VAN GERWEN & WHITLOCK THRILL GERMAN CROWD IN HILDESHEIM OPENERS
BIG GUNS Michael van Gerwen and Simon Whitlock turned on the style with first round wins in the German Darts Championship on Friday night, but World Champions Raymond van Barneveld, Adrian Lewis and John Part were all knocked out of the £100,000 event in Hildesheim.
World number two van Gerwen^s bid to win a third European Tour title of the year began with a strong 6-2 defeat of York^s Terry Temple at Halle 39.
Van Gerwen, who lost in the Sydney Darts Masters final last Saturday, averaged just under 100 and took the game^s opening four legs without reply to take command as he moved through to meet Colin Osborne in Saturday^s last 32.
"It was a good performance and I want to try and build on this now over the weekend," said van Gerwen. "I^ve got a big game against Colin Osborne now and I^ll need to prepare myself well for that."
Whitlock, meanwhile, overcame resurgent left-hander Alan Tabern 6-4, hitting five 180s and sealing victory with a key 100 finish as the St Helens ace fought to force a decider.
"It was a really tough match," said Whitlock. "Alan played very well and it took something special to break him at the end, and it^s great to get through."
Five-time World Champion Raymond van Barneveld was edged out on Friday night as he went down 6-5 to Dennis Smith, who now faces Justin Pipe in the second round, after the world number eight^s 6-3 defeat of Belgian qualifier Ronny Huybrechts.
Two-time World Champion Adrian Lewis was eliminated with a 6-2 loss to Vincent van der Voort, with the Dutch ace impressing by averaging 99.66 in a superb performance.
Two other former World Champions, John Part and Mark Webster, were knocked out by Darren Webster and Mark Dudbridge respectively, while but Richie Burnett, Steve Beaton and Jelle Klaasen all progressed to round two.
Burnett and Beaton both landed ten-dart finishes as they defeated James Richardson and John Henderson respectively, while Klaasen edged out Kim Huybrechts 6-5 in a thriller.
Dave Chisnall was another narrow winner as he saw off Dean Winstanley in another 11-leg contest, which saw the pair share 11 maximums and both set up possible nine-darters at one stage, with Winstanley coming from 4-0 down to force a decider.
Chisnall now plays former World Youth Champion Arron Monk, who was a 6-5 winner against John Scott, but the current incumbent of that title, Michael Smith, was knocked out 6-4 by Ronnie Baxter.
Seven-time major finalist Terry Jenkins set up a clash with Klaasen by defeating Austrian qualifier Michael Rasztovits 6-1, while Colin Osborne^s reward for a narrow 6-5 win over Nigel Heydon is a clash with van Gerwen.
World number seven Wes Newton^s 6-2 victory over Austrian Maik Langendorf means that he now plays Kevin Painter, who overcame Kevin Dowling 6-4, while Daryl Gurney came from 3-1 and 5-4 down against Colin Lloyd to progress to a meeting with Baxter.
Three German hopefuls will be present in the second round of a European Tour event for the first time, with Max Hopp overcoming Mark Walsh 6-4, Jyhan Artut seeing off English youngster David Pallett 6-3 and debutant Michael Hurtz winning by the same scoreline against Holland^s Richard van Zijtveld.
Hopp now plays Jamie Caven, who was a 6-2 winner against Darren Johnson, while Artut faces world number six Andy Hamilton, who impressed with a comeback from 2-0 down to defeat Dutch qualifier Jerry Hendriks 6-3.
Hurtz, meanwhile, will now play Peter Wright, after the UK Open semi-finalist shone with a 103 average in a 6-1 defeat of young star Ricky Evans.
Robert Thornton won the battle of former UK Open champions with a 6-3 defeat of Roland Scholten, and he now plays Burnett, while Brendan Dolan won by the same scoreline against Sweden^s Magnus Caris to set up a second round date with van der Voort.
Ian White^s 6-1 win over Matt Clark means that he now plays Steve Brown, who won five successive legs from 2-1 down in his victory over Gary Anderson.
Paul Nicholson was a 6-3 winner against Germany^s Tomas Seyler, and he now faces Northamptonshire^s Matthew Edgar, who impressed with a 6-1 win over UK Masters finalist Stuart Kellett.
Mervyn King also dropped only one leg as he swept past German debuant Adrian Kazimierz, and he will now meet Beaton in the second round.
The second round is split across two sessions at Halle 39 on Saturday, with the third round being played on Sunday afternoon before the event concludes with the quarter-finals, semi-finals and final on Sunday evening.
2013 German Darts Championship
September 6-8, Halle 39, Hildesheim
Friday September 6
Ronnie Baxter 6-4 Michael Smith
Colin Lloyd 5-6 Daryl Gurney
Kim Huybrechts 5-6 Jelle Klaasen
John Part 3-6 Darren Webster
Mark Walsh 4-6 Max Hopp
Dave Chisnall 6-5 Dean Winstanley
Kevin Painter 6-4 Kevin Dowling
Wes Newton 6-2 Maik Langendorf
Colin Osborne 6-5 Nigel Heydon
Steve Beaton 6-2 John Henderson
Arron Monk 6-5 John Scott
Justin Pipe 6-3 Ronny Huybrechts
Stuart Kellett 1-6 Matthew Edgar
Mark Webster 4-6 Mark Dudbridge
Andy Smith 6-2 Michael Barnard
Gary Anderson 2-6 Steve Brown
Mervyn King 6-1 Adrian Kazimierz
Paul Nicholson 6-3 Tomas Seyler
Raymond van Barneveld 5-6 Dennis Smith
Adrian Lewis 2-6 Vincent van der Voort
Andy Hamilton 6-3 Jerry Hendriks
Michael van Gerwen 6-2 Terry Temple
Simon Whitlock 6-4 Alan Tabern
Richard van Zijtveld 3-6 Michael Hurtz
Jyhan Artut 6-3 David Pallett
Terry Jenkins 6-1 Michael Rasztovits
Peter Wright 6-1 Ricky Evans
Jamie Caven 6-2 Darren Johnson
Brendan Dolan 6-3 Magnus Caris
Robert Thornton 6-3 Roland Scholten
Richie Burnett 6-5 James Richardson
Ian White 6-1 Matt Clark
Saturday September 7
Afternoon Session (1pm-5pm)
Jelle Klaasen v Terry Jenkins
Darren Webster v Andy Smith
Jamie Caven v Max Hopp
Mervyn King v Steve Beaton
Ian White v Steve Brown
Ronnie Baxter v Daryl Gurney
Dave Chisnall v Arron Monk
Paul Nicholson v Matthew Edgar
Evening Session (7pm-11pm)
Simon Whitlock v Mark Dudbridge
Wes Newton v Kevin Painter
Dennis Smith v Justin Pipe
Michael van Gerwen v Colin Osborne
Peter Wright v Michael Hurtz
Jyhan Artut v Andy Hamilton
Vincent van der Voort v Brendan Dolan
Robert Thornton v Richie Burnett