Krzysztof Kciuk caused the biggest upset on the opening day of the Interwetten International Darts Open in Riesa by knocking out Rob Cross as the 2022 PDC European Tour began on Friday.
Reigning European Champion Cross had been bidding to open his account on the European Tour in this weekend’s £140,000 tournament at the Sachsenarena.
However, the 2018 World Champion was punished for nine missed doubles by Poland’s Kciuk, who reeled off five straight legs from one-all to progress to a second round tie with Jonny Clayton on Saturday.
Dimitri Van den Bergh impressed as he began his own bid to claim a maiden European Tour title with a 6-2 defeat of Martin Lukeman.
The former World Matchplay champion averaged 101.44 and finished six doubles from nine attempts as he moved through to meet Mensur Suljovic.
Ritchie Edhouse will take on world number one Gerwyn Price after defeating Ryan Searle 6-4, taking out a 157 finish on his way to an impressive win.
Luke Woodhouse’s 6-2 defeat of Andy Boulton means that he faces World Champion Peter Wright in round two, while Irish youngster Keane Barry now faces 32-time European Tour event winner Michael van Gerwen following a dominant defeat of Ron Meulenkamp by the same scoreline.
Youngster Nico Kurz claimed a 6-3 win in his all-German tie with Gabriel Clemens to move through to a meeting with Dirk van Duijvenbode in round two.
A 170 checkout from Jermaine Wattimena was not enough to prevent the Dutchman from falling to a 6-2 loss against Germany’s Niko Springer, who now plays Brendan Dolan.
Kim Huybrechts and Daryl Gurney ended the hopes of German pair Florian Hempel and Fabian Schmutzler respectively as they moved into the last 32.
Australia’s Simon Whitlock powered through to a second round clash with World Championship finalist Michael Smith by whitewashing Dragutin Horvat, who missed two darts to win the game’s opening leg before being denied another dart at a double in the contest.
Latvia’s Madars Razma now takes on top seed Joe Cullen following his 6-4 win over Wayne Jones, while Dutchman Vincent van der Voort averaged 104 in a 6-3 win over Adam Gawlas to set up a tie with UK Open champion James Wade.
New PDC Tour Card Holder Brian Raman progressed to a second round date with Jose de Sousa by defeating Host Nation Qualifier David Schlichting 6-3 in the event’s opening tie.
Canada’s Jeff Smith shrugged off a 35-hour journey to Germany which had seen him only arrive in Riesa on Friday evening to enjoy a 6-4 win over Danny van Trijp.
Smith will now play Nathan Aspinall, who makes his first appearance since the World Championship following treatment for a wrist problem in recent weeks.
Former European Tour event winner Mervyn King will play Danny Noppert in round two after seeing off Janos Vegso 6-3, while Lewy Williams’ 6-4 win over Sweden’s Dennis Nilsson sets up a meeting with Krzysztof Ratajski.
Saturday’s second round in Riesa sees the 16 seeded players enter the action, with the event concluding on Sunday across two sessions.
The Interwetten International Darts Open is being broadcast on PDCTV, exclusively on DAZN for viewers in Germany, Austria and Switzerland, and through bookmakers’ websites worldwide.
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Interwetten International Darts Open
Friday February 25
Brian Raman 6-3 David Schlichting
Niko Springer 6-4 Jermaine Wattimena
Madars Razma 6-4 Wayne Jones
Daryl Gurney 6-2 Fabian Schmutzler
Vincent van der Voort 6-3 Adam Gawlas
Luke Woodhouse 6-2 Andy Boulton
Keane Barry 6-2 Ron Meulenkamp
Ritchie Edhouse 6-4 Ryan Searle
Lewy Williams 6-4 Dennis Nilsson
Mervyn King 6-3 Janos Vegso
Kim Huybrechts 6-3 Florian Hempel
Dimitri Van den Bergh 6-2 Martin Lukeman
Krzysztof Kciuk 6-1 Rob Cross
Nico Kurz 6-3 Gabriel Clemens
Simon Whitlock 6-0 Dragutin Horvat
Jeff Smith 6-4 Danny van Trijp
Saturday February 26
Afternoon Session (1300 local time, 1200 GMT)
Jose de Sousa v Brian Raman
Damon Heta v Daryl Gurney
Krzysztof Ratajski v Lewy Williams
Danny Noppert v Mervyn King
Brendan Dolan v Niko Springer
Devon Petersen v Kim Huybrechts
James Wade v Vincent van der Voort
Nathan Aspinall v Jeff Smith
Evening Session (1900 local time, 1800 GMT)
Mensur Suljovic v Dimitri Van den Bergh
Dirk van Duijvenbode v Nico Kurz
Joe Cullen v Madars Razma
Michael van Gerwen v Keane Barry
Gerwyn Price v Ritchie Edhouse
Jonny Clayton v Krzysztof Kciuk
Peter Wright v Luke Woodhouse
Michael Smith v Simon Whitlock