Day 3 of the World Cup of Darts signalled the start of the ‘singles stage’ in the competition, with each player playing one singles match and if the score after two games is level moving to a double’s decider.
Wales the 2nd Seeds were given an almighty scare by last year’s runners up Austria, winning 4-3 in a doubles decider to book their place in the Quarter Finals.
Gerwyn Price opened against Mensur Suljovic, and despite averaging lower than his Austrian opponent, he won 4-3 missing just three darts at double in the match. The Gentle missed two himself at the outer ring and watched the Red Dragon man hit 156 to get his first leg for his country in the tie.
That wasn’t it for The Iceman in terms of ton plus checkouts, after hitting 149 and 142 in back-to-back legs coming back from 3-2 down to win and put a point on the board for his country. Two treble seventeens and double tops sunk former Champions League of Darts winner Suljovic, meaning his partner Rowby-John Rodriguez had to beat Jonny Clayton in the second singles match.
The Austrian certainly delivered for his country when it really mattered, beating the former Premier League champion 4-2 with three maximums to his name. Little John averaged 94.74 which was lower than The Ferret after six legs of darts played, hitting tops with his first dart to level the tie up for Austria in Frankfurt.
The doubles decider went all the way to the wire in the Eissporthalle, with the two PDC major winners averaging ten more points than Austria. Clayton finished 98 in the fifth leg to hold for a 3-2 lead, hitting double nineteen with his second dart in what was the highest finish of the final match.
The man from Pontyberem despite his singles defeat hit the winning double six with his first dart to send the 2nd Seeds into the Quarter Finals, as they look to repeat their achievement from back in 2020. Their opponents will be hosts Germany after they brushed Denmark aside 2-0, with both Martin Schindler and Gabriel Clemens averaging 93 in winning both singles ties 4-1.
Third seeds Netherlands really put a marker down in the afternoon session, finishing off Ireland 2-0 with Danny Noppert averaging just shy of a ton and including five maximums in beating William O’Connor 4-1. Former Ally Pally Quarter Finalist Dirk van Duijvenbode then really gave the crowd their moneys worth, averaging a staggering 110.64 in beating Steve Lennon 4-1 in the second singles match.
Between the pair they hit nine 180s over 10 legs of darts against the 2019 runners up, really showing that Michael van Gerwen not being in Germany is not the end of the world for a nation that has won the competition four times. The Titan included a 108 checkout in the opening leg of his match with Scuba Steve, showing his intention to not get the UK Open champion back onstage for a double’s decider.
Northern Ireland proves a difficult Quarter Final opponent for the Dutch, with Daryl Gurney and Brendan Dolan 2-0 winners over New Zealand in the opening Second Round match of the day. Superchin missed just one dart at double in beating Ben Robb 4-2 including a ton plus checkout of 117 in the third leg for a 2-1 lead. The 36-year-old finished 67 on double eight in two darts to give his country a 1-0 lead, a strong captains performance from the 2017 Grand Prix champ.
Brendan Dolan went 2-0 down against Warren Parry but reeled of four legs on the spin to finish the match of his country and win 4-2 on the oche. The History Maker averaged 98.70 in the match and included a ton plus checkout of his own, as the Winmau man found 107 in the fifth leg to break his opponent for the second time in the match.
Reigning champions Scotland needed a doubles decider to get past Portugal, after World Champion Peter Wright lost to Jose de Sousa 4-3 in the second singles tie. John Henderson put the 8th Seeds ahead by whitewashing Vitor Jeronimo in the opening match but returned in front of the Frankfurt faithful after the number 1 player in the worlds narrow defeat.
Like their opening match against Hong Kong, The Highlander finished the tie for Scotland on double tops to finish 43 with his last dart. Scotland will face the number 1 Seeds England after they also needed a doubles decider to see off Latvia earlier on in the night, with James Wade losing to Madars Razma in the second singles match.
Simon Whitlock was the shining light for Australia in their Second-Round match with Sweden, throwing two maximums to see of Johan Engstrom in a last leg decider. Partner Damon Heta is once again enjoying a strong year on the PDC circuit but let a 2-0 lead slip against Daniel Larsson, losing a last leg decider for a double’s match to see who went through. Swedish international Larsson included a 132 checkout in the fifth leg hitting bull, treble fourteen and double tops for a 3-2 lead.
The doubles decider saw the pair from down under average over 9 points more than their opponents, with Heta making up for his defeat in the singles as he pinned double ten with his second dart, to ensure his country were 4-1 winners in the match and 2-1 winners in the tie. 4th Seeds Belgium will be waiting in the Quarter Finals as they professionally dispatched Poland 2-0 in the other Second Round match of the evening session.
Action continues from midday with 3rd Seeds Netherlands facing Northern Ireland in the first Last 8 tie, with Danny Noppert facing Daryl Gurney in an all Winmau tie before Brendan Dolan faces Dirk van Duijvenbode.
World Cup of Darts 2022 Results
Northern Ireland (6) 2-0 New Zealand
Netherlands (3) 2-0 Ireland
Wales (2) 2-1 Austria
Germany (7) 2-0 Denmark
Australia (5) 2-1 Sweden
Belgium (4) 2-0 Poland
England (1) 2-1 Latvia
Scotland (8) 2-1 Portugal
Quarter Finals Order of Play
Netherlands (3) v Northern Ireland (6)
Wales (2) v Germany (7)
Belgium (4) v Australia (5)
England (1) v Scotland (8)
Images: Kais Bodensieck / PDC
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