2021 PDC World Darts Championship schedule: Tuesday evening session including Cross versus Van Duijvenbode
Tonight's World Championship schedule has some real international flavour.
Two South Africans are in the second round, and they feature in our opening two games. First up, we finally get to see Cameron Carolissen, who was the unwitting beneficiary of Martijn Kleermaker and Josh Payne being ruled out. He'd likely have rather had the chance to win on his own terms, but the extra £7,500 doesn't hurt. Now he'll get that long-awaited debut against one of the seeds.
Danny Noppert continues to establish himself as one of the best about, moving into the top 32 for this World Championship. If there's one criticism about Noppie, it's that his form can inexplicably turn sour at times - previous Ally Pally runs have hit early stumbling blocks because of it. He'll want to get his form and confidence right up ahead of a potential third round meeting with Dave Chisnall or Keegan Brown.
After Carolissen, Devon Petersen will take to the stage either hoping to give double delight to South African fans, or keep the nation's interests alive as he has done so often before. This time, Petersen does it as a seed, as a reward for huge strides made in 2020. He will score heavily, which will often give him the opportunities to turn games in his favour, and has shown a penchant for big comebacks.
Steve Lennon isn't what you'd necessarily call a power scorer, but showed in his first round win over Daniel Larsson that he can grab games by the scruff of the neck. He's a hard one to shake because of his trademark consistency, and always keeps a poker face in contrast with the outwardly emotive Petersen. The nerves will be there for both, regardless of how it looks.
Rob Cross could really do with something special to round off a bit of a poor year. Coming back to the venue where he so spectacularly became king of the world on debut might get the fires burning again. There have been some green shoots of recovery emerging from his game recently. Now, it's about reasserting himself as one of the best in the world, something that has been cast into doubt recently.
While Cross has been on a downward trend, Dirk van Duijvenbode's on the up and up. In another year, he may have collapsed to defeat against the impressive Bradley Brooks. The new and improved Aubergenius doesn't get dumped out so easily now, and he showed top composure to turn things around. Some are already saying the big Dutchman is the favourite in his section, and a win here would reinforce those claims.
How about a bit of Christmas Limmy then?! There's a chance that we could see the immortal Paul Lim after the festive break, which would be a treat for us all. He got more than a slice of luck against Luke Humphries, but that's not to detract from a decent showing which culminated in the Singaporean having a touch more composure than his opponent.
Composure has gone from being Dimitri van den Bergh's weakness to a strength. Perhaps it was his time spent in the Peter Wright boot camp (if so, please add me to your social bubble, Peter). Maybe it was one of the many breakthrough moments he's had, most notably the brilliant World Matchplay title. Either way, Van Den Bergh looks like a world champion in the making. Make no mistake, this is a big early banana skin for the Belgian.
2021 PDC World Darts Championship schedule
Tuesday December 22
Evening Session (18:00 GMT)
18:10 Danny Noppert v Cameron Carolissen (R2)
19:10 Devon Petersen v Steve Lennon (R2)
20:10 Rob Cross v Dirk van Duijvenbode (R2)
21:10 Dimitri van den Bergh v Paul Lim (R2)