KIM HUYBRECHTS won the battle of the Belgian brothers by coming from a set down against Ronny to win their Ladbrokes World Championship clash 3-1 on Monday night, as South Africa’s Devon Petersen returned to the limelight by knocking out Steve Beaton at Alexandra Palace.
History was made as brothers faced off in the World Championship for the first time, as world number 12 Kim Huybrechts fended off the challenge of older brother Ronny.
However, it was the 48-year-old, on his World Championship debut, who drew first blood by winning the game’s opening set 3-1, and also led 2-0 in the second set – only to miss four darts to double his lead.
Kim hit back to edge the set 3-2 and took the third set in the same manner to move 2-1 up, before racing through the fourth set without reply to seal a hard-fought victory.
“I’m a very lucky boy because Ronny was by far the better player,” said Kim afterwards. “It’s the hardest game I’ve ever played in my life.
“It was a game of weakness, not of strength today. After I made it 1-1 in sets I thought I was going to win, but I think whoever won the third set was going to win the game.
“I will feel far better mentally for my next game against Ian White because there will be no emotion in the game.”
Ronny had only turned professional in January when he won a Tour Card at Qualifying School, and he has since partnered his brother to the World Cup of Darts final and reached the European Championship semi-finals.
“I’ve had an amazing year and it’s disappointing the way it’s finished,” he conceded. “If I’d drawn someone else maybe it would have been a different story, but I’ve got mixed feelings.
“The first set was okay and then I went 2-0 up in the second set and started thinking! I missed four darts four the set and he stepped in and took it. I know if it was 2-0 it was game over, but he came back well.”
The night featured two upsets as seeded stars Steve Beaton and Ronnie Baxter were knocked out by returning Devon Petersen and debutant Ricky Evans respectively.
South African ace Petersen, making his return to the big stage after taking a year out of the sport to overcome an arm injury, defeated Malaysia’s Mohammed Latif Sapup 4-1 in their preliminary round game just to win through to the first round.
Petersen then landed a 141 checkout in the opening set of his clash with Beaton, only for the former Lakeside Champion to take first blood 3-1.
The South African Masters champion hit back to level by taking the second set 3-2, with Beaton coming back from 2-0 down to level only to miss four darts to double his lead as Petersen squared the game.
The youngster then came from a leg down to take the third set 3-1, and edged the fourth in a decider on double 16 to joyfully seal his second round place, delighting the Alexandra Palace crowd with his dance moves in the process!
“It’s a fantastic feeling to have beaten a great player like Steve,” said Petersen. “I felt like I was waiting for Steve to turn up, and I took advantage.
“It’s a big thing for me because I get to come back for another game now. The injury has set me back a year but I really enjoyed this and the crowd were fantastic with me.”
World Youth Championship finalist Evans, meanwhile produced a major upset with a straight sets win over veteran ace Ronnie Baxter.
Evans won the game’s first set without reply in only five minutes, and took the second 3-1 before completing a rapid-fire triumph when he edged the third in a deciding leg.
“I’m speechless,” admitted the 23-year-old from Kettering. “It’s not bad for a debut and I’m chuffed to bits – I’ll remember this for the rest of my life.
“My dream was to be at Ally Pally in the World Championship, and I’ve done that and I’m in the second round, so who knows what can happen now? The only time I had nerves was on the walk-on, and the first set really settled me down.
“I played really well. The 180s and the doubles were going in, and everything clicked.
“Since Qualifying School, my game has gone up and up. I always knew I could play darts, but if you’d said to me two years ago that I’d be beating these kind of players I’d have laughed at you, so I’m really happy.”
The night’s other winner was Mervyn King, who dropped only one leg as he swept past American number one Darin Young in straight sets with a fine display.
The former semi-finalist took the first two sets without reply to take command of the match, and also led 2-0 in the third before the left-hander replied with double seven.
Young then scored 180, 140 and 165 in the next leg as he threatened a comeback, only to miss 13 darts at doubles as King clawed back into the leg before claiming the win on double top.
“In the first two sets I felt totally in control, and everything Darin did I matched or bettered, and I never felt like I was going to lose,” said King.
“My performance fell away a little bit at the end and I managed to fall over the winning line. I feel a lot better about my game now than I did at this time last year, when I peaked too early and lost to Dean Winstanley, but I’m still on the way up.
“If it keeps going and I do hit form then I’m going a long way. I’ve got Ricky Evans next, and the way he dispatched Ronnie Baxter shows that he’s getting used to the stage.”
The first round continues on Tuesday night as last year’s runner-up, Michael van Gerwen, takes on either Austria’s Zoran Lerchbacher or Dorset’s Ben Ward, who meet in the preliminary round.
2010 finalist Simon Whitlock takes on PDC Unicorn Challenge Tour winner Ross Smith, Colin Lloyd takes on Oceanic Masters champion Beau Anderson, and Holland’s Vincent van der Voort meets PDPA Qualifier Matt Clark.
Ladbrokes World Darts Championship
Monday December 16
Ronnie Baxter 0-3 Ricky Evans
Devon Petersen 4-1 Mohammed Latif Sapup (P)
Kim Huybrechts 3-1 Ronny Huybrechts
Steve Beaton 1-3 Devon Petersen
Mervyn King 3-0 Darin Young
Tuesday December 17 (7pm)
Colin Lloyd v Beau Anderson
Zoran Lerchbacher v Ben Ward (P)
Vincent van der Voort v Matt Clark
Michael van Gerwen v Lerchbacher/Ward
Simon Whitlock v Ross Smith
Preliminary Round (P) – Best of Seven Legs
First Round – Best of Five Sets
RICKY EVANS 3-0 RONNIE BAXTER
(3-0, 3-1, 3-2)
RICKY EVANS produced a fantastic debut performance at the Ladbrokes World Darts Championship to knock 19th seed Ronnie Baxter out by a 3-0 margin.
The 23-year-old from Kettering, who reached the final of the 2013 PDC Unicorn World Youth Championship, outplayed his more experienced opponent throughout the contest to progress to round two.
“I’ve had a great first year on the circuit and It’s fantastic to beat a player of the calibre of Ronnie,” said a delighted Evans, who has risen to 76th on the PDC Order of Merit since securing a Tour Card in January.
“I didn’t feel many nerves tonight and I think my experiences at The O2 and in the Grand Slam of Darts earlier this year were a huge benefit to me.
“Winning on the Youth Tour regularly has given me huge confidence. It’s a great format and helps with the steep learning curve I’m going through right now.”
Evans hit a 180 in the process of taking the opening leg of the game before recording a 12-dart-finish to continue the excellent start.
The Kettering ace wrapped up the first set in the next leg before going on to take second by a 3-1 scoreline after Baxter missed a host of opportunities on the doubles.
The third set went to a deciding leg, and Evans made use of the advantage of throwing first as he hit a fourth 180, followed by an accurate attempt at double six to confirm a superb win.
0-1 – Evans starts superbly on his World Championship debut with a 180 and goes on to hit double ten to take the opening leg.
0-2 – The Kettering youngster hits back-to-back 140s to leave 41 after nine darts before breaking throw on double 16 for a 12-darter.
0-3 – Evans kicks off the leg with a 180 before Baxter replies with a score of 174. The 23-year-old is first to a finish and hits double six to leave Baxter trailing – winning the opening set in only five minutes.
0-1 – Evans continues his good form of the first set with consecutive 140s. However, a missed dart at double 14 gives Baxter a chance, only for two missed darts at double six to see Evans return to take the leg.
1-1 – Both players miss a dart at double to win the leg before Baxter lands double 16 to put a leg on the board.
1-2 – Baxter kicks off the leg with a maximum but proceeds to miss five darts at double and Evans cashes in by hitting double three to break.
1-3 – Evans misses three chances at double 16 to win the set but Baxter is no position to make an impression and Evans returns to hit double eight to leave the number 19 seed in big trouble.
0-1 – Evans hits double four to hold throw and make a positive start to set three.
1-1 – Baxter levels on double 16 to win just his second leg of the contest.
1-2 – Evans holds his nerve to hit double ten with a pressure dart after Baxter missed two opportunties to break throw.
2-2 – Baxter hits double top to force a deciding leg.
2-3 – Evans hits a fourth 180 and goes to leave 32 after 12 darts thrown. Baxter is unable to take out 131 and Evans hits double six with his third dart to claim a fantastic win.
DEVON PETERSEN 4-1 MOHAMMED LATIF SAPUP
SOUTH AFRICA’S Devon Petersen secured a spot in the first round of the 2014 Ladbrokes World Darts Championship with a 4-1 win over Malaysian qualifier Mohammed Latif Sapup.
Sapup, making his second appearance in this competition, was guilty of numerous missed doubles in the opening two legs, before Petersen landed double 18 to establish a 3-0 cushion.
The Malaysian won the fourth leg with a fabulous 141 checkout, hitting treble 20, treble 15 and double 18, but that poved to be the one highlight for Sapup as Petersen won the next leg on duble 18 once more seal the win.
“I found it difficult to settle early on and the 4-1 scoreline does flatter me a little,” said Petersen, who made a big impression in reaching the last 32 at Alexandra Palace two years ago.
“We were both nervous early on and Mohammed missed a lot of doubles and he should really have gone 2-0 up. It’s great to get through and I will be much more relaxed for my next game against Steve Beaton.”
1-0 – Sapup misses five opportunties to win the first leg, which the South African edges on double ten to hold throw.
2-0 – Petersen takes advantage of more missed doubles from his opponent as he lands double 18 to move further ahead.
3-0 – The South African hits double 18 for the second leg running to move a leg away from the first round.
3-1 – The Malaysian qualifier hits a fantastic 141 checkout with Petersen waiting on a two-darter to win the match.
4-1 – Petersen hits double 18 with his third dart to close out the match, and will now face Steve Beaton for a place in the last 32.
KIM HUYBRECHTS 3-1 RONNY HUYBRECHTS
(1-3, 3-2, 3-2, 3-0)
KIM HUYBRECHTS overcame his elder brother Ronny 3-1 in an eagerly anticipated first round battle in the 2014 Ladbrokes World Darts Championship.
Ronny, making his debut appearance at Alexandra Palace, took the opening set of the contest, capitalising on his younger brother’s mistakes on the doubles.
Kim continued to struggle as Ronny won the opening two legs of the second set to move to the verge of a two-set lead.
But five missed darts at doubles saw Kim draw level before the world number 12 took the third set in a deciding leg, again coming from 2-0 down to punish missed doubles for the set from Ronny.
The elder brother failed to overcome that disappointment as Kim won the fourth set without reply, rounding of the game with a 110 checkout.
“I was missing a lot of doubles early on and I got really anxious and tight,” admitted the number 12 seed, who will now face Ian White for a place in the third round.
“Ronny was by far the better player and should have gone two sets up. I felt sorry for him when he missed those doubles but I had to put it out of my mind and concentrate.
“Tonight’s match was against Ronny was much harder than our clash in the Grand Slam last month. I will feel far better mentally for my next game against Ian White.
“Maybe this was the luck I needed to have a good tournament. Adrian Lewis nearly lost in the first round to Nigel Heydon a couple of years ago and became World Champion. It could be a good omen for me and I might have a good tournament now after coming through this really tough test.”
0-1 – Kim starts superbly, landing a 180 with his first three darts, but misses two chances to win the leg and his elder brother breaks throw on double eight.
1-1 – Kim lands another 180 but seven missed darts at doubles give Ronny an opportunity to steal the leg. However, he fails with four attempts and Kim returns to hit double two.
1-2 – Ronny regains the lead on double 16 to record an accomplished 13-darter.
1-3 – An accurate attempt at double 18 gives Ronny another 13-dart-finish as he draws first blood.
0-1 – Ronny takes out a 64 finish on double 16 to hold throw at the start of set two.
0-2 – The number 12 seed is off-target on tops for a 119 finish and Ronny takes out 80 on double ten to pile further pressure onto his younger brother.
1-2 – Ronny wastes four chances to win the set and Kim converts a 65 finish to steal the leg.
2-2 – Ronny takes command of the leg with scores of 180 and 140. However, one more missed dart for the set sees Kim take out an excellent 90 finish, on the bullseye, to force a deciding leg.
3-2 – Kim lands double 18 to take out a 73 finish and level the contest, with his brother waiting on double 12 for a 2-0 lead.
0-1 – Both players miss one dart at double tops before Ronny edges the leg on double ten to break throw.
0-2 – Ronny takes out a 97 finish on double 12, with his brother waiting on 32.
1-2 – The 48-year-old hits his second maximum of the game but his younger sibling hits double 16 at the first attempt.
2-2 – Ronny leaves double 12 to win the set but Kim does not give his brother a chance as he takes out 84 in two darts to force another deciding leg.
3-2 – Ronny hits a 180 to take command of the leg, but missed darts at doubles prove costly as Kim lands double 18 to move ahead for the first time.
1-0 – Kim breaks his opponent’s throw on double top to win a third successive leg.
2-0 – The 28-year-old hits double ten to move a leg away from victory.
3-0 – Ronny leaves double eight after 15 darts thrown, only for Kim to take out a 110 checkout on double 16 to seal the win.
DEVON PETERSEN 3-1 STEVE BEATON
(1-3, 3-2, 3-1, 3-2)
SOUTH AFRICA’S Devon Petersen knocked Steve Beaton out of the 2014 Ladbrokes World Darts Championship with a brilliant four-set victory in the first round on Monday evening.
The 27-year-old, returning from taking a year out of the game to recovering from an arm injury, dropped the opening set, despite landing a superb 141 checkout in the second leg.
The second set went the full distance and proved crucial in the final outcome as Petersen landed a key double one, having missed six previous chances to level the match, after Beaton had missed four darts of his own for a 2-0 lead.
After losing the first leg of set three, Petersen roared back to take next three, which featured a 106 finish, to move 2-1 up in sets.
The South African established a 2-1 lead in the fourth set before Beaton won the fourth leg with an excellent 13-darter, but double 16 in the next saw Petersen secure a popular win, as he celebrated with his own unique dance on stage!
“I got the crowd on my side and the support they gave me was incredible,” said the South African Masters champion.
“I overcame some sticky patches, just like in my preliminary round game earlier, but I got the job done and it’s a fantastic feeling to have beaten a great player like Steve.”
1-0 – Beaton hits tops to win the first leg after Petersen misses one attempt at double 18.
1-1 – Petersen takes out a fantastic 141 checkout to level.
2-1 – The 1996 Lakeside Champion hits double six to regain the lead.
3-1 – Beaton wraps up the opening set on double 16 to take an early advantage.
0-1 – Petersen lands double one after missing numerous opportunties to win leg.
0-2 – The South African records a maximum before hitting double 16 to break throw.
1-2 – Petersen misses two chances to win the set and Beaton capitalises by hitting double 16.
2-2 – Beaton takes out a clinical 106 finish to force a deciding leg.
2-3 – Petersen lets four more chances to win the set slip away – six in all – but Beaton fails with four attempts of his own for a 2-0 lead and the South African ends a dramatic leg by hitting double one to level the contest.
1-0 – Beaton hits double 12 to record a 15-dart finish.
1-1 – Both players struggle to find the winning double before Petersen hits double one for the third time in the match to level.
1-2 – Petersen takes out an excellent 106 finish to break throw in style.
1-3 – The South African hits double eight at the first time of asking to move a set away from a great win.
0-1 – Both players post maximums before Petersen hits double five to continue the winning run of legs.
1-1 – Beaton levels by taking out a 98 finish on double 12.
1-2 – Petersen hits double top to move a leg away from the triumph after Beaton had missed one dart at the same double.
2-2 – Beaton produces an excellent 13-darter under pressure to force a deciding leg.
2-3 – The number 22 seed leaves 24 after 15 darts, but the South African takes out 50, hitting double 16 with his third dart, to record a memorable win.
MERVYN KING 3-0 DARIN YOUNG
(3-0, 3-0, 3-1)
MERVYN KING dropped just one leg to experienced American Darin Young in a clinical first round victory in the 2014 Ladbrokes World Darts Championship.
King, who suffered a first round exit in an epic clash against Dean Winstanley 12 months ago, will now face 23-year-old Ricky Evans next Monday for a place in the last 16.
The number 14 seed won the first set without reply from his opponent, rounding it off with a superb 136 checkout.
The 2009 semi-finalist continued his strong performance in the second set, which was won by a 3-0 margin, giving his opponent little chance of getting into the contest.
King won the opening two legs of the third set to increase the chance of a whitewash victory before Young avoided the fate by taking the third leg on double seven.
Young produced his best darts of the match in the next with scores of 180, 140 and 165 but failed with 13 attempts at doubles as King hit double top to complete a comprehensive win in just 25 minutes.
1-0 – King makes a good start to the game as he holds throw on double top.
2-0 – The number 14 seed hits a 180 before landing double ten to break the American’s throw.
3-0 – King seals the first set in great style as he hits a brilliant 136 finish.
1-0 – King continues to shut out his opponent as he hits double six to break throw, with Young yet to have a dart at a double.
2-0 – The former World Masters winner hits double 16 for a 15-darter, which featured a 180.
3-0 – Young misses two chances to get a leg on the board and the clinical King takes out 64 in two darts to move two sets clear.
1-0 – Young is off-target with one dart at double top and King takes advantage of the error to hit double 16 at the first attempt
2-0 – King moves a leg away from victory as he hits the centre of the double 16 bed to break throw.
2-1 – Young misses three darts at double seven but King is unable to set up a shot at a double and Young hits double seven to avoid a whitewash.
3-1 – The American registers of scores 180, 140 and 165 to leave double eight after nine darts, but misses a total of 13-darts at doubles and King takes the leg on double 20 to win the match.