Luke Littler continues dream World Championship with victory over Andrew Gilding
The 16 year old has booked his place in the third round
Teenager Luke Littler continued his dream PDC World Championship debut by defeating Andrew Gilding to reach the third round.
The 16-year-old was the toast of Alexandra Palace after beating Christian Kist on Wednesday and he was at it again 24 hours later with a 3-1 success against 20th seed Gilding.
The UK Open champion is 37 years older than Littler but it was the youngster showing the greater composure in the first two sets, with Gilding twice missing a pair of darts at double in the second.
Littler suffered a blip in the third but Gilding was unable to take his opportunities and the teenager clinched a spot in the last 32 against Matt Campbell.
Speaking to Sky Sports, Littler said: “When I went 2-0 up, I lost all my energy. When Andrew got the set back I was just thinking, ‘Just try and win it’, because I don’t want to go 2-2 on this stage. I was nervous as it is. I don’t know how I got over the line but I’ve done it.”
Scott Williams came agonisingly close to a nine-dart finish in a comprehensive 3-0 upset of seventh seed Danny Noppert while German Gabriel Clemens, a semi-finalist last year, defeated Hong Kong’s Man Lok Leung 3-1.
The night finished with Australian 10th seed Damon Heta battling to a 3-1 victory over an out-of-sorts Martin Lukeman.
Earlier, former champion Rob Cross secured his spot in the third round with an unconvincing 3-0 win over Thibault Tricole.
Cross had reached the final of the Grand Slam of Darts last month but was not at his best against an opponent gripped by nerves.
Tricole missed 13 attempts at double during an error-strewn first set and, while he improved to go two legs up in the next set, Cross was able to fight back to show his class with an excellent 114 checkout to move 2-0 up.
It broke the resistance of French thrower and the eighth seed and 2018 winner Cross was able to breeze through the third set to ensure he will return after Christmas.
Zong Ziao Chen started day seven proceedings with a 180 from his first three darts and produced a superb 128 bullseye checkout in the next leg, but Mickey Mansell proved too strong and booked his place in round two.
Mansell won 3-0 and averaged 89.94 to set up a second-round meeting with fellow Northern Irishman Brendan Dolan on Friday.
In the final round one clash of the Championships, debutant Berry van Peer caused an upset to knock out Englishman Luke Woodhouse 3-2.
Woodhouse landed six maximums but lost out to Dutchman Van Peer in a high-quality encounter.
Van Peer was making his first appearance at Alexandra Palace after coming back from struggles with dartitis and was able to regroup impressively after he missed two match darts at 2-1 up before he landed double 10 in the decider to become the last player into round two.
Number 32 seed Madars Razma set up a third-round clash with defending champion Michael Smith after a 3-1 win over Mike de Decker.
Published: by Radio NewsHub