FORMER semi-finalist Dennis Smith was among the eight players to qualify for the Ladbrokes.com World Darts Championship at the PDPA Qualifiers on Saturday.

Smith, who reached the last four in the 2000 World Championship, earned his place at Alexandra Palace later in December with a 5-3 victory over Dave Smith in their decisive game of the knockout qualifiers.

Smith had earlier defeated Michael Smith, Stuart Stubbs and Paul Knighton to ensure his 13th World Championship appearance and his first since the 2006 event.

John MaGowan, a 67-year-old from Northern Ireland, ensured his second World Championship appearance with a 5-0 whitewash of Gary Blades in his decisive match, having also defeated former qualifiers Alan Caves and Paul Williams in the event.

Those two were the only players from the eight qualifiers who have previously played in the World Championship, with a host of new faces winning through at the Telford International Centre.

Brendan Dolan, who has previous experience of the big stage from the UK Open and World Grand Prix, joined fellow countryman MaGowan in the World Championship after a narrow victory over Lancashire’s Louis Blundell in his decider.

Newcastle’s Mark Stephenson, Somerset’s Steve Grubb, Stourbridge’s Nick Fullwell and Sussex’s Tony Ayres will make their World Championship debuts after coming through the qualifier.

Grubb, a publican from Radstock, came from 4-2 down against American Isen Veljic to win his place in the tournament, while Fullwell was another final-leg winner, against Ken Dobson.

Essex postman Michael Barnard, who has been on the PDC circuit since 2004, defeated experienced professional Dave Askew to earn his first World Championship appearance, having also defeated America’s John Kuczynski and number 13 seed Steve Brown on the day.

Top seed Mick McGowan suffered disappointment with a third round defeat to Billingshurst-based Ayres, while America’s UK Open runner-up Gary Mawson was a first round casualty against Mark Jodrill.

Ladbrokes.com World Darts Championship PDPA Qualifiers
Preliminary Round
Tony Blundell 5-1 Jon Archer
Tony Ayres 5-2 Aaron Turner
Jim Young 5-3 James Keogh
Simon Burt 5-0 Jim Leighton
Stephen Hardy 5-4 Ian Critchett
Scott Kirchner 5-3 Colin McGarry
Gary Noonan 5-2 Jimmy Dunlop
Arron Monk 5-1 Mick Savvery
Patrick Moylan 5-1 Tom Martin
Stuart Dutton 5-1 Lee Palfreyman
John Quantock 5-3 Paul Cooper
Shane Cox 5-1 Lee White
Bob Crawley 5-2 Kevin Harris
Joe Cullen 5-0 Steve Watts
David Platt 5-0 Shayne Burgess
Joey Palfreyman 5-0 Nigel Peden
Richard McLaughlin 5-1 Adrian Linfield
Alan Green 5-4 Frazer Hill
Dave Honey 5-3 Carl Minter
Jann Hoffman 5-3 Alan Priestley
Sean Dowling 5-3 Erwin Extercatte
John Kuczynski 5-3 Steve Cupitt
Jimmy Mann 5-1 Ian Jopling
Steve Grubb 5-1 Mickey Booth
Chris Cooper 5-0 Paul Dillon
Isen Veljic 5-0 Gary Storey
Russell Mason 5-3 Peter Edmonds
Chris White 5-1 Paul Anthony
Nick Fullwell 5-4 Sean Palfrey
Rocco Maes 5-2 Steve Musson
Robert Watson-Lang 5-2 Andrew Davies
Masahiko Sano 5-3 Steve Randall
Ken Dobson 5-3 Simon Craven
Dave Smith 5-3 Steve Evans
Danny King 5-3 Jason Crawley
Peter Walford 5-3 Chris Hook
Danny Pinhorne 5-3 Gary Barnett
Michael Smith 5-3 Dylan Duo
Gary Blades 5-3 Chris Beeston
Kevin Dowling 5-4 Eddie Lovely
Simon Whatley 5-1 Andy Pearson
Matt Gallet 5-0 Andy Mason
Kelvin Painter 5-3 Peter Aleman
Alan Caves 5-3 Brian Jones

First Round
Mick McGowan 5-1 Martyn Turner
Matt Jackson 5-1 Tony Littleton
Martin Burchell 5-4 Scott Marsh
Tony Ayres 5-0 Tony Blundell
Dickie Foster 5-1 Lionel Sams
Jim Withers 5-4 Ian Lever
Andy Callaby 5-0 Jim Young
Stephen Hardy 5-0 Simon Burt
Jason Clark 5-3 Darren Whittingham
Mark Stephenson 5-1 Sean White
Gary Welding 5-4 Scott Kirchner
Arron Monk 5-2 Gary Noonan
Ray Farrell 5-3 Darren Webster
James Barton 5-2 Harry Anderson
Patrick Moylan 5-4 Colin Ritchie
Stuart Dutton 5-2 John Quantock
Louis Blundell 5-2 Jacko Barry
Ian Branks 5-4 Darren Green
Mark Carter 5-3 Ian Eames
Bob Crawley 5-3 Shane Cox
Brendan Dolan 5-3 Ben Burton
Matt Chapman 5-2 Kevin Hill
Mark Jones 5-3 Joe Cullen
Joey Palfreyman 5-2 David Platt
Dave Askew 5-0 Richie Plowman
Peter Wright 5-0 Garry Spedding
Richard McLaughlin 5-0 Andy Fulton
Dave Honey 5-3 Alan Green
Steve Brown 5-2 Mark Tiller
Michael Barnard 5-2 Steve Lane
Andy Howarth 5-2 Jann Hoffman
John Kuczynski 5-0 Sean Dowling
Mark Jodrill 5-0 Gary Mawson
Martin Whatmough 5-4 Norman Fletcher
John Jenkinson 5-4 Steve Cusick
Steve Grubb 5-4 Jimmy Mann
Chris Thompson 5-2 Mark Frost
Sam Rooney 5-0 Andy Relf
Graeme Stoddart 5-4 Chris Cooper
Isen Veljic 5-2 Russell Mason
Steve Hine 5-3 Darren Sutton
Richie Burnett 5-3 Dave Ladley
Chris White 5-2 Geoff Whitworth
Nick Fullwell 5-4 Rocco Maes
Justin Pipe 5-3 Wayne Atwood
Darren Johnson 5-2 Jimmy O’Regan
Geoff Wylie 5-4 Robert Watson-Lang
Ken Dobson 5-0 Masahiko Sano
Colin Monk 5-1 Chris Daglish
Chris Allen 5-4 Ricky Williams
Karl Loiseau 5-2 Dave Ansell
Dave Smith 5-3 Danny King
Dennis Smith 5-4 Paul Knighton
Stuart Stubbs 5-1 Kevin Reade
Peter Walford 5-1 Dennis McCarthy
Michael Smith 5-3 Danny Pinhorne
Mark Lawrence 5-1 Alan Warriner-Little
Andrew Coulter 5-3 Jonathan Overton
Gary Blades 5-4 Miloslav Navratil
Kevin Dowling 5-2 Simon Whatley
John MaGowan 5-1 Darren Latham
Paul Williams 5-4 Yves Cottenge
Ian Perkins 5-3 Matt Gallet
Alan Caves 5-1 Kelvin Painter

Second Round
Mick McGowan 5-4 Matt Jackson
Tony Ayres 5-0 Martin Burchell
Jim Withers 5-1 Dickie Foster
Stephen Hardy 5-3 Andy Callaby
Mark Stephenson 5-4 Jason Clark
Gary Welding 5-2 Arron Monk
Ray Farrell 5-3 James Barton
Stuart Dutton 5-3 Patrick Moylan
Louis Blundell 5-1 Ian Branks
Bob Crawley 5-0 Mark Carter
Brendan Dolan 5-1 Matt Chapman
Joey Palfreyman 5-4 Mark Jones
Dave Askew 5-3 Peter Wright
Richard McLaughlin 5-4 Dave Honey
Michael Barnard 5-1 Steve Brown
John Kuczynski 5-1 Andy Howarth
Martin Whatmough 5-3 Mark Jodrill
Steve Grubb 5-0 John Jenkinson
Chris Thompson 5-4 Sam Rooney
Isen Veljic 5-2 Graeme Stoddart
Richie Burnett 5-4 Steve Hine
Nick Fullwell 5-1 Chris White
Darren Johnson 5-2 Justin Pipe
Ken Dobson 5-1 Geoff Wylie
Colin Monk 5-1 Chris Allen
Dave Smith 5-1 Karl Loiseau
Dennis Smith 5-0 Stuart Stubbs
Michael Smith 5-4 Peter Walford
Andrew Coulter 5-4 Mark Lawrence
Gary Blades 5-4 Kevin Dowling
John MaGowan 5-3 Paul Williams
Alan Caves 5-3 Ian Perkins

Third Round
Tony Ayres 5-4 Mick McGowan
Jim Withers 5-3 Stephen Hardy
Mark Stephenson 5-4 Gary Welding
Ray Farrell 5-3 Stuart Dutton
Louis Blundell 5-4 Bob Crawley
Brendan Dolan 5-3 Joey Palfreyman
Dave Askew 5-4 Richard McLaughlin
Michael Barnard 5-3 John Kuczynski
Steve Grubb 5-2 Martin Whatmough
Isen Veljic 5-2 Chris Thompson
Nick Fullwell 5-3 Richie Burnett
Ken Dobson 5-1 Darren Johnson
Dave Smith 5-3 Colin Monk
Dennis Smith 5-2 Michael Smith
Gary Blades 5-3 Andrew Coulter
John MaGowan 5-2 Alan Caves
Losers: £500

Fourth Round
Tony Ayres 5-2 Jim Withers
Mark Stephenson 5-3 Ray Farrell
Brendan Dolan 5-4 Louis Blundell
Michael Barnard 5-4 Dave Askew
Steve Grubb 5-4 Isen Veljic
Nick Fullwell 5-4 Ken Dobson
Dennis Smith 5-3 Dave Smith
John MaGowan 5-0 Gary Blades
Winners: Place in Ladbrokes.com World Darts Championship First Round
Losers: £1,000

Round-by-Round Updates
Preliminary Round
American trio Scott Kirchner, Chris White and Isen Veljic progress through to the first round, defeating Colin McGarry,Paul Anthony and Gary Storey respectively.
Denmark’s Jann Hoffman wins 5-3 against Alan Priestley to move into first round.
Joe Cullen, Simon Burt, Chris Cooper and Matt Gallet all record 5-0 wins.
Shayne Burgess is defeated 5-3 by David Platt, while Stuart Dutton ends Lee Palfreyman’s hopes.
Alan Green edges past Frazer Hill 5-4, with Stephen Hardy, Nick Fullwell and Kevin Dowling also winning final-leg deciders.
Sean Dowling joins brother Kevin in round one with 5-3 win over Erwin Extercatte.
Japan’s Masahiko Sano takes 5-3 win over Welshman Steve Randall.
American John Kuczynski defeats Steve Cupitt to move into round one.
Simon Whatley’s 5-1 win over Andy Pearson sets up first round clash with Kevin Dowling.
Wins for Kelvin Painter and Alan Caves, both players with televised experience, means they meet in round one.
Ken Dobson defeats Simon Craven 5-3 and now meets Sano in round one.

First Round
Mick McGowan – the top seed – opens with 5-1 win over Martyn Turner.
Mark Jodrill upsets Gary Mawson with 5-0 whitewash of the UK Open runner-up.
Seeds Lionel Sams, Jacko Barry and Darren Webster are knocked out by Dickie Foster, Louis Blundell and Ray Farrell respectively.
Brendan Dolan defeats Ben Burton 5-3, and Chris Thompson takes 5-2 win over Mark Frost.
Steve Brown, who competed in last year’s World Championship, defeats Mark Tiller 5-2, with Martin Whatmough, Matt Jackson and John MaGowan also taking victories.
Former World Championship qualifiers Martin Burchell, Ian Branks, Michael Barnard, Matt Chapman and Mark Lawrence all take wins.
Ex-World Champion Richie Burnett overcomes Dave Ladley 5-3.
Jason Clark takes 5-3 win over Darren Whittingham, while Dave Askew opens with whitewash of Richie Plowman.
Sam Rooney – who appeared in the UK Open and Las Vegas Desert Classic this year – sets up clash with Chris Thompson after whitewash win over Andy Relf.
Paul Williams edges past Belgium’s Yves Cottenge 5-4, and now meets John MaGowan.
Andy Callaby and Stephen Hardy take 5-0 wins over Jim Young and Stephen Hardy to set up second round meeting.
Mark Jones knocks out young prospect Joe Cullen 5-3,
Chris White takes 5-2 win over Geoff Whitworth to move into last 64.
Number ten seed Wayne Atwood is knocked out 5-3 by Justin Pipe.
Gary Welding edges past American Scott Kirchner in a deciding leg.
Joey Palfreyman moves into second round with 5-2 win over David Platt, while Steve Grubb takes 5-4 win over Jimmy Mann.
John Kuczynski whitewashes Sean Dowling to progress to round two, and is joined by fellow countryman Isen Veljic – a 5-2 winner over Russell Mason.
Dave Smith and Michael Smith both progress, defeating Danny King and Danny Pinhorne respectively.
Gary Blades wins narrowly against Czech ace Miloslav Navratil – denying him a second successive World Championship appearance.
Alan Caves takes 5-1 win over Kelvin Painter, while Stuart Dutton and Kevin Dowling also move through with wins over John Quantock and Simon Whatley.

Second Round
Top seed Mick McGowan progresses to last 32 with narrow 5-4 win over Matt Jackson.
Jim Withers defeats Dickie Foster 5-1, while Martin Whatmough takes 5-3 win over Mark Jodrill.
Tony Ayres sets up board final with McGowan after 5-0 defeat of Martin Burchell.
Mark Stephenson wins in a deciding leg against Jason Clark.
Stephen Hardy’s win over Andy Callaby sets up board final against Withers.
Louis Blundell and Bob Crawley progress to board five final with big wins over Ian Branks and Mark Carter.
Brendan Dolan defeats Matt Chapman 5-1.
Bristol’s Steve Brown loses 5-1 to Michael Barnard, while experienced Dave Askew overcomes Peter Wright 5-3.
Dennis Smith also moves into last 32 with 5-0 defeat of Stuart Stubbs.
Colin Monk is another seed to progress, defeating Chris Allen 5-4.
Chris Thompson sneaks past Sam Rooney in a deciding leg.
Steve Grubb whitewashes John Jenkinson and now meets Martin Whatmough.
Richie Burnett secures narrow defeat of Steve Hine to move into board 11 final.
Joey Palfreyman takes narrow 5-4 win over Mark Jones and now meets Dolan in last 32.
John Kuczynski will meet Barnard in board eight final, but fellow American Chris White goes down 5-1 to Nick Fullwell.
Gary Welding ends the hopes of Arron Monk with 5-2 victory.
Dave Smith’s win over Karl Loiseau sets up clash with Colin Monk, while Dennis Smith and Michael Smith will meet in board 14 final.
John MaGowan defeats Paul Williams 5-3 to move into last 32.
Alan Caves’ win over Ian Perkins sets up third round game with MaGowan.

Third Round
Wins for Tony Ayres, in a deciding leg against Mick McGowan, and Jim Withers, against Stephen Hardy, means that they play off for a place in the Ladbrokes.com World Darts Championship.
Steve Grubb defeats Martin Whatmough to move to a game away from a place in the World Championship.
Louis Blundell edges past Bob Crawley 5-4 to reach deciding game.
Ray Farrell wins 5-3 against Stuart Dutton.
Michael Barnard ends the hopes of John Kuczynski with 5-3 victory.
Nick Fullwell defeats former World Champion Richie Burnett 5-4 to move through to last 16,
Dave Smith overcomes Colin Monk 5-3 and Dennis Smith defeats Michael Smith 5-2 to set up their deciding clash.
Dave Askew defeats Surrey rival Richard McLaughlin in a deciding leg and now meets Barnard for a place at Alexandra Palace.
Brendan Dolan’s 5-3 win over Joey Palfreyman gives him clash with Louis Blundell in round four.
Veteran Northern Irishman John MaGowan moves into last 16 with 5-2 defeat of Alan Caves.
American Isen Veljic defeats Chris Thompson to set up deciding game with Steve Grubb.
Gary Welding misses a total of 30 darts to defeat Mark Stephenson before the Newcastle-based player moves into decider against Ray Farrell.

Fourth Round
Tony Ayres wins debut in Ladbrokes.com World Darts Championship with 5-2 victory over Jim Withers.
Steve Grubb joins Ayres in qualifying for Alexandra Palace with 5-4 defeat of Isen Veljic – coming from 4-2 down against the American.
Dennis Smith defeats Dave Smith 5-3 to earn a return to the World Championship stage, with his last appearance coming three years ago.
Newcastle’s Mark Stephenson wins World Championship place with 5-3 defeat of Ray Farrell.
Brendan Dolan takes narrow victory over Louis Blundell to win a place in a third major tournament of the year, having previously played at the UK Open and the World Grand Prix.
Romford’s Michael Barnard edges out Dave Askew 5-4 to win World Championship spot.
Northern Ireland’s John MaGowan whitewashes Gary Blades to ensure return to World Championship.
Nick Fullwell is another narrow victor, with a 5-4 defeat of Ken Dobson giving him a debut on the World Championship stage.

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