Anderson Delights Blackpool Crowd

Gary Anderson punished a struggling Dave Chisnall to progress to the Second Round.

Gerwyn Price eased into next round but we did see a World Champion depart with Cross being defeated by Gurney.

The biggest darting party of the summer is off and running as the PDC made their annual pilgrimage to the North West coast. The 2023 Betfred World Matchplay got underway in the beautiful winter gardens, delivering an evening of fantastic action.

Anderson To Face Gurney

Gary Anderson stumbled into the next round with a 10- over Dave Chisnall. Gary Anderson took the early lead winning the first couple of legs before Chizzy reeled off three of his own.

Gary Anderson found another gear after the break and won all five legs including a beautiful set up in the 10th with a 180 followed by 165 before sealing the leg and control in this tie.

Anderson sets up Second Round game with Gurney

The lead was enough for Gary, in a game that was highly anticipated was won by Gary Anderson with a 94 average.

Former World Champion Out in Round One

World number 5 Rob Cross became the first of the seeded players to exit the 2023 Betfred World matchplay. The 2019 champion suffered his first ever first round defeat at the Winter Gardens losing 12-10 to Daryl Gurney. Gurney started the match well, breaking the Cross throw in the opening leg, setting the tone for things to come. Super Chin kicked on from this and a couple of ton plus checkouts helped him to extend his lead to 4-0 with Cross having to checkout 94 to avoid going into the break without a leg on the board. Cross looked to be galvanised in the second session and the two players looked much more even as they exchanged breaks of throw and by the second break Voltage had pegged the Northern Irishman back to just a two leg lead.

By the time the match entered it’s third session, Cross had upped his average over 100 and was on the march. levelling the game up at 6-6 and then reeling in 170 for 7-7 leaving the match hanging in the balance. Cross took the lead in the match for the first time at 10-9 putting the former champion just one leg away from victory. Gurney however was evidently not shaken by the comeback and help his resolve to battle his way back ahead and then close the match out in the additional legs needed to separate these two players.


Price Progresses With A Comfortable Win

Last year’s beaten finalist Gerywn Price got his 2023 Betfred World Matchplay campaign off to a winning start with a comfortable 10-3 win over Stephen Bunting. The Welshman had a wobbly start losing the first two legs but after fighting his way back into the game and levelling up 3-3 the momentum swung completely away from Bunting. Price then put together a 7 leg winning streak to cruise to victory and set up a second round meeting with Joe Cullen.

Price was not at his best today and benefited from a frustrated Bunting allowing him too many opportunities and not capitalising on his mistakes. The Iceman will need to raise his game if he is to repeat his 2022 run or even go one further…

Cullen Made To Work Hard For Victory

In the opening game of the 2023 Betfred World Matchplay, Joe Cullen took on Belgian world number 42 Mike de Decker. Cullen looked every bit the pre match favourite in the first session. The Rockstar lead 4-1 at the first break with the highlight of the session undoubtable a 143 hold of throw in the second leg.

After the break de Decker upped the level making it a far more competitive game. A superb 164 checkout from the Belgian pulled him back to within one leg at 4-3. Cullen however reacted well to this and managed to rattle off four legs on the spin, extending his lead to 8-3. De Decker refused to lay down once more and put together a three leg run himself, capitalising on the Rockstar’s missed doubles.

In the end, the scoring of Cullen was too much and the 2022 Masters champion booked his place in the last 16 with a 120 checkout for a 10-7 victory.

2023 Betfred World Matchplay Day One

Saturday July 15 (1900 BST)

4x First Round

Joe Cullen 10-7 Mike De Decker

Daryl Gurney 12-10 Rob Cross

Gerwyn Price 10-3 Stephen Bunting

Gary Anderson 10-6 Dave Chisnall