Vincent Van Der Voort kicked off the opening session with the 6-1 demolition of Justin Pipe. The contrast in throwing styles worked in favour of the big Dutchman as he cruised into the next round. Benito Van de Pas joined his Dutch compatriot following a 6-4 over Stephen Bunting. The Bullet had scrapped his way back into contention from 5-0 down but didn’t have enough steam to complete the comeback. Jelle Klaasen failed to make it three in a row as he crashed out at the hands of Gerwyn Price. The cobra had recently reached the quarter finals of the World Grand Prix and his career seemed to be in resurgence, but he was quickly halted by the big Welshman.
Alan Norris joined the Destroyer in the second round despite hitting a disastrous two out of 18 darts in the opening four legs. Norris resurrected his chances with much improved finishing, dumping out veteran Terry Jenkins 6-3.
2010 finalist Mervyn King bowed out earl on as Mensur Suljovic continued his scintillating form on television events. The King seemed to struggling with an injury as the methodical Austrian raced into a 3-0 lead. Suljovic would continue to dominate eventually taking the match 6-1.
Much like the Norris – Jenkins match earlier in the afternoon, Brendan Dolan struggled on the doubles, missing 19 of 21 attempts. Simon Whitlock seems to have regained some of that spark that sent fans wild when he first joined the PDC. The Aussie’s victory sets up a rare second round match following the Wizards dismal year on the pro tour.
Jamie Caven returned to the big stage to face an in form and fearless Michael Smith. The man from St Helen’s has won three pro tour events this season and will look forward to the world rankings being reset this January as he continues his surge towards the elite. A comprehensive and predictable win over Jabba only enhances his ever growing reputation. He will now meet Mensur Suljovic in tomorrows second round matches.
Daryl Gurney produced arguably the darts of the day, racing into 4-1 and average 109 at the interval. Huybrechts had also gone within two darts of a spectacular nine dart finish, getting a packed out Minehead off their feet. Gurney, who made his TV debut back in October in front of a raucous home crowd at the Grand Prix showed calmness under pressure, powering home an outstanding 62 victory.
Justin Pipe (16) 1-6 Vincent van der Voort (17)
Terry Jenkins (11) 3-6 Alan Norris (22)
Jelle Klaasen (10) 4-6 Gerwyn Price (23)
Benito van de Pas (13) 6-4 Stephen Bunting (20)
Mensur Suljovic (15) 6-1 Mervyn King (18)
Brendan Dolan (14) 2-6 Simon Whitlock (19)
Michael Smith (2) 6-3 Jamie Caven (31)
Kim Huybrechts (5) 2-6 Daryl Gurney (28)