There should be a lot of talking points on the fifth night at the World Darts Championship.

Every match tells a story; the tale of the first evening session tie is of two players hoping to earn a PDC Tour Card. Ritchie Edhouse has had one, and lost it. Boris Koltsov has yet to gain that experience. Yet it’s the Russian who has been to the World Darts Championship three times, while his English counterpart makes his debut. We’ve taken a closer look at the Challenge Tour rivals right here.

Two 2019 PDC event winners clash in the second game of the session, which says a lot about the depth of quality in the first round. Jose de Sousa has been around for a while, but it’s this year where the Portuguese has really made his mark in darts. There’s now a feeling that he’ll continue rising up the rankings. Damon Heta, a shock World Series winner, is also earmarked for success – he’ll be a favourite at Q-School, assuming he doesn’t reach the semi-finals here and earn a Tour Card outright. He couldn’t…could he? We’ve previewed this mammoth first round tie here.

Pieter Verbeek/PV-Darts

Photo: Pieter Verbeek/PV-Darts

Return of the Barney-slayer

Fallon Sherrock makes her World Darts Championship bow on Tuesday. The Milton Keynes thrower’s bubbling enthusiasm has made her Twitter feed one of the highlights of the tournament to date. She’ll get a fantastic reception as well. Mikuru Suzuki came so close to victory, and now we’ll see if Sherrock can take the extra step. Ted Evetts comes into the tournament with bags of confidence having torn up the Development Tour scene – but could the crowd play a part in bringing him down a peg? Sherrock doesn’t need that, but does know she’ll have to add consistency to her A-game. We’ve got that first round tie previewed here.

Darin Young doesn’t do scripts. Raymond van Barneveld’s career is now over, and it’s mostly thanks to the American’s clinical performance in their first round game. Some have suggested that Young’s celebrations were uncalled for. All I can say to that is: win a World Darts Championship match when 99% of the crowd is against you, and see if you don’t want to jump around a bit. Big Daddy showed the ultimate respect to his opponent by treating it as a normal job, but celebrating like the big deal it was.

Now he has an even tougher task. Unlike Barney, Jeffrey de Zwaan has his best days firmly ahead of him. That’s not to say he can’t do the business here and now. His performance against Rob Cross in last year’s second round will win nine games out of ten on the Ally Pally stage, at this point in the tournament. Young doesn’t have what Cross had that night. But the Dutchman has had some stick for not kicking on; we don’t know if he can replicate his best stuff. Should he dip, Young will sense double Dutch delight.

Click here for more information on the PDC World Championship, which takes place at the Alexandra Palace between December 13 and January 1.

PDC World Darts Championship 2020 schedule

Tuesday December 17, evening session

Ritchie Edhouse vs Boris Koltsov (R1)
Jose De Sousa vs Damon Heta (R1)
Ted Evetts vs Fallon Sherrock (R1)
Jeffrey de Zwaan vs Darin Young (R2)

Evert Zomer

Photo: Evert Zomer

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Author: Ed McCosh