Webster claims shock Whitlock win


Published: Sunday 21st December 2014 by The News Editor

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Darren Webster dumped seventh seed Simon Whitlock out of the PDC World Championship with a shock 3-1 first-round victory at Alexandra Palace on Saturday.

Webster made a fantastic start to the match and did not drop a leg on his way to winning the first set as an out-of-sorts Whitlock struggled to get a foothold in the game.

Whitlock cut a relieved figure when he squared the match at 1-1 but that was as good as it got for the 2010 finalist.

Webster upped his game to take the third and fourth sets and averaged more than 94 points to his Australian opponent’s 87 for the match.

“Simon wasn’t at his best but I just tried to keep concentration today,” a delighted Webster told Sky Sports after securing his place in the next round.

“I was determined to try to win one for a change. I am so happy. Unbelievable.”

Gary Anderson avoided Whitlock’s fate by sealing a 3-1 triumph against Scott Kirchner.

American Kirchner had earlier overcome New Zealander Mark McGrath to earn his first-round encounter against number four seed and 2011 finalist Anderson.

The Flying Scotsman, who beat Adrian Lewis to win the Players Championship last month, did not look like his usual relaxed self early on but nevertheless took the first set.

Kirchner responded superbly by winning three unanswered legs to draw level at 1-1 before Anderson’s third-set win set him up and the 43-year-old sealed the victory after racing into the lead – after losing the first leg to his opponent – in the fourth to progress.

Robert Thornton was in impressive form as he booked his place in the next round with a 3-0 victory over Andrew Gilding.

The 47-year-old Scot lost just two legs in the comprehensive victory to set up a second-round showdown against Ronnie Baxter.

Thornton hit two 180s in the first set and used his last dart on all three finishes to take the lead, with Gilding pinching just the one leg in reply.

Thornton grabbed another pair of maximums on his way to second-set victory, before upping his game to clinch the third set and the match by hitting tops in the first, then pulling out a superb 144 outshot and wrapping it up in the next to seal a 97.6 average.

Another significant upset of the first round saw Lawrence Ryder edge to a 3-2 victory over Justin Pipe.

Australian Ryder fought back from 2-1 down to clinch victory courtesy of a strong finish that saw him win six straight legs to stun 17th seed Pipe.

Ryder will face Terry Jenkins in the second round after he was a 3-1 victor against John Weber.

Jenkins, a semi-finalist in 2011, was in control from the outset with no fewer than five 180s accrued in an extremely comfortable victory against his Australian opponent.

Daryl Gurney fought back from 3-0 down to claim a 4-3 preliminary-round victory against Scott Mackenzie, but he was then outclassed by Baxter who moved into the second round with a 3-1 win against the Northern Irishman.

Gurney pushed his opponent throughout but Baxter demonstrated his class when it mattered and sealed victory with a superb 12-darter including a 180 and a 104 finish.

Ronny Huybrechts won all but two legs as he swept Andy Smith aside 3-0 to seal his progression to the next round.

Missed doubles cost Smith dearly, with the Englishman missing four darts at doubles in the opening set, and two more at the start of the second as Huybrechts won the first six legs to set up a comfortable victory.

Kyle Anderson also won through to the next round courtesy of a 3-0 triumph against Steve Beaton – who beat him by the same scoreline in the first round of last year’s tournament.

Anderson managed three 180s during the match, and the 27-year-old Australian wrapped up victory with a double five to set up a second-round encounter against Andy Hamilton.

Published: Sunday 21st December 2014 by The News Editor

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