DEBUTANT Benito van de Pas enjoyed his first appearance in the William Hill World Darts Championship as he defeated 25th seed Paul Nicholson 3-2 in an enthralling first round encounter, while Dean Winstanley, Mark Webster and Kevin Painter progressed on Sunday afternoon.

Van de Pas, a 21-year-old Dutchman, earned his place at Alexandra Palace after an impressive first season on the PDC circuit after winning a Tour Card in January, and he took full advantage by earning a huge win over the former quarter-finalist.

Both men started perfectly by hitting 180s on their opening visits to the oche, but it was van de Pas who maintained his form the best, completing a 14-darter with double 16.

Nicholson missed all three shots at doubles during the set, which van de Pas sealed by hitting double eight for a 41 finish.

Former Players Championship Finals winner Nicholson responded well, taking the second set 3-0 after hitting double eight, checking out 116 on double 18 and finishing off with a 38 outshot.

A break of throw in the next put Nicholson ahead, but after narrowly missing a 170 checkout, van de Pas levelled. An 80 finish on tops edged Nicholson in front again and he then edged the set on double two, after the Dutchman missed tops to force a decider.

Two 180s helped van de Pas move ahead in the fourth set, and although he missed three sets darts to allow Nicholson to level, he landed double 16 in the decider to stay in the match.

Van de Pas went 2-0 up in the decider – after Nicholson hit the wrong double – and despite a 180 in the next, Nicholson went out when van de Pas checked out 109 to complete a dream debut.

“That was awesome,” said van de Pas. “I started really well, but in the second and the third set I wasn’t playing very well so just had to stay in it.

“I’ve played really well on the floor all season and played well in some Players Championship events, and what I learnt there is that you just have to fight and fight to get anything.

“I played well in the first set and then Paul came back, so then I just had to fight as hard as I could to get through. That 109 at the end went in and it was amazing.

“I’m going back home tonight then I’ll come back to play in Saturday against Dave Chisnall or Ryan De Vreede – I would like to play against Ryan because I’ve been travelling with him the whole year so it’d be nice to play him here.”

Mark Webster earned a second round showdown with Phil Taylor with a hard-fought 3-1 victory over fellow left-hander Ron Meulenkamp.

The Welshman started off like a train with two ton-plus finishes in the opening set, but hitting doubles would become a huge problem for both men as they combined to miss 64 darts at doubles, with the majority coming in the game’s fourth set.

Two-time Alexandra Palace semi-finalist Webster lost the opening leg, but then took out 104 in the second and 107 in the fourth to clinch the set.

Webster hit a 12-darter in the first leg of the second set after hitting a 180 and an 81 outshot, but Meulenkamp stayed with him this time to drag it to 2-2, and although Webster landed the wrong double once he was let off the hook and returned to hit double five.

Debutant Meulenkamp responded in the next set by starting off with a 180 in the first leg, and he went on to take three straight legs as the cracks started to appear in Webster’s finishing.

A 180 from Webster was a high quality start to the fourth set. He then moved 2-1 ahead before an amazing final leg saw both players miss double after double, until with the 58th dart of the leg, Webster finally hit double one to book a second round tie with Taylor.

“The first two sets were great and I was thinking I was playing well, I felt great up there,” said Webster. “I won’t look at stats, averages or missed doubles, it’s the winning that counts.

“I’ve had a tough time for the last few years really and it’s just great to get the job done. I’m a million miles from where I want to be but it’s going to take time and I just have to be patient and work hard, and I am working hard.

“I’m up for playing Phil, for me he’s still the best there is, but I won’t be scared of him. I’m not trying to rub him up the wrong way or anything like that but I have beaten him before here, not many other people have.

“Every time you play Phil you have to see it as a massive opportunity to go up there and show what you can do and that’s exactly how I’ll approach it.”

Dean Winstanley won a high-quality contest with Wayne Jones 3-2 to move into the second round.

Winstanley hit seven 180s and averaged 93.66 while also hitting three ton-plus finishes, but all that was only just enough to squeeze by Jones, who averaged even higher at 94 and had four 180s of his own.

Winstanley kicked off with a 136 finish in the first leg to go ahead, and hit a 180 in the third to take the set 3-0 and enjoy the perfect start.

A 116 finish started the second set brilliantly for Winstanley as well, and he followed that up with another 136 checkout in the fourth leg, but that was only good enough to level matters, while Jones withstood a 180 from his opponent in the decider to level the match.

Jones really hit his stride in the third set, as he came from a leg down to finish legs of 14, 11 and 15 darts in a fine set as he moved 2-1 up in the game.

Winstanley responded to win the fourth 3-1, finishing double seven and 74 to lead before posting double ten to send the contest into a deciding fifth set.

Winstanley hit 61 to start the final set, and though Jones levelled he took out 24 and 25 as he sealed his place in the second round against Darren Webster.

“That was a really tiring game, I just couldn’t shake Wayne off and every time I tried to do it he just came coming back at me and back at me,” said Winstanley.

“I thought we both played well, but I really wanted that, I’ve been in a sudden death game before and there’s no way I wanted to play in one again!”

Winstanley added: “I’ve never beaten Darren and he’s breaking my heart – he’s like a Yorkshire terrier, but we’ll see how it is when we get up to play here. This is my stage not his!”

Kevin Painter overcame a minor scare from Russian qualifier Boris Koltsov to make it into the second round of the William Hill World Darts Championship with a 3-1 victory.

Painter made a comfortable start to his game with the Russian – who had earlier won his preliminary round match against Haruki Muramatsu 4-2 – taking the first three legs, including a 110 finish in the second leg and a 52 outshot to clinch it.

Koltsov then produced an inspired second set, with the Russian taking the first leg, before breaking the throw with a double 16 after Painter had missed doubles himself.

In his best leg of the match, Koltsov then hit two 180s and managed to land a double nine to claim a 3-0 set and level the match.

Painter, though, responded by taking the next six legs on the spin, including a double 16 and a brilliant 138 outshot that claimed the third set.

The fourth set went the same way, with Painter back on song with his finishing when taking out 78 and 110 before completing the job for a second round tie with another international qualifier, Cristo Reyes from Spain.

In the evening session, number six seed James Wade, a three-time World Championship semi-finalist, takes on Jamie Lewis in the evening session, while world number eight Dave Chisnall takes on Ryan De Vreede, with Kim Huybrechts and Ian White also in action.

WILLIAM HILL WORLD DARTS CHAMPIONSHIP RESULTS

Preliminary & First Rounds
Sunday December 21
Afternoon Session
Paul Nicholson (25) 2-3 Benito van de Pas
Boris Koltsov 4-2 Haruki Muramatsu (P)
Mark Webster (31) 3-1 Ron Meulenkamp
Dean Winstanley (26) 3-2 Wayne Jones
Kevin Painter (20) 3-1 Boris Koltsov

Evening Session (7pm)
Kim Huybrechts (18) v Michael Mansell
Jani Haavisto v John Michael (P)
Dave Chisnall (8) v Ryan De Vreede
James Wade (6) v Jamie Lewis
Ian White (15) v Jani Haavisto/John Michael

MATCH INFORMATION
AFTERNOON SESSION
PAUL NICHOLSON 2-3 BENITO VAN DE PAS
(0-3, 3-0, 3-1, 2-3, 0-3)

DEBUTANT Benito van de Pas enjoyed his first appearance in the William Hill World Darts Championship as he defeated 25th seed Paul Nicholson 3-2 in an enthralling first round encounter, while Dean Winstanley, Mark Webster and Kevin Painter progressed on Sunday afternoon.

Van de Pas, a 21-year-old Dutchman, earned his place at Alexandra Palace after an impressive first season on the PDC circuit after winning a Tour Card in January, and he took full advantage by earning a huge win over the former quarter-finalist.

Both men started perfectly by hitting 180s on their opening visits to the oche, but it was van de Pas who maintained his form the best, completing a 14-darter with double 16.

Nicholson missed all three shots at doubles during the set, which van de Pas sealed by hitting double eight for a 41 finish.

Former Players Championship Finals winner Nicholson responded well, taking the second set 3-0 after hitting double eight, checking out 116 on double 18 and finishing off with a 38 outshot.

A break of throw in the next put Nicholson ahead, but after narrowly missing a 170 checkout, van de Pas levelled. An 80 finish on tops edged Nicholson in front again and he then edged the set on double two, after the Dutchman missed tops to force a decider.

Two 180s helped van de Pas move ahead in the fourth set, and although he missed three sets darts to allow Nicholson to level, he landed double 16 in the decider to stay in the match.

Van de Pas went 2-0 up in the decider – after Nicholson hit the wrong double – and despite a 180 in the next, Nicholson went out when van de Pas checked out 109 to complete a dream debut.

“That was awesome,” said van de Pas. “I started really well, but in the second and the third set I wasn’t playing very well so just had to stay in it.

“I’ve played really well on the floor all season and played well in some Players Championship events, and what I learnt there is that you just have to fight and fight to get anything.

“I played well in the first set and then Paul came back, so then I just had to fight as hard as I could to get through. That 109 at the end went in and it was amazing.

“I’m going back home tonight then I’ll come back to play in Saturday against Dave Chisnall or Ryan De Vreede – I would like to play against Ryan because I’ve been travelling with him the whole year so it’d be nice to play him here.”

First Set 0-3 – Cracking start with both men firing in 180s, but it’s van de Pas who draws first blood with double 16 taking out the first leg in 14 darts. He takes the second and third as well, with a 41 finish giving him the set with a 93.94 average.
Second Set 3-0 – Reply in kind from Nicholson, who just misses 134 but returns to finish off 32. Then he takes out 116 on double 18 and mops up 38 to finish off the set.
Third Set 3-1 – Nicholson breaks the throw in the first leg to get off to a great start, but van de Pas levels after almost taking out 170. 80 checkout on tops puts Nicholson ahead and after missing five set darts he takes it.
Fourth Set 2-3 – Two 180s for van de Pas but they’re not enough to win him the set. He also misses three set darts to let Nicholson level. With Nicholson a leg away from the match he can’t grab the chance and van de Pas hits double 16 to stay in the match.
Fifth Set 0-3 – It’s all van de Pas after a great start to the set. Nicholson hits the wrong double as he also loses the second despite 180. And despite a 180 again in thr third, van de Pas hits 109 to win the match.

BORIS KOLTSOV 4-2 HARUKI MURAMATSU (P)

Boris Koltsov secured a place in the first round proper with a 4-2 victory over Japan’s Haruki Muramatsu.

Koltsov went behind in the opening leg, but hit back with three on the spin to move to the brink of the first round, taking out 60 and then hitting double eight.

He wasted two darts for the match in the fifth leg, and Muramatsu cleaned up 56 to keep his hopes alive.

Another match dart went astray for Koltsov, but Muramatsu could not take advantage this time as he missed four darts for the leg, and Koltsov made no mistake next time around to progress to a meeting with Kevin Painter.

MARK WEBSTER 3-1 RON MEULENKAMP
(3-1, 3-2, 0-3, 3-1)

The Welshman started off like a train with two ton-plus finishes in the opening set, but hitting doubles would become a huge problem for both men as they combined to miss 64 darts at doubles, with the majority coming in the game’s fourth set.

Two-time Alexandra Palace semi-finalist Webster lost the opening leg, but then took out 104 in the second and 107 in the fourth to clinch the set.

Webster hit a 12-darter in the first leg of the second set after hitting a 180 and an 81 outshot, but Meulenkamp stayed with him this time to drag it to 2-2, and although Webster landed the wrong double once he was let off the hook and returned to hit double five.

Debutant Meulenkamp responded in the next set by starting off with a 180 in the first leg, and he went on to take three straight legs as the cracks started to appear in Webster’s finishing.

A 180 from Webster was a high quality start to the fourth set. He then moved 2-1 ahead before an amazing final leg saw both players miss double after double, until with the 58th dart of the leg, Webster finally hit double one to book a second round tie with Taylor.

“The first two sets were great and I was thinking I was playing well, I felt great up there,” said Webster. “I won’t look at stats, averages or missed doubles, it’s the winning that counts.

“I’ve had a tough time for the last few years really and it’s just great to get the job done. I’m a million miles from where I want to be but it’s going to take time and I just have to be patient and work hard, and I am working hard.

“I’m up for playing Phil, for me he’s still the best there is, but I won’t be scared of him. I’m not trying to rub him up the wrong way or anything like that but I have beaten him before here, not many other people have.

“Every time you play Phil you have to see it as a massive opportunity to go up there and show what you can do and that’s exactly how I’ll approach it.”

Match Information
First Set 3-1 – Meulenkamp takes the opening leg but Webster shows some real quality in his response, taking out finishes of 104 and then 107 in the final leg.
Second Set 3-2 – Webster kicks off with a 12-darter with two 180s and an 81 finish, but misses tops in the next to let Meulenkamp hit 60. 72 on tops puts Webster ahead again and desipte hitting the wrong double in the fifth he returns for double five.
Third Set 0-3 – Meulenkamp hits 180 en route to grabbing the opener, and double 12 gets the second after three Webster misses at double 10.
Fourth Set 3-1 – Incredible finish to the match as Webster finally edges a dramatic fourth leg to the set on double one – as both miss a host of doubles.

DEAN WINSTANLEY 3-2 WAYNE JONES
(3-0, 2-3, 1-3, 3-1, 3-1)

Winstanley hit seven 180s and averaged 93.66 while also hitting three ton-plus finishes, but all that was only just enough to squeeze by Jones, who averaged even higher at 94 and had four 180s of his own.

Winstanley kicked off with a 136 finish in the first leg to go ahead, and hit a 180 in the third to take the set 3-0 and enjoy the perfect start.

A 116 finish started the second set brilliantly for Winstanley as well, and he followed that up with another 136 checkout in the fourth leg, but that was only good enough to level matters, while Jones withstood a 180 from his opponent in the decider to level the match.

Jones really hit his stride in the third set, as he came from a leg down to finish legs of 14, 11 and 15 darts in a fine set as he moved 2-1 up in the game.

Winstanley responded to win the fourth 3-1, finishing double seven and 74 to lead before posting double ten to send the contest into a deciding fifth set.

Winstanley hit 61 to start the final set, and though Jones levelled he took out 24 and 25 as he sealed his place in the second round against Darren Webster.

“That was a really tiring game, I just couldn’t shake Wayne off and every time I tried to do it he just came coming back at me and back at me,” said Winstanley.

“I thought we both played well, but I really wanted that, I’ve been in a sudden death game before and there’s no way I wanted to play in one again!”

Winstanley added: “I’ve never beaten Darren and he’s breaking my heart – he’s like a Yorkshire terrier, but we’ll see how it is when we get up to play here. This is my stage not his!”

Match Information
First Set 3-0 – Wonderful opening set from Winstanley, taking out 136 in the very first leg. Follows up with a 76 and averages over 100 in taking the set.
Second Set 2-3 – A 116 puts Winstanley ahead, Jones replies with two legs on the spin with solid scoring, and a 68 outshot. Now another 136 from Winstanley but Jones comes again and wins the set.
Third Set 1-3 – A 12-darter puts Jones 2-1 ahead after both men hit 180s in the same leg. Winstanley hits another 180 in the next but Jones takes out 68 to win the set.
Fourth Set 3-1 – A Winstanley break to start, then a 74 checkout after another 180. Jones makes it 2-1 after Winstanley misses two for the set, but he makes amends in the next.
Fifth Set 3-1 – Winstanley strikes first in the decider with 61 checkout. Jones nips in for double 12 but Winstanley, after missing the bull for the match hits double eight after threemissed darts by Jones.

KEVIN PAINTER 3-1 BORIS KOLTSOV
(3-0, 0-3, 3-0, 3-0)

Painter made a comfortable start to his game with the Russian – who had earlier won his preliminary round match against Haruki Muramatsu 4-2 – taking the first three legs, including a 110 finish in the second leg and a 52 outshot to clinch it.

Koltsov then produced an inspired second set, with the Russian taking the first leg, before breaking the throw with a double 16 after Painter had missed doubles himself.

In his best leg of the match, Koltsov then hit two 180s and managed to land a double nine to claim a 3-0 set and level the match.

Painter, though, responded by taking the next six legs on the spin, including a double 16 and a brilliant 138 outshot that claimed the third set.

The fourth set went the same way, with Painter back on song with his finishing when taking out 78 and 110 before completing the job for a second round tie with another international qualifier, Cristo Reyes from Spain.

Match Information
First Set 3-0 – Easy start for Painter as he would have hoped for. Takes out 110 in the second and 52 in the third.
Second Set 0-3 – Big surprise from the Russian and Koltsov sweeps the set, breaking a wasteful Painter in the second leg, before hitting two 180s in the third leg.
Third Set 3-0 – Painter recovers in good fashion with a clean sweep.in the set – taking out 57 before a brilliant 138 to wrap it up.
Fourth Set 3-0 – Painter clinches it with another sweeped set. More good finishing, this time a 78 and a 110 before easing over the line in comfort.