World No 1 Gerwyn Price came from a set down to defeat Luke Woodhouse at the World Darts Championship on Monday, while the legendary Steve Beaton’s history-making appearance was ruined by Dutch debutant Danny van Trijp.
Price began his quest for a second world title by recovering well to defeat Woodhouse 3-1, while ‘The Bronzed Adonis’ Beaton was unable to roll back the years as he went down to a disappointing defeat on his 32nd consecutive World Championship appearance.
‘The Special One’ Jose de Sousa mounted a stunning comeback to turn a 0-2 deficit into a 3-2 triumph over Simon Whitlock in a rip-roaring tungsten tussle to end a fascinating afternoon session.
Monday, December 19 – Evening Results
|Geert Nentjes||1-3||Leonard Gates (R1)|
|Ritchie Edhouse||2-3||David Cameron (R1)|
|Steve Beaton||0-3||Danny van Trijp (R1)|
|Gerwyn Price||3-1||Luke Woodhouse (R2)|
Worcestershire thrower Woodhouse averaged almost 105 with 50 per cent on his doubles to deservedly take the opening set against 2021 champion and top seed Price.
‘The Iceman’, who has already hit four nine-darters this calendar year, was struggling to find his form but held his nerve on throw in the deciding leg of the next set to level matters with a much-needed 83 checkout.
Woodhouse began to lose his rhythm with the Welshman securing a 22-dart break in the third set on double 10 before moving 2-1 ahead with a comfortable hold.
Price began to dominate and a neat 76 finish on the bullseye followed by a stunning 150 out put him on the brink. He completed the job on double 5, finishing with a 92.88 average.
“That’s probably the most nervous I’ve been for the last two years and I said that to Luke,” admitted Price. “I stuck in there and Luke bless him fell apart towards the end. He couldn’t hit anything thankfully, but it was a tough game. I just needed to get through.”
Beaton, the 1996 Lakeside champion, was nowhere near his best with young Dutchman Van Trijp, ranked 127 in the world, taking full advantage for a dream 3-0 win against the 58-year-old veteran.
Van Trijp opened up a 2-0 lead with Beaton struggling down at 20 per cent on the doubles before surging back from 2-0 down in the third set to claim a famous victory and set up a meeting with Jonny Clayton.
American Leonard Gates came from a set down to defeat Geert Nentjes 3-1 on his debut with three ton-plus finishes of 100, 128 and 111 along the way.
“I love it here. This is the dart mecca,” said crowd-favourite Gates, who clinched his passage through to Ally Pally by winning the North American Championship.
He will take on former Lakeside champion Stephen Bunting for a spot in the third round on Wednesday evening.
A wasp, a miscount and a remarkable comeback! Ritchie Edhouse squandered six match darts and then capitulated from 2-0 up as Canadian David Cameron – with a little help from the Ally Pally wasp – reeling off the next nine out of 10 legs to complete one of the greatest comebacks in the history of the tournament.
“Sometimes you feel down and out but, you know, I just stuck with it and it was good,” said 53-year-old Cameron. “It (the wasp) might be lucky or something but I didn’t even know it was there.”
Monday, December 19 – Afternoon Results
|Andrew Gilding||3-2||Robert Owen (R1)|
|Danny Jansen||3-2||Paolo Nebrida (R1)|
|Niels Zonneveld||0-3||Lewy Williams (R1)|
|Jose de Sousa||3-2||Simon Whitlock (R2)|
De Sousa wins five-set tussle to dump out ‘The Wizard’ I Williams’ near nine-darter
An emotional De Sousa recovered from 2-0 down to dump out former finalist Whitlock in a high-quality encounter.
The Portuguese ace looked beaten after the opening two sets, struggling to find big scores and lacking a killer instinct on the outer ring.
However, he then clicked into gear with three fabulous finishes of 114, 127 and 136 to turn the game on its head as Whitlock was unable to arrest the momentum in the final set.
Speaking to Sky Sports’ Polly James, a tearful De Sousa explained his gesture at the end of his match: “Last week the wife of my cousin died of cancer. I’m here for you and you know that.”
Lewy Williams meanwhile almost capped a 3-0 victory over Niels Zonneveld with perfection, but missed D12 for a nine-dart finish in the final leg of the match.
It was largely routine for the ‘Prince of Wales’, with the critical moment coming in the deciding leg of set two, as Williams fired in a ton checkout with his opponent waiting on 32.
Earlier in the day, Andrew ‘Goldfinger’ Gilding was forced to dig deep to deliver a 3-2 win over Robert Owen.
Owen took the opening set to a chorus of boos and he Welshman appeared to be in control at 2-1 in the second set. However, Gilding then delivered a stunning 105 checkout to break throw and turn the contest on its head.
Owen forced a deciding set with a 154 out-shot. But Gilding used all his experience, sealing the win on a superb ‘Shanghai’ checkout.
Meanwhile, Danny Jansen had enough in the locker to get past world No 211 Paolo Nebrida 3-2.
‘The Mullet’ had two match darts for a 3-0 triumph, but the Filipino came roaring back into the contest to make it a nervy finish for the Dutchman, who eventually completed the win.
Tuesday at Ally Pally
Women’s World Matchplay winner Fallon Sherrock will make her Alexandra Palace return against Ricky Evans on before Dutch legend Raymond van Barneveld gets his 30th world championship appearance underway.
Van Barneveld – fresh from reaching last month’s Grand Slam of Darts semi-finals – will be the 32nd seed in his milestone appearance – matching the position from which he won the 2007 World Championship at the Circus Tavern.
“I’m in the top 32 now, and I’m proud of myself. I am really happy, and if you feel happy, then anything is possible”
Raymond van Barneveld
Tuesday, December 20 – Fixtures (1900 GMT)
|Jim Williams||vs||Sebastian Bialecki (R1)|
|Jamie Hughes||vs||Jimmy Hendriks (R1)|
|Ricky Evans||vs||Fallon Sherrock (R1)|
|Raymond van Barneveld||vs||Ryan Meikle (R2)|
“30 World Championships, wow! This sport has changed my life,” reflected Van Barneveld, who will play Ryan Meikle for a place in the third round.
“The World Championship is the big one. This is the one you want to win. You want to perform well.
“I’m in the top 32 now, and I’m proud of myself. I am really happy, and if you feel happy, then anything is possible.”
Watch the 2023 PDC World Darts Championship – live on Sky Sports Darts – all the way through to the final on January 3.