Lewis Looking Forward to Lakeside Debut
WDF Antwerp Open winner Jamie Lewis is amongst the Red Dragon field of players at this year’s WDF World Championship, with the Welsh international set to make his debut at the home of World Darts: Lakeside.
“Very much excited to be playing at Lakeside, it’s a venue I have always wanted to play at. I tried the circuit to Lakeside a couple of times before I made the switch over to the PDC and just missed out on both occasions. Was always a regret of mine that I never made Lakeside, so to now be playing in it is amazing and I’m very much looking forward to stepping on that stage.”
The 2023 World Darts Championship begins in December for the first time in a change of schedule from the WDF, after the tournament was played out in April in 2022. Fireball will begin his campaign against Dutch international Jarno Bottenberg in the final match of Sunday’s afternoon session, with the 22-year-old earning his place in Frimley via a qualification tournament held over a year ago.
“I don’t know a lot about Jarno but everyone that has qualified for this competition has done so by doing well on the circuit, so whoever you draw it’s going to be a tough game. I will just be concentrating on myself and making sure I prepare the best I can for this match.”
Jamie knows the difficulty of the task at the 2023 WDF World Darts Championship with a tough field competing in Surrey this year, including defending champion Neil Duff and 3 Time Seniors Major winner Leonard Gates. The Welshman could set up a Second-Round clash with American international Danny Lauby Jr but insists his focus is fully on the First Round.
“I’m not really setting any expectations; my aim is to take one game at a time and go from there. I don’t want to look any further than my first-round match and want to focus fully on getting myself prepared for that game.”
“My practicing has been going really well leading up to this competition. It’s difficult to tell exactly where I’m at as I haven’t played in any ranking events this year but in practice my game is shaping up nicely ahead of this competition.”
Lewis defeated Kay Smeets 7-5 in the Final of the 2022 WDF Antwerp Open last year, dropping just a single leg in wins over Brazilian World Cup representative Diogo Portela and home favourite Andy Baetens in the previous two rounds.
“You can’t look past your next game, and you certainly cannot take anyone for granted. I know if I turn up and play like I can, I have a great chance whoever I come up against.”
The WDF World Championship for the first time ever will be streamed on the WDF YouTube Channel, as well as Ayozat TV. Former MODUS Super Series weekly winner Sebastian Bialecki will open the action this Saturday at Lakeside against English international Scott Marsh.
By Harry Masterson
2023 WDF World Championship Men’s Draw
Andy Baetens (1) v Scott Marsh or Sebastian Bialecki
Gary Stone (16) v Aaron Turner or Ricky Nauman
Barry Copeland (8) v Jonny Tata or Shaun McDonald
Mark Barilli (9) v Patrick Kovacs or Jim Widmayer
James Hurrell (4) v Jordan Brooks or Dennis Nilsson
Alexander Merkx (13) v Danny Porter or Arjan Konterman
Wesley Plaisier (5) v Dave Prins or Reece Colley
Peter Machin (12) v James Richardson or Christian Goedl
Neil Duff (2) v Moreno Blom or Gabor Takacs
Martyn Turner (15) v Liam Maendl-Laurance or Mike Gillet
Chris Landman (7) v Benjamin Pratnemer or Davie Kirwan
Kai Fan Leung (10) v Thomas Junghans or David Pallett
Jelle Klaasen (3) v Laszlo Kadar or Edwin Torbjornsson
Darren Johnson (14) v Anthony Allen or Dennie Olde Kalter
Danny Lauby Jr (6) v Jamie Lewis or Jarno Bottenberg
John Scott (11) v Leonard Gates or Brian Corbett