2016 PDC World Darts Championship
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Day 1 darts review: Scots Wright and Anderson smash through

Sam Barnard, Assistant Sports Editor | December 17, 2015

Day one reaction

  • Boulton comes back to beat Laursen in preliminary round
  • Gurney sees off a lacklustre Lewis 3-1
  • Wright smashes through crunch clash of round with Brown
  • Title holder Anderson near-perfect against Boulton
  • Read tomorrow’s afternoon and evening session previews

Wright, Anderson, Gurney all through

Two serious pre-tournament title contenders featured in the opening session of the 2016 PDC World Darts Championship at the Alexandra Palace, Scottish duo Gary Anderson and Peter Wright, and both were on top form as they reached the second round.

Title holder The Flying Scotsman and former finalist Snakebite thrashed respective opponents Andy Boulton and Keegan Brown with matching 3-0 wins, while Northern Ireland’s Daryl Gurney defeated Jamie Lewis to complete a night of Celtic success.

Read on below for a more detailed report by Coral of the four ties on the night, starting with the preliminary battle between Boulton and Per Laursen…

Andy Boulton 2-1 Per Laursen (2-3, 3-1, 3-2)

In a relatively high-profile match-up for a preliminary clash, Laursen and Boulton, who have both reached the last 16 at majors before, were the duo tasked with opening the 2016 World Darts Championship.

2015 William Hill PDC World Championship - Day One - Alexandra Palace

The Dane threw first and also drew first blood to take set one with tops, incidentally one of our top tips for the tournament-winning double.

But it was the younger Boulton, who only switched from the BDO earlier this year, that bit back and from the dead in the deciding set after being 2-0 legs down. Laursen, who hit the tournament’s first 180, will be gutted to have missed darts at doubles to reach the last 64.

Jamie Lewis 1-3 Daryl Gurney (0-3, 3-1, 2-3, 3-1)

After a crowd-raising walk-on, recent Players Championship Finals semi-finalist Gurney started with a bang, whitewashing Lewis to take the first set in which he averaged a whopping 109.

Welshman Lewis, who reached the World Grand Prix quarters in October, gained his composure to level the scores at 1-1, but in the end Dude did enough to book a place in the last 32 for only the second time.

The Northern Irishman will next face defending champion Anderson, who he thrashed 10-4 at the Players Championship Finals, in the second round battle on Boxing Day (Saturday).

Peter Wright 3-0 Keegan Brown (3-0, 3-0, 3-2)

The crunch clash of the night saw one of the world’s best in Wright take on future star Brown in the toughest first round match this year, and it was 2014 runner-up Snakebite who was relieved to come through as he did so in dominating fashion.

Scotsman Wright, in eye-catching Christmas attire, was a man on a mission right from the off as he smashed his way to win the first set without dropping a leg and didn’t even allow Armageddon a single shot at the double.

2015 William Hill PDC World Championship - Day One - Alexandra Palace

It was a similar story in the second, although Brown was allowed two shots at a finish, as once again Snakebite claimed it to nil. Former PDC World Youth champion Armageddon finally claimed his first leg to break Wright early in the third set, but in the end it didn’t matter as the Scot hit a 131 checkout to triumph.

Wright (6/1 title shout) now meets one of Dean Winstanley or Ronny Huybrechts on Monday, December 28th in the second match of the evening session.

Gary Anderson 3-0 Andy Boulton (3-0, 3-0, 3-2)

Dennis Priestley and John Part (twice) are the only two stars to have gone out at the first stage that they entered as defending world champions, but thankfully for Anderson he avoided joining that unwanted group.

Some suggested that Anderson would suffer from nerves, but he quickly dispelled those fears by getting a 180 on his first throw on his way to an 11-darter, followed by another in the next leg.

The Flying Scotsman (6/1 tournament chance) lived up to his nickname, as he easily demolished X-Factor at the loss of just two legs to set up a rematch with earlier victor Gurney.

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Check out more from our darts archive, where you’ll find much more on the 2016 PDC World Darts Championship.

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