Cullen produces brilliant comeback to see off White in sudden death thriller
Joe Cullen is through to the second round of the World Matchplay after producing a brilliant comeback to see off Ian White in a sudden death thriller 13-12.
Cullen was 8-4 down against White but poor finishing in the latter half of the game especially when 'Diamond' found himself on the cusp of winning the tie saw him take the lead. It was back and forth from there going all the way to a nail biting final leg which the Bradford ace took.
Cullen led 3-0 to begin the tie but finishes of 118 and 151 saw White bring himself back on level terms. This comeback was underlined at the interval with the Stoke-on-Trent ace leading 6-4; as he opened up a two-leg cushion after some poor finishing from Cullen. The pressure continued to toll on 'The Rockstar'; as he went 7-4 behind with a break of throw from White.
It was soon two away from White who hit a 100 checkout to make it 8-4. Cullen made one last gasp effort to stay in proceedings holding throw with a 95 checkout; which saw him hit two double 19's to make it 8-5.
This began a fight back for Cullen as he claimed three legs on the spin to make it 8-7 with a 98 checkout; after White had missed double 12 for a 141 to go one away. It was parity out of nowhere from there as Cullen pounced on poor finishing from White to make it 8-8.
It was one away for Cullen but a hold of throw; with an 89 checkout on the bull saw White put sudden death on the cards.
The Bradford ace edged back in front with a hold of throw to make it 10-9; with a break now needed to close it out. White though held throw to make it 10-10 and Cullen held throw to continue at 10-11.
Cullen missed two darts for the match and White sent it to a 25th and final leg. He didn't leave himself on any sort of finish with Cullen down to 71. Cullen hit 39 to leave double 16; but couldn't pin it.
White was down on 160; but left 20 after the second dart went into the 20. This gave Cullen three more darts at the win; he didn't make a mistake this time pinning it first time to win a remarkable game 13-12.
Schedule World Matchplay 2020
Monday July 20
Dave Chisnall (94.2) 6-10 (99.35) Vincent van der Voort
Ian White (93.44) 12-13 (90.41) Joe Cullen
Daryl Gurney v Ricky Evans
Gerwyn Price v Danny Noppert
Adrian Lewis v Steve Beaton