Matt Campbell, Jelle Klaasen and Simon Whitlock are all safely into the second round of the Austrian Darts Open on the PDC European Tour thanks to victories over Ian White, William O'Connor and Kim Huybrechts in Graz.
In the first match of the evening session, 'Diamond' Ian White was up against Canada's Matt Campbell. White was searching for his first European Tour win of the year after three straight defeats, but it was Campbell who started the better and took the opening leg. In a quality, nip-and-tuck affair it was Campbell who prevailed 6-5 with a 94.79 average to book his spot in round two.
Next up William O'Connor was taking on the former Lakeside world champion Jelle Klaasen. No longer a tour card holder, Klaasen had to win six matches just to qualify for the tournament and started impressively, racing into an early 3-1 lead.
Ever the fighter however, O'Connor came roaring back and was soon all square again at 3-3. Successive holds of throw from both players followed meaning for the second match in a row, it was a sudden-death deciding leg. Klaasen prevailed, booking himself a second-round tie with Jonny Clayton.
Friday evening schedule at the Austrian Darts Open featuring van Barneveld, Klaasen and Huybrechts
In one of the first-round ties that stood out when the draw was made, it was Kim Huybrechts versus Simon Whitlock up next. In a sloppy first leg, Whitlock saw a number of darts at double come at go before Huybrechts would pin tops, first time of asking and steal an opening break of throw.
More double trouble in leg two saw both players miss opportunities before Huybrechts again was the man to take the leg. After finally nailing a double at his 13th time of asking to take leg 3, Whitlock looked to have settled and soon led 3-2.
As the story of the match continued to be missed darts at double, both players will have felt they should have won. As it turned out Whitlock was the one to prevail 6-4.