Day 6 at Ally Pally saw a number of entertaining games amongst the lower ranked players with Jim Williams producing a fine comeback to edge out Sebastian Bialecki.
In a highly entertaining five-set affair, The Quiff won six of the last seven legs to set up a meeting with James Wade in round two. Following a tentative start, the contest sparked into life in a high-quality third set, as Bialecki followed up legs of 13 and 14 darts with a superb 136 finish to establish a 2-1 lead.
The Welshman responded by reeling off set four without reply to force a final set, and after kicking it off with a crucial 130 checkout on the bull, Williams’ experience paid dividends in the closing stages.
“I’m delighted with the win, but I was really nervous. That was a tough one to get through,” admitted Williams, who averaged 91, landed four 180s and also converted a 154 checkout.
“James is a great player, but I’m always comfortable playing James, so hopefully I can relax and play my game.”
Elsewhere, Jimmy Hendriks came through a gruelling four-set tussle against Jamie Hughes to triumph on his Alexandra Palace bow, condemning Hughes to a fourth straight defeat in the capital.
Hughes fought back to win an edgy opening set, but Hendriks battled back, firing in three 180s and taking out a superb tops-tops 104 finish in the penultimate leg to seal his progression.
“It was a tough battle. I am really relieved,” reflected the 28-year-old Dutchman, who will play Brendan Dolan for a place in the third round.
“It is a special feeling to play on this stage. Unfortunately, I didn’t play my best game, but hopefully I can show it in the next round.”
Wednesday’s Cazoo Darts World Championship action will see a blockbuster double session take place, as the first round draws to a close on Day Seven at Alexandra Palace.
The afternoon session will see last year’s quarter-finalist Callan Rydz take on World Youth Champion Josh Rock, with 2021 semi-finalist Dave Chisnall up against Andrew Gilding.
Three-time World Champion Michael van Gerwen plays Welsh youngster Lewy Williams in Wednesday’s headline act, with German number one Gabriel Clemens facing William O’Connor.
The Cazoo World Darts Championship is being broadcast live on Sky Sports in the UK & Ireland, through the PDC’s worldwide broadcast partners including DAZN and Viaplay, and on PDCTV (excluding UK, Ireland, Germany, Austria & Switzerland based subscribers).
Tuesday December 20
3x First Round, 1x Second Round
Jim Williams 3-2 Sebastian Bialecki (0-3, 3-1, 2-3, 3-0, 3-1) (R1)
Jimmy Hendriks 3-1 Jamie Hughes (2-3, 3-1, 3-2, 3-1) (R1)
Ricky Evans 3-1 Fallon Sherrock (1-3, 3-2, 3-2, 3-2) (R1)
Raymond van Barneveld 3-1 Ryan Meikle (1-3, 3-0, 3-2, 3-0) (R2)
Wednesday December 21
Afternoon Session (1230 GMT)
2x First Round, 2x Second Round
John O’Shea v Darius Labanauskas (R1)
Martijn Kleermaker v Xicheng Han (R1)
Callan Rydz v Josh Rock (R2)
Dave Chisnall v Andrew Gilding (R2)
Evening Session (1900 GMT)
4x Second Round
Mervyn King v Danny Baggish (R2)
Gabriel Clemens v William O’Connor (R2)
Michael van Gerwen v Lewy Williams (R2)Stephen Bunting v Leonard Gates (R2)
Images: Kieran Cleeves / PDC
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