Luke Humphries produced a sensational performance to knock James Wade out on day two of the Betfred World Matchplay.
In a rematch of the 2021 UK Open Final, Cool Hand Luke got some sort of revenge on The Machine for winning that match, beating the 2007 Matchplay champion 10-3 on his debut at this event..
There were no such problems for Peter Wright, who came through Danny Noppert 10-4 to make the second round.
Elsewhere, a bumper day two at the Betfred World Matchplay saw:
- Rob Cross and Joe Cullen fight through tough matches to earn a spot in the last 16
- Jose De Sousa and Krzysztof Ratajski comfortably win their opening matches
- Michael Smith and Callan Rydz also make round two
Humphries cruises past Wade
Many thought Humphries had a chance to upset Wade on his Blackpool debut. However, few expected the demolition job that Cool Hand Luke did on his opponent.
After Wade missed tops for a 120 to hold in the opening leg, Humphries took out 51 on double eight to break. From there, he did not look back, winning three of the next four legs, and missing the bullseye for a 170 Big Fish checkout in the leg that he did not.
After leading 4-1 at the first interval, Humphries held in the sixth, before a crucial moment came in the seventh leg. The Machine missed six darts to win it, and the former World Youth Champion eventually punished, hitting double eight to move 6-1 ahead.
Roles reversed in the next leg, as Humphries missed two at double 18 to hold. This allowed Wade to find a spectacular 148 finish to get one of the breaks back. This did not stir a comeback from Wade though, as Humphries went 8-2 clear 29 darts later.
Wade then held in the first leg after the final interval, but it only delayed the inevitable. A 15 darter, followed by a 14 dart break on double four, gave Humphries a deserved win, in which he hit eight maximums and averaged 101.1.
Wright produces clinical performance
Peter Wright did not succumb to The Freeze Danny Noppert in the evening session, winning 10-2 to send a message to the rest of the field.
Despite missing two darts, Noppie eventually won the opening leg. However, it would foreshadow what was to come, as he ended the match 2/13 on the outer ring. Wright then levelled even after busting 80, before taking a 4-1 lead 43 darts later.
A third 13 darter in four legs took Snakebite halfway to victory, before a 105 checkout got him a triple break in front. The Freeze responded with a 13 dart break of his own, but it did not spark the comeback.
More missed doubles from the Dutchman allowed Wright a chance to regain the break, and he hit tops to do so. He then followed it up with a spectacular 121 checkout for a 12 dart hold, to take a 8-2 lead at the final interval. A 15 dart break, and a 13 dart hold on double 19, saw Snakebite complete a dominant victory.
Cross and Cullen come through classics
Rob Cross survived an inspired comeback from Ross Smith to make the last 16 of the World Matchplay.
It was Smudger who took an early 3-2 lead, before Cross produced a whitewash second session. Smith only had one shot at a double in the next five legs, as Voltage went 7-3 in front heading into the final session.
However, Smudger would not lie down easily, as he won the next three legs to move within one. However, Cross held firm, finding three holds of throw to eventually get over the line 10-8.
Joe Cullen also won his first round game 10-8, coming through a topsy turvy clash against Chris Dobey.
In a match that featured 13 maximums, both played outstanding throughout the contest. Cullen took an early 3-2 lead, before Dobey responded in the second session to make it 5-5.
Both held and then broke to make it 7-7, before a 45 shot from The Rockstar gave him an 8-7 lead. Dobey had a chance to equalise, but then missed bullseye for a 164. Cullen checked out a 92 to move one away, and despite Hollywood holding, and then leaving double 12 after 12 to send the match into extra time, Cullen held his nerve. He checked out 38 on double eight to win a fantastic game.
What else happened on day two of the Betfred World Matchplay?
Premier League runner up Jose De Sousa produced a sensational display in his round one game against Gabriel Clemens.
The Special One took control of the contest right from the off, whitewashing the first session against The German Giant, then hitting a brilliant 116 checkout to take a 9-1 lead at the second interval.
Clemens won a second leg after the restart, but it only delayed the inevitable, as De Sousa hit double five to take a 10-2 victory.
2019 runner up Michael Smith battled through to make the last 16. He beat Ryan Searle to set up a meeting with De Sousa.
After taking a 3-2 lead in the first session, The Bully Boy turned the screw in the second, winning four out of five legs to take a 7-3 lead. Heavy Metal responded in the third session, cutting the gap to two, but then missed four darts to get the game back on throw.
That seemed to break Searle’s heart, as Smith completed a 10-7 win despite not hitting a single 180.
Krzysztof Ratajski made the second round of the World Matchplay for the third straight year. He hit a 101.6 average, and hit 10/17 on the checkouts, as he defeated Brendan Dolan 10-4.
The Polish Eagle was in control of the match throughout, winning four out of five legs in the second session to go 7-2 in front. Despite a 121 finish on the bull for The History Maker to reduce the gap to 7-3 at the final interval, Ratajski comfortably saw off Dolan to make the last 16.
Callan Rydz won on his Blackpool debut to also make the last 16. In a tight game against fellow North East England player Glen Durrant, where both missed plenty of darts at a double, Rydz whitewashed his opponent in the first session, taking a 5-0 lead into the first interval.
Despite a mini comeback from Duzza to make it 7-3 after the second interval, he could not find the crucial outshots to get truly back in the contest. The Riot eventually won 10-6.
2021 Betfred World Matchplay Day Two Results
Afternoon Session – 13.00 BST
Krzysztof Ratajski 10-4 Brendan Dolan
Callan Rydz 10-6 Glen Durrant
Rob Cross 10-8 Ross Smith
Luke Humphries 10-3 James Wade
Evening Session – 19.30 BST
First round x4
Joe Cullen 10-8 Chris Dobey
Michael Smith 10-7 Ryan Searle
Peter Wright 10-2 Danny Noppert
Jose de Sousa v Gabriel Clemens
Day Three Schedule of Play
Daryl Gurney v Ian White
Nathan Aspinall v Mervyn King
Michael van Gerwen v Damon Heta
Gary Anderson v Stephen Bunting
How can I follow the Betfred World Matchplay?
The Betfred World Matchplay will be live on Sky Sports in the UK. You can also watch it outside the UK via the PDC’s broadcast partners, such as RTL or DAZN.
You can also live stream the event. Find out more here.
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