Gerwyn Price, Peter Wright, Michael van Gerwen and James Wade are among the last 16 players remaining in the first Euro Tour event of 2021.
Both Price and Van Gerwen were behind to Richard Veenstra and Daryl Gurney respectively, however the two fought back to come through 6-4 and make the second round.
Wade survived a last leg decider against William O’Connor, while Wright cruised past Florian Hempel.
Elsewhere, day two of the Hungarian Darts Trophy saw teenagers Keane Barry, Lewis Williams and Adam Gawlas also make it through, on a day which saw five seeds go out.
Top four endure mixed day but all go through
Price was 4-2 down to qualifier Veenstra, and in real danger of going out. However, after missing double 12 for a nine darter, settling for an 11 darter instead to go within one, he did not lose a leg, winning the match 6-4 with a 117 outshot. Price faces Damon Heta in round three, after The Heat beat fellow countryman Simon Whitlock 6-4.
MvG also fell behind early to Daryl Gurney, with Superchin going 2-1 in front thanks to an 11 dart break. However, The Green Machine levelled immediately, before three holds of throw saw him on the brink of the match. After Gurney could not find a 125 outshot, Van Gerwen hit double top to secure a 6-4 victory. He takes on Brendan Dolan in the last 16, after the Northern Irishman cruised past Alan Soutar 6-1.
Wade let a 4-1 lead slip against the Irishman O’Connor, before finding a 14 dart leg on throw to win the 11th and final leg. His opponent tomorrow will be Luke Humphries, who beat Devon Petersen 6-2 with a 101.08 average to secure his place in the last 16. Wade beat Humphries in the UK Open Final earlier this year, but Cool Hand got the better of The Machine at the World Matchplay in July.
Wright, the winner of that tournament, cruised past Florian Hempel to reach the last 16. He’ll meet William Borland, who came past crowd favourite Mensur Suljovic 6-5 in the afternoon session.
Teenagers play beyond their years
After winning their matches on day one, the trio of Barry, Williams and Gawlas continued to defy expectations on their Euro Tour debuts.
Barry beat World Grand Prix finalist Dirk van Duijvenbode 6-3 to seal a last 16 place. He will play Michael Smith next, after the Bully Boy comfortably defeated John Michael 6-3 in the final game of the day.
Williams was confident ahead of his game against former Euro Tour winner Krzysztof Ratajski. He was right to be, as the Welshman defeated the Polish Eagle 6-3. He will face Gawlas next, after the former World Youth Championship finalist battled through in a last leg decider against Jonny Clayton, in a game where the Premier League champion finished 5/30 on the doubles.
Elsewhere, Nathan Aspinall hit the highest average of the day, defeating Bradley Brooks 6-1 with a 101.68 average. He takes on Jose De Sousa tomorrow, with the Portuguese Man O’Scores comfortably beating Joe Murnan 6-3.
Finally, top seed Joe Cullen hit a ton plus average to defeat Geert De Vos 6-3. He will face 16th seed Rob Cross in the first game tomorrow afternoon, after Voltage beat Ross Smith 6-4 in the opening match of Saturday’s action.
Hungarian Darts Trophy Day Two Results
Rob Cross 6-4 Ross Smith
Lewis Williams 6-3 Krzysztof Ratajski
Brendan Dolan 6-1 Alan Soutar
James Wade 6-5 William O’Connor
William Borland 6-5 Mensur Suljovic
Luke Humphries 6-2 Devon Petersen
Keane Barry 6-3 Dirk van Duijvenbode
Nathan Aspinall 6-1 Bradley Brooks
Adam Gawlas 6-5 Jonny Clayton
Joe Cullen 6-3 Geert De Vos
Damon Heta 6-4 Simon Whitlock
Jose de Sousa 6-3 Joe Murnan
Michael van Gerwen 6-4 Daryl Gurney
Gerwyn Price 6-4 Richard Veenstra
Peter Wright 6-3 Florian Hempel
Michael Smith 6-3 John Michael
Hungarian Darts Trophy Day Three Schedule
Afternoon Session (1300 local time, 1200 BST)
Round Three (Best of 11 legs)
Joe Cullen v Rob Cross
James Wade v Luke Humphries
Michael van Gerwen v Brendan Dolan
Gerwyn Price v Damon Heta
Jose De Sousa v Nathan Aspinall
Adam Gawlas v Lewis Williams
Peter Wright v William Borland
Michael Smith v Keane Barry
Evening Session (1900 local time, 1800 BST)
Quarter Finals (Best of 11 legs)
Semi Finals (Best of 13 legs)
Final (Best of 15 legs)