Luke Humphries meets Devon Petersen in the third match of the 2020 PDC World Championship.

Read below for the third of 32 match previews for the World Championship first round ties.

Facts and figures

Match time/date: 21:00, December 13

Head-to-head record: Humphries 0-1 Petersen

Previous meeting: Humphries 4-6 Petersen, ET5 Qualifier (April 2019)

Best major performance this season: Last 64, Players Championship & UK Open (Humphries); Last 64, Players Championship (Petersen)

Previous PDC World Championship appearances: Humphries 2, Petersen 6

Best PDC World Championship performance: Quarter-finals, 2019 (Humphries); Last 16, 2014 & 2019 (Petersen)

Stefan Strassenburg/PDC Europe

Photo: Stefan Strassenburg/PDC Europe

Preview

Like it or not, critics; Luke Humphries is a world champion. Despite general bawling and hand-wringing over the fact he’s a 24-year-old relic, Cool Hand dashed the opposition to make it to the World Youth Championship final. In Minehead, just a couple of days after giving eventual champion Michael van Gerwen a test at the Players Championship Finals, he battered Adam Gawlas 6-0 to take the title.

Humphries shot into the public view by stunning defending champion Rob Cross at last year’s World Championship. From there, he made a very impressive Premier League Darts appearance, and is being widely tipped to be one of the world’s top players in the near future. He has also admirably confronted mental health issues, with an openness and maturity that endeared him to darts fans everywhere.

Devon Petersen is also much-loved by the neutral. The work that the African Warrior has put in to support darts in his home continent has been nothing short of exceptional. Petersen has bankrolled the development of an African tour, all with the aim of making the sport big in a massive continent. For now, however, he is by far the best that Africa has to offer. He almost went all the way last year, and may still be kicking himself at losing out to Nathan Aspinall in what was a very open field.

Prediction

This is seriously hard to call – there’s a good case for both. Petersen has posted some excellent averages throughout the season, but Humphries has shown more consistency in the last couple of months. Can they draw? No? Alright. We’ll plump for Luke Humphries 2-3 Devon Petersen, but can’t stress enough that we could believe any score could happen.

Lawrence Lustig/PDC

Photo: Lawrence Lustig/PDC

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Author: Ed McCosh