The BDO World Championship is a day old, and it has already provided plenty of excitement. What it didn’t provide was a single 3-1 win in the men’s event, or a 2-1 win in the women’s. Perhaps the afternoon session of day two will right that terrible wrong.

Glen Durrant vs Gary Robson

The world champion returns to defend his title. Glen Durrant could have wandered off into the sunset after winning the BDO World Championship a year ago – or at least to Wigan, where the PDC Q-School is held. But Durrant opted to spend much of 2017 playing in exhibitions, and has now returned to Frimley Green. An impressive performance at the Grand Slam showed that the lack of competitive action has not taken Duzza’s edge off at all.
But there will be plenty of competition at the Lakeside. His first opponent is a tough one, as Gary Robson seeks to win the battle of the North-East stars. Pengiran Mohamed did not make things too tough for Robson in the preliminary round, but Big Robbo still played excellently. Only one of the two lazily-nicknamed stars can progress. If Durrant brings his A-game, Robson cannot match him. If not, it could be quite the battle.

Ümit Uygunsözlü vs Chris Harris (prelim)

Pengiran Mohamed became the first person from Brunei to play at a darts World Championship yesterday. Today, Ümit Uygunsözlü will be the first person from Turkey. A leading player in Eastern Europe, Uygunsözlü has been in and around the majors in the past year. Now he turns his attention to the biggest tournament of them all. In his way stands Chris Harris, one of a corral of Welsh entrants. Fun fact about Harris; he was once awarded a bottle of Lambrini for hitting a nine-darter. Whether or not that is a greater achievement than appearing at the Lakeside is up to him, really. Another Welshman, Dean Reynolds, awaits the winner in the first round.

Corrine Hammond vs Fallon Sherrock (Women’s)

Two former World Championship finalists clash in the first round at the Lakeside. Corrine Hammond went all the way last year, only for Lisa Ashton to defeat the Australian comfortably in the final. Hammond has performed well this year, reaching two major finals. In fact, she reached three finals in one week in September, winning one of them. Fallon Sherrock is a tough opponent for the fifth seed. The Milton Keynes thrower knew Hammond’s pain a year ago all too well; she herself lost to Ashton in the final three years ago. 2017 hasn’t been as kind to Sherrock, but the Scottish Open champion is dangerous. The winner takes on…you guessed it, Lisa Ashton.

Ross Montgomery vs Scott Waites

A real treat to end this afternoon of World Championship action; fifth seed Ross Montgomery may have expected a nice draw in the first round. Instead, he faces the prospect of handling Scotty 2 Hotty. Waites is the two-time world champion, and the only BDO player ever to win the Grand Slam. But a drop in ranking means he is unseeded for the championships, making Montgomery the favourite. Yet the Scot does not wear that tag well; his form at the Lakeside is nothing short of awful. In 10 World Championship appearances, Montgomery has lost in the first round six times, the second round three times, and the quarter-finals once. Waites, by contrast, has only lost once at the first hurdle. This battle between recent all-round superiority and long-standing Lakeside superiority could be extremely tight.

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Author: Ed McCosh