The first round is far from over. Today, James Wade and Daniel Larsson is in action.
Today we are so ready for another double session. There are several major names in action, including James Wade, who plays the last match of the evening. Before that, we also get Joe Cullen, Kim Huybrechts, Simon Whitlock and Michael Smith in action.
Nathan Aspinall v Geert Nentjes
It has been a pretty nice season for 27-year-old Nathan Aspinall. He has participated in all the Players Championships this season, where he has won one of them. In addition, he has been among the last 32 several times. His Dutch opponent has primarily participated on the Challenge Tour and the Development Tour. Especially the Development Tour has been quite good for Geert Nentjes, where it has become a handful of finals and semifinals. However, Nathan Aspinall is an opponent of a slightly different caliber than those Nentjes have met most of the season.
Jeffrey de Graaf v Noel Malicdem
It has not been a season with great results for Jeffrey de Graaf. Despite participating in Players Championships and a few times on the European Tour, it has not become more than a single semi-final along the way. He has, however, gotten all the options to move on to the second round as he meets Noel Malicdem from the Phillipines. Malicdem has participated on this year’s Asian Tour, qualifying for the World Cup when he finished fourth on the Asian Order of Merit. However, there is no doubt that the Dutchman is the favorite in this match.
Joe Cullen v Brendan Dolan
Joe Cullen has had one of his best seasons this year. He has not won anything but he finished in the quarter-finals at the World Matchplay, a semi-fianl at the European Championship and ‘Last 16’ at the Players Championship Finals. Today he is up against Brendan Dolan, who progressed with a 3-0 victory from the first round. Here he met Chinese Yuanjun Liu. However, Brendan Dolan did not play at a particularly high level, as the Chinese did not challenge him much. Dolan will therefore have to go for a gear or two up if he is to beat Joe Cullen, who has generally started playing at a very nice level.
Kim Huybrechts v Daniel Larsson
Kim Huybrecths has not had the best season. The Belgian, which has previously been significantly higher at the world rankings, can thus boast that he was among the last 16 at this year’s World Matchplay as the best individual achievement. At the World Cup he reached the semi-final with Dimitri van den Bergh. In addition, it has not been more than a handful of quarter-finals and a few semi-finals at Players Championship-events and on the European Tour. He will meet Daniel Larsson, who surprised yesterday when he beat Robert Thornton. The Swede therefore comes with a huge amount of self-confidence and a good performance in the backpack. If it’s enough to beat Belgium, time must show. But it is nok unlikely.
James Wilson v William O’Connor
It has been a fairly good season for James Wilson, who has had a couple of good performances at the major tournaments. The best was temporary when he reached the quarter-finals at this year’s World Grand Prix. He will meet William O’Connor today. Wilson have met him twice before. In these two matches, in which it has been a victory for each. Unlike James Wilson, William O’Connor was in action in the first round. Here he met Yordi Meeuwisse, who he beat 3-0 without performing that great. However, it could look like one of the more even matches of today’s program.
Simon Whitlock v Ryan Joyce
It has been a mixed season for Simon Whitlock. First in the season he attended in the Premier League, in spite of a good start, he ended at an eighth place. After that he has managed to compete in the final at the Danish Darts Open, the International Darts Open and the European Championship. He is of course a favorite in today’s match, where he meets some more inexperienced Ryan Joyce. The Englishman continued from the first round where he beat Anastasia Dobromyslova, but he will have a hard this evening.
Michael Smith v Ron Meulenkamp
Michael Smith has played a really great season. He has been doing well on the European Tour, but he has not won a tournament on the tour. But he has won a Players Championship-event and Shanghai Masters. In addition, he also reached the final at the World Series of Darts Finals, where he made good resistance to James Wade, who won the final by 11-10. He must secure a place in the third round today by beating Ron Meulenkamp. The two have previously met each other six times, where Michael Smith has won four times. On the other hand, Ron Meulenkamp’s two wins have been collected in the last two matches.
James Wade v Seigo Asada
It was probably not many who had seen it coming, that Seigo Asada would beat Krzysztof Ratajski, who otherwise has had a nice season. But the Japanese made it with a victory by 3-2, where he was down by 0-2 when it looked the worst. The Japanese will meet James Wade today, who has been playing his best season for a very long time. James Wade has impressed by winning the European Championship and the World Series of Darts Finals. In addition, he also reached among the last 16 at both the Grand Slam and the Players Championship Finals. It is thus a James Wade in good form who will go into the tournament today.