Thursday at the World Darts Championship with Mensur Suljovic headlining
Seventh-seed Mensur Suljovic headlines day eight of the World Darts Championship, where two-time winner Adrian Lewis, Stephen Bunting and Mervyn King are all in second-round action.
Colin Lloyd’s One to Watch
“I don’t think you can afford to miss Adrian Lewis v Ted Evetts. Adrian has had a tough time but I’ve spent some time with him lately at an exhibition and he was playing Dave Chisnall – he bashed him about with loads of 180s, the Adrian of old if you like.
“But he can’t afford to look past Ted who played superbly well on the big stage for his first win up there, averaging in the 90’s and playing some good stuff – he’s seen as a bit of a rising star.
“Adrian needs this big stage, he’s a back-to-back world champion so we know he can produce, but he needs to gets his juices flowing and a performance that shows he can compete with the very best.”
Jermaine Wattimena v Michael Barnard (R2)
Jermaine Wattimena kicks off Thursday’s double session, with the Dutchman looking to set up a third-round clash with two-time world champion Gary Anderson.
The 29th seed has only registered one win from his five previous matches on the Alexandra Palace stage, while Barnard appears at the Worlds for the first time since 2009.
Barnard, the PDC Unicorn Challenge Tour Order of Merit winner, survived six match darts in the opening round to edge past Jose de Sousa in a final-leg decider.
Alan Norris v Steve Lennon (R2)
Alan ‘Chuck’ Norris, who is known for his power scoring, and has won three ranking titles since joining the PDC circuit in 2015.
The former Lakeside finalist and semi-finalist at the 2017 UK Open takes on the world No 38 from Ireland.
Carlow native Lennon safely navigated his way through his opening match against Australia’s James Bailey with a 3-0 victory on Tuesday night and now has his sights set on upsetting Norris.
- Irishman Lennon out to cause a shock
Stephen Bunting v Luke Humphries (R2)
Former BDO world champion Stephen Bunting will be aiming to avoid another early exit when he faces the PDC Development Tour Order of Merit leader.
Bunting has crashed out at the last-64 stage on each of the previous two years and hasn’t reached the third round at Alexandra Palace since his run to the quarter-finals during his rookie appearance in 2015.
The 18th seed will face a tough test against Humphries, a three-time winner in 2018, who fired a 97.58 average on his way to an impressive straight-sets win over Adam Hunt on Sunday.
Steve Beaton v Chris Dobey (R2)
Steve Beaton rounds off the afternoon session as the 54-year-old begins his World Championship against Chris Dobey in an intriguing all-English contest.
The ‘Bronzed Adonis’, bidding to reach the last-32 for the fourth consecutive year, has made three semi-final appearances on the PDC Pro Tour in 2018, while Dobey impressed in front of the TV cameras earlier this year with a quarter-final finish at the Players Championship finals.
Dobey only dropped two legs as he cruised past Russia’s Boris Koltsov 3-0 in his opening match of the tournament, with a third-round meeting with Vincent van der Voort awaiting the winner.
Cristo Reyes v Rowby-John Rodriguez (R2)
Cristo Reyes has the chance to book a third-round meeting with defending champion Rob Cross, who he defeated in the Players Championship Finals at Minehead last month.
Reyes has struggled in 2018 and hasn’t got beyond the last-16 in any tournament, with defeat against Rowby-John Rodriguez likely to see the Spaniard drop outside the top 32 on the Order of Merit.
Rodriguez secured his first Ally Pally win at the fourth attempt by seeing off Ricky Evans in the opening round, with the Austrian looking to get beyond the last-64 for the first time in his career.
Mervyn King v Jan Dekker (R2)
Jan Dekker was given an almighty fright before ending the hopes of women’s BDO world champion Lisa Ashton in the first round.
His reward is a tie against 52-year-old King, who is a two-time former Lakeside finalist, and a 2009 PDC semi-finalist.
The King claimed his first PDC title in almost four years with a 6-2 win over James Wade in the final of Players Championship in June.
Adrian Lewis v Ted Evetts (R2)
Two-time World Champion Adrian Lewis opens his bid for a third Ally Pally title against ‘Super Ted’.
‘Jackpot’ has failed to hit the heights which won him back-to-back titles in 2011 and 2012, and faces a player in Evetts who defeated Simon Stevenson 3-0 in the previous round.
- Can ‘Super Ted’ make Ally Pally mark?
Mensur Suljovic v Ryan Searle (R2)
Former Champions League winner Mensur Suljovic will be hot favourite to make it through to the third-round a potential clash with James Wilson.
The Austrian crowd favourite has won the German Masters and Danish Open this year, as well as reaching the final of the World Matchplay where he lost out in an epic to Gary Anderson.
Debutant Searle defeated Stephen Burton 3-0 and now the Wellington thrower, seeded 70, now has a chance of causing a major shock.
The second round concludes on Friday, with new Grand Slam of Darts champion Gerwyn Price and 2018 European Tour event winners Ian White and Jonny Clayton taking to the stage.
You can follow every dart from every session of the World Darts Championships on Sky Sports Darts, check out the full schedule here. You can also stay up to date with all the action behind the scenes by following us @SkySportsDarts and get all the latest news, previews and interviews by heading to www.skysports.com/darts
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