny Noppert
Evening Session (1915 local time, 1815 BST) Ian White v Michael Rosenauer Jermaine Wattimena v Dimitri Van den Bergh Mensur Suljovic v Wessel Nijman Michael van Gerwen v Jose De Sousa Peter Wright v Dyson Parody Joe Cullen v Edhouse/Hughes Glen Durrant v Chris Dobey Gerwyn Price v David Francis
Sunday September 29 Afternoon Session (1300 local time, 1200 BST) Third Round Van Gerwen/De Sousa v Aspinall/Joyce Wright/Parody v Suljovic/Nijman Wade/Rowley v Clayton/Huybrechts Chisnall/De Zwaan v Wattimena/Van den Bergh White/Rosenauer v Smith/Noppert Ratajski/Beaton v Cullen/Edhouse Gurney/Wilkinson v Durrant/Dobey Price/Francis v Cross/Kciuk
Evening Session (1915 local time, 1815 BST) Quarter-Finals Semi-Finals Final
Sunday’s games played in Draw Bracket order
Format All games up to and including the quarter-finals are the best of 11 legs, with the semi-finals the best of 13 legs and the final the best of 15 legs.
It was a day of upsets in the 2017 BDO World Trophy as reigning champion Darryl Fitton, Danny Noppert and Jamie Hughes all exited in the men’s bracket. With a major shock also coming in the women’s competition, read on to find out more.
Debutant Conan Whitehead was the man who dumped out reigning champion Fitton, 6-4 in a matter of 20 minutes. A sensational 104 checkout was among the highlights from the Gillingham-born Whitehead, and there was little Fitton could do to defend his title and halt the rampaging Barbarian.
Earlier in the day Jamie Hughes fell at the hands of Jeff Smith in a mouthwatering clash. Whilst not living up the pre-match hype, Smith produced a high standard of finishing to end Yozza’s dreams of picking up a first major championship victory.
Joining Hughes on the ride back home was highly fancied Danny Noppert after being bullied into submission by fellow countryman Willem Mandigers. The latter scored consistently throughout the match, with Noppert failing to convert various opportunities to reach the second round. Mandigers will certainly be a threat in the coming days.
In possibly the best encounter of the evening’s action, Darius Labanauskus showed his steel to the block out big Swede Dennis Nilsson. The Lithuanian produced the sensational darts in the contest but it was Nilsson who topped the scoring charts, four maximums for him. But it was the consistent finishing of Labanauskas the pulled him through into round two.
Martin Atkins was the final big name to topple, this time at the hands of Nick Kenny. The 23-year-old shot onto the scene last year and has been making a name for himself ever since. Adding scalps such as the Yorkshire captain can only increase his reputation. Any further progression would be a real building block for the Welsh youngster.
Martin Phillips joined the ranks for the second round with a resounding victory over Carl Dennell. The 57-year-old has failed to make it past the last 16 in his two decades at the helm but, with the home crowd roaring him on, it could just be the extra incentive the Welshman needs. If his clinical performance against Dennell is anything to go by, he could be a serious threat in this year’s World Trophy.
Mark McGeeney progressed to round two with a simple victory over Wouter Vaes. The Gladiator has fared well on the tour in 2017 but is yet to add a TV title. With performances like this he could be a real threat to the big names this year.
Ross Montgomery rounded off the action in the men’s draw, comfortably beating American qualifier Joe Chaney. As his name suggests, ‘The Boss’ dominated the match, totting up five 180s and hitting six perfect darts. It was a decent showing from the Chainsaw in his debut TV match, but it was the Boss who ruled the roost and squeezed through to the next round.
In the women’s section, number three seed Aileen De Graaf dispatched Lindsey Ashton 4-1 with minimum fuss, with her mother Lisa Ashton not fairing any better.
The Lancashire Rose has been on the top of her game in the past 18 months, but in the biggest shock of the day Anca Zijlstra dumped her out of the tournament in the deciding leg. Ashton 3-2 behind early on, levelling proceedings with a sumptuous 121 checkout on the bullseye. She then followed it up with a sensational 171, but Vijlstra kept things simple took her chance on double two to open up the women’s bracket.
The Golden Girl Trina Gulliver breezed through the opening stages of the competition making light work of Maria O’Brien. Could the 10-time World Champion be in line for a seventh World Trophy triumph? Home favourite Rhian Griffiths whitewashed Lorraine Winstanley with a 100 per cent checkout rate, putting the likes of De Graaf and Gulliver on alert. She will definitely be a name to watch out for in round two.
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