Connect with us


World Cup of Darts: Republic of Ireland, Northern Ireland open Group Stage with wins, Australia avoid upset



World Cup of Darts: Republic of Ireland, Northern Ireland open Group Stage with wins, Australia avoid upset

Hosts Germany raised the roof in Frankfurt with a thrilling win over New Zealand as the World Cup of Darts began, with the Republic of Ireland and Northern Ireland winning, and 2022 champions Australia narrowly avoiding a huge upset.

The Group Stage of the 40-nation event saw the opening 12 ties take place on the opening night, with former finalists Belgium, Austria and the Republic of Ireland each in action.

Germany’s Martin Schindler and Gabriel Clemens, though, stole the show on Thursday in a thrilling Group C tie with New Zealand.

Ben Robb and Haupai Puha took out 104 on their way to a 3-2 lead as they threatened an upset against the seventh seeds, only for Germany to force a deciding leg in which Clemens landed a 180 before taking out 124 on the bull.

Australia’s Group D opener with Japan also went to a deciding leg, as debutant Ryusei Azemoto missed four match darts across the game’s final two legs.

Please use Chrome browser for a more accessible video player

Singapore’s Paul Lim opened their World Cup of Darts match against Belgium in fine style as the 70-year-old rolled back the years with a 151 checkout

A miss at the bull for a 4-2 win allowed Damon Heta to force a decider, and three further chances went begging before Whitlock took out 87 to snatch victory to begin Australia’s challenge for a second title in three years.

Belgium’s Dimitri Van den Bergh and Kim Huybrechts defied checkouts of 151 and 110 from Singapore’s 70-year-old veteran Paul Lim before the 2013 finalists took a 4-2 win in their Group A opener, finishing four doubles from seven attempts.

Josh Rock – a European Tour event winner recently – enjoyed a strong World Cup debut alongside Brendan Dolan as Northern Ireland averaged almost 95 in a 4-1 win over South Africa, who now face a crucial Group B clash with Switzerland on Friday afternoon.

Sweden produced an outstanding display in the tournament’s opening fixture, as Jeffrey de Graaf and Oskar Lukasiak averaged 98.56 and hit four doubles from five attempts to whitewash Spain in Group K.

Croatia’s Boris Krcmar and Romeo Grbavac were also in ruthless mood as they denied Malaysia a dart at a double in their Group I opener, averaging over 92 in the process.

Portugal’s Jose de Sousa and debutant David Gomes opened Group L with a win over America, with Jules van Dongen and Danny Lauby now facing a must-win tie with Italy to keep their hopes alive.

Poland opened Group G with a 4-2 defeat of Norway, with Republic of Ireland seeing off Lithuania by the same scoreline in Group E.

France – who were quarter-finalists for the first time last year – overcame Latvia 4-1 as Thibault Tricole and Jacques Labre averaged 95 and took out finishes of 93, 95 and 80 in Group J.

Czechia’s Adam Gawlas and Karel Sedlacek edged out Bahrain 4-3 in their Group H opener, with Iceland awaiting the duo on Friday.

The losing nations from Thursday’s opening games will play the third team from each group in Friday’s afternoon session, before the decisive final group games are played on Friday evening.

Following the conclusion of the round-robin phase, the draw for the last 16 will take place on Friday evening, as England, Wales, Netherlands and Scotland enter the fray in the second round stage.

Ad content | Stream Sky Sports on NOW

Stream Sky Sports live with no contract on a Month or Day membership on NOW. Instant access to live action from the Premier League and EFL, plus darts, cricket, tennis, golf and so much more.

Continue Reading