Seven nations are represented at the first session of the European Darts Matchplay 2019.
We start, however, with six Englishmen. First up is Scott Taylor’s tie with TV star Matthew Edgar. Taylor’s made a recent big screen showing himself, notching up the best average the BDO World Trophy has seen in a match. Now he has the chance to prove himself at the European Darts Matchplay, one of the PDC’s staple stage events.
Two all-English second round games are guaranteed. James Wade will be meeting the winner of Bradley Brooks’ game against Mark McGeeney. Following the duo are Ryan Meikle and Brett Clayton, battling out for the chance to take on Dave Chisnall.
The latter five ties have more of a cosmopolitan flavour. The Swede, Dennis Nilsson, makes his fourth European Tour appearance of the season. Previously, he has reached the Last 48, Last 32 and Last 16. Could something better be on the cards at the European Darts Matchplay? 22-year-old home nation qualifier Marvin Wehder, making his stage debut, will hope not.
More German joy for Clemens?
Cody Harris’ steady rise into the upper strata of darts continues to gather pace. The New Zealander has made his mark on the Players Championship scene. A European run will be next on his agenda. Ross Smith, dumped out by Czech sensation Adam Gawlas in Austria, will be keen to curb a promising player’s progress this time around.
It was dumb luck that brought the only two Poles at the Danish Darts Open together; Krzysztof Ratajski benefited, seeing off Krzysztof Kciuk. Kciuk’s European Tour debut thus ended abruptly, but the Katowice-born thrower has nowhere to go but up. He has Dirk van Duijvenbode firmly in his sights.
John Henderson’s year has pretty much centred around that Premier League Darts outing. Ranking money doesn’t come from the likes of that though – doing well at the European Darts Matchplay could prove vital in his quest for a spot at upcoming majors. Ryan Joyce has similarly faltered since reaching the World Championship quarter-finals, and could also do with some victories.
Last up in the schedule is an all-German tussle for the right to play Ian White on Saturday. The Mannheim crowd may favour Gabriel Clemens, one of Germany’s top talents, who rode a wave of public backing all the way to the German Darts Masters final in Köln. But there’ll also be plenty of love for Steffen Sipemann, who has proved himself capable of beating top-ranked players in the past.
European Darts Matchplay schedule
Day One, afternoon session
12:00 Scott Taylor v Matthew Edgar
12:30 Bradley Brooks v Mark McGeeney
13:00 Ryan Meikle v Brett Claydon
13:30 Dennis Nilsson v Marvin Wehder
14:00 Cody Harris v Ross Smith
14:30 Dirk van Duijvenbode v Krzysztof Kciuk
15:30 John Henderson v Ryan Joyce
16:00 Gabriel Clemens v Steffen Siepmann
Tags: PDC, PDC European Darts Matchplay, PDC European Tour 2019
Author: Ed McCosh