Michael van Gerwen seems to be able to leave behind his poor run of form of the last months. Against Gabriel Clemens, the number 1 of the world showed the next great performance after his 5-0 victory on the first day of action. MVG never really let the German settle into the game and underlined this with an average of 103.6. This means that van Gerwen is already through to the 2nd round with one more group game to play.
“One must not overestimate anything yet, since these were “only” two victories in the group phase. But I am getting there”, said a beaming MVG after the game.
Clemens will still have the chance to progress to round two when he plays Joe Cullen on Thursday.
Cullen was able to defeat Adam Hunt by the narrow margin of 5:4, which means that “The Hunter” has hardly any chance of getting to the next round. Cullen had already led 4:2 before Hunt fought back with the help of three high finishes (100, 116, 119). But in the end it was the “Rockstar” who scraped through with a sensational 164 finish in the decisive leg.
After setting a new record average for the Grand Slam yesterday, Dimitri Van den Bergh also made it into round 2 today, with an average of 101 being more than enough to clinch a 5:1 victory over Nathan Aspinall. The clarity of the result was also created by the fact that “The Asp” had an off-day on the doubles. Only one out of ten darts found its target. The Englishman will play the decisive game tomorrow against Ricky Evans to get to the last 16.
For his part, Evans was able to defeat BDO World Champion Wayne Warren today to keep his chances for the second round alive. But at first it looked as if the Welshman would succeed in doing so, when he was leading 3:1. But “Rapid” Ricky grabbed four legs in a row and now has his fate in his own hands against Nathan Aspinall.
“I knew I would have been out if I had lost today and I approached the whole thing like a knockout game. That’s exactly how it will continue tomorrow,” Evans told Sky Sports.
World champion Peter Wright can still hope for round 2. Against Ian White, “Snakebite” showed a significantly improved performance compared to yesterday, but had a hard time at first and then changed his darts in the third leg of the match. Afterwards things went better for the Scot, who averaged 106.8 and defeated White 5:3.
“Yesterday none of my darts worked properly, but thank God I found the right ones today,” said the world champion with a wink.
On the last day of Group E, Wright will then have to deal with top of the table Devon Petersen, who defeated Dirk van Duijvenbode 5:2 today. His average was a few points lower than the Dutchman’s, but Petersen’s positive development over the past few months continues.
“I took a lot of advice from the great players of the past and absorbed it like a sponge. Wayne Mardle, Colin Lloyd and Phil Taylor have all played their part in my success,” said the South African.
Two-time world champion Gary Anderson still has to fight for the second round. Already on Monday the Scot had a hard time in his victory over Adam Gawlas. Against Simon Whitlock, an average of around 90 points was not enough today and the “Flying Scotsman” lost clearly 1:5. However, this victory meant that the “Wizard” from Australia qualified for the round of the last sixteen.
“It’s been ages since I was able to beat Gary on TV, so I’m very happy, but of course I know that Gary is stuggling with his knee problems at the moment,” Whitlock said after the victory.
Anderson will have to beat Ryan Searle tomorrow to advance.
Today Searle was able to beat the Czech Adam Gawlas by a narrow margin of 5:4. The Englishman had a great start and was leading by 3:0 before Gawlas could equalize with three legs in a row. At 4:4, the young debutant then missed a dart for the match on double 16 before Searle clinched the victory on double 20 with last dart in hand.
In groups D and F Dave Chisnall and James Wade are safely through to round two. Chisnall won 5-2 against Rob Cross, who started the match well and led 2:0, but then completely lost focus. “Voltage” now has to beat Luke Humphries in the decisive third game, who today played his way to second place with a 5:4 win over Justin Pipe.
James Wade showed a very solid performance in Group F, which earned him a 5:3 victory over Jermaine Wattimena. However, he also benefited from some missed chances on the doubles by the Dutchman.
Wattimena will face Damon Heta in the last game of the group phase. Heta clearly defeated Glen Durrant by 5:1, who again fell far short of his potential with an average of just below 90. The current Premier League Champion is thus already eliminated after only two matches.
The “Iceman” won the Welsh duel in Group G between Gerwyn Price and Jonny Clayton and is now as good as through to the last 16. Both players ended up with an average of less than 90 and Clayton, who had led 3-2, missed some good chances on the doubles.
In the third game of Group G he now has to fight for his spot in the second round with Ryan Joyce, who gave Mikuru Suzuki no chance in his 5:1 win. The Japanese player, who had missed four match darts against Gerwyn Price on Monday, did not really find her top form today. But Joyce played a very solid game and put the BDO Women´s World Champion under constant pressure.
At the end of the second day of the Grand Slam of Darts, Michael Smith confirmed his very good form against Jose de Sousa. With a 102 average and a checkout rate of over 60%, the Bully Boy left the Portuguese only few chances and won by 5:2. De Sousa is now in third place, two legs behind Krzysztof Ratajski.
The Pole had his hands full in his game against Lisa Ashton, who was very close to winning a Grand Slam game as only the second woman after Anastasia Dobromyslova. She took advantage of many missed darts on doubles by Ratajski and led 4:1 before the “Polish Eagle” won 5:4 with a great performance in the last four legs. Ratajski needed an average of over 104 to defeat the “Lancashire Rose”.
The decision will be made in groups B, D, F and H live on Sky Sports, DAZN, Sport1 and RTL7 on Wednesday at 3pm GMT.
2020 Boyle Sports Grand Slam of Darts, Tuesday November 17, 16x 1st round
Ricky Evans 5:3 Wayne Warren (H)
Luke Humphries 5:4 Justin Pipe (D)
Ryan Searle 5:4 Adam Gawlas (B)
Damon Heta 5:1 Glen Durrant (F)
Simon Whitlock 5:1 Gary Anderson (B)
James Wade 5:3 Jermaine Wattimena (F)
Dave Chisnall 5:2 Rob Cross (D)
Dimitri Van den Bergh 5:1 Nathan Aspinall (H)
Krzysztof Ratajski 5:4 Lisa Ashton (C)
Joe Cullen 5:4 Adam Hunt (A)
Ryan Joyce 5:1 Mikuru Suzuki (G)
Peter Wright 5:3 Ian White (E)
Devon Petersen 5:2 Dirk van Duijvenbode (E)
Michael van Gerwen 5:1 Gabriel Clemens (A)
Gerwyn Price 5:3 Jonny Clayton (G)
Michael Smith 5:2 Jose de Sousa (C)
2020 Boyle Sports Grand Slam of Darts, Wednesday November 18, 8x 1st round
Simon Whitlock – Adam Gawlas (B)
Dave Chisnall – Justin Pipe (D)
James Wade – Glen Durrant (F)
Dimitri Van den Bergh – Wayne Warren (H)
Jermaine Wattimena – Damon Heta (F)
Gary Anderson – Ryan Searle (B)
Nathan Aspinall – Ricky Evans (H)
Rob Cross – Luke Humphries (D)