World Matchplay Darts – Day Three Preview

The first round at the World Matchplay concludes this evening when four players will progress to join the twelve already through to the Last 16.

The two stand out games from Sunday were Ian White vs Stephen Bunting and James Wade vs Kyle Anderson. Hopefully we will see some more of the same tonight.

Here are my previews to guide you through the action.

Thornton vs Brown

Robert Thornton
• Has never won a match at the World Matchplay from 5 previous appearances, he was beaten 10-0 twice in a row (Anderson 2010 & Adrian Lewis 2011)
• Since winning the UK Open in 2012 he has never been past the quarter-final of a major TV ranking event.
• Winner of the most recent ranking tournament prior to this one, when he won the European Darts Open, beating Whitlock, Klaasen, Wade and Kim Huybrechts on the way.

Keegan Brown
• Won his first senior PDC ranking title in May at a Players Championship event, he defeated Peter Wright in the quarter-finals and won 6-3 against Adrian Lewis in the final.
• His best performance on TV was at the Grand Slam of Darts last November when he defeated Adrian Lewis in a group match, van Barneveld in the last 16 and narrowly lost 16-14 to Chisnall in the quarter-finals a match in which he led 12-6.
• Won the last meeting between the pair when he came out on top 6-5 in a last leg decider last September.

Chisnall vs Caven

Dave Chisnall
• Chisnall has reached the quarter-finals in each of the last two years at the Matchplay, losing to van Gerwen both times (16-11 in 2013, 16-12 in 2014). Prior to this he had lost in the first round in his first two appearances in Blackpool.
• Reached consecutive pro tour ranking event finals in May, losing the first to Joe Murnan after beating MVG in the semi-final and the following week he defeated Ian White 6-1 to win the final.
• Had a very impressive Premier League campaign, finishing 2nd in the table and just losing on a deciding leg in the semi-final against Gary Anderson who went on to win the final.

Jamie Caven
• Making his sixth appearance at the World Matchplay, he has only gone past the first round of one occasion in 2013 when he defeated Wes Newton 10-8 before losing in the Last 16 to today’s opponent Dave Chisnall (13-10).
• Caven has a 7-5 win record against Chisnall but he has lost three of their last four meetings since beating Chisnall 6-0 at the European Championship in 2013.
• A regular in TV ranking tournaments, this is Caven’s 16th consecutive appearance in a PDC major TV ranking tournament.

Taylor vs Henderson

Phil Taylor
• The only player to have competed at every World Matchplay tournament since the first one in 1994. He has won the tournament 15 times and is looking for an eighth win in a row.
• Taylor has never lost a first round match at the World Matchplay in the previous 21 times he has competed in the tournament.
• The 2014 World Matchplay is the only Major TV ranking event Taylor has won from the last nine played. Though he has of course won the Grand Slam and World Cup during this period.

John Henderson
• Competing in his second World Matchplay, he returns for the first time since his debut 2011 when he reached the Last 16 defeating Colin Lloyd before losing 13-11 to Andy Hamilton.
• His best performance on tour this season was reaching the final of the German Darts Masters in April where he lost a last leg decider to Michael van Gerwen. Amongst his victims on the way to the final were Michael Smith, Brendan Dolan and Adrian Lewis.
• His last win against a top 16 player in a TV major ranking tournament was at the 2014 World Championships when he defeated Dave Chisnall in the 1st round.

van Barneveld vs Hamilton

Raymond van Barneveld
• RVB has never lost in the 1st Round of the World Matchplay, playing every tournament since he made his debut at the event in 2007. His best performance was runner-up to Phil Taylor in 2010.
• Although van Barneveld has won the Grand Slam, Premier League and World Cup in recent years he hasn’t won a TV major ranking tournament since the Las Vegas Desert Classic in 2007.
• Van Barneveld has played Hamilton 8 times in TV major ranking tournaments and has won 7 of them. The only defeat came in their most recent TV meeting when Hamilton won 10-9 in the 2013 UK Open semi-final.

Andy Hamilton
• This is Hamilton’s 10th consecutive appearance at the World Matchplay. He has reached the semi-finals on two occasions (his debut 2006 & 2011). The last time he lost in the 1st round was in 2010 when he lost to RVB’s fellow countryman Co Stompe 12-10.
• Hamilton reached the quarter-finals or better in 10 consecutive TV major ranking tournaments in 2012 and 2013. Since then he has only reached the last 16 twice in his last 8 TV major ranking events.
• Performances from Hamilton this season on tour have not been too good, his best showing is one quarter-final appearance in a UK Open qualifier back in February.

Enjoy the darts!

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