A total of 12 seeds have made it to the final day of the 2019 European Darts Open.
The battle to take the first European Tour event of the season is still fierce. After the afternoon session in Leverkusen, we’ll know the identities of the eight quarter-finalists. The favourite to take the European Darts Open title, naturally, is Michael van Gerwen. The PDC world number one cruised to a win over Mervyn King. In a repeat of the Players Championship 1 final, he meets fellow Dutchman Jermaine Wattimena. The Machine Gun has a reprieve after surviving match darts against Glen Durrant.
One of the four remaining non-seeds plays in the second tie. Krzysztof Ratajski was involved in a ding-dong of a match with Michael Smith. Having missed two darts to go 5-0 and 5-1 up, as well as missing two more to win 6-2, the Polish Eagle was taken all the way. He just about clung on to win. It doesn’t get any easier for him. Gerwyn Price emerged unscathed from a meeting with Scott Taylor on Saturday, and will be up for revenge over the man who dumped him out of the Players Championship Finals. The winner plays van Gerwen or Wattimena.
Mensur Suljovic plays Joe Cullen in the third game, before an all-English tie pits James Wade against Dave Chisnall. Justin Pipe is another non-seed to reach the last 16. His win over Ian White was a genuine triumph given the personal context of the game. He plays Darren Webster for a Sunday evening spot.
Calmer session needed
Rob Cross put in a sterling performance to dump Steve Beaton out of the European Darts Open on Saturday. He meets Jonny Clayton in the third round. The winner of this one will be the heavy favourite against Pipe or Webster in the quarter-finals.
Dimitri van den Bergh was caught up in a feisty affair with Adrian Lewis in the second round. He’ll be hoping for a more sedate showing this time. The Belgian prodigy takes on Daryl Gurney. He is the third non-seed of the afternoon; Ross Smith is the fourth. Victory over Simon Whitlock is another milestone in what has already been a promising 2019 season for the Englishman. Next on his hit list is two-time European Darts Open winner Peter Wright.
Afternoon session schedule
Michael van Gerwen v Jermaine Wattimena
Krzysztof Ratajski v Gerwyn Price
Mensur Suljovic v Joe Cullen
James Wade v Dave Chisnall
Justin Pipe v Darren Webster
Rob Cross v Jonny Clayton
Dimitri Van den Bergh v Daryl Gurney
Peter Wright v Ross Smith
Author: Ed McCosh