The BDO World Championship continues at the Lakeside, with both of the last two preliminary ties being played. In the third and final game of the session, Danny Noppert continues his quest to win the title.

David Cameron vs Michael Unterbuchner (prelim)

The former Prime Minister is long gone, but this David Cameron is still a regular fixture. After three years of preliminary round defeats, the Canadian finally reached the first round last year. It didn’t go to plan for Excalibur, as Danny Noppert thrashed him 3-0. This time around, he takes on German debutant Michael Unterbuchner. Unterbuchner has been in decent form recently, reaching the World Cup singles quarter-finals and the Italian Grand Masters final. He did well enough to fight through a tough qualifier, and that makes him a more than worthy opponent. The winner of this tie plays third seed Jamie Hughes in round one.

Craig Caldwell vs Daniel Day (prelim)

Craig Caldwell returns to the Lakeside, making his third World Championship appearance. The New Zealander is a 180-hitting machine. In his 2016 defeat to Scott Mitchell, Caldwell threw nine maximums. That tally equaled the record for most 180s in a BDO World Championship first round match. He had averaged 90 in his preliminary match, but was edged out by the then-defending world champion. Last year, a different Caldwell turned up, and was turned over by Dennis Harbour. This time, he takes on English debutant Daniel Day, who reached the last 48 of the World Masters in 2017. If the 2016 Caldwell rocks up to the oche, he will win, and 14th seed Martin Phillips might be in trouble in the first round.

Danny Noppert vs Richie Edwards

In the only first round tie of the session, two unseeded players meet – the only seedless match of the round. Danny Noppert, though, is last year’s runner-up. Not only that, he’s a huge favourite for the title this year. Noppert was highly impressive in the 3-0 defeat of Joe Chaney, averaging 94.89. His next opponent is Richie Edwards, who replaced James Hurrell due to the 15th seed’s illness. As the highest-ranked player who failed to qualify outright for the Lakeside, Edwards certainly has some pedigree. But the Welshman will need to produce something very special to prevent Noppert from setting up a meeting with Mark McGeeney in round two.

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Author: Ed McCosh