The first round of the WDF World Darts Championship concludes inside the iconic Lakeside Country Club on Sunday when the unseeded players who are yet to step out onto the stage do so to battle it out for a place in the next stage of the competition.
The opening day of the tournament brought us some good darts with one or two markers laid down in both the men’s event and the women’s one. Plenty more big names are on show over the course of Sunday so there is much to look forward to.
We begin the day with two seasoned campaigners taking to the stage when Ian Jones meets the Canadian player David Cameron. Two men who will be making their debut on the Lakeside stage come up next when the Belgian player John Desreumaux takes on the Australian player Donovan Lottering who will be looking to emulate his countryman Justin Thompson in making it into the second round. The first women’s match of the day looks a juicy one as Lorraine Hyde takes on another Australian in the form of Tori Kewish.
We go back to the men’s draw to start the second part of the afternoon as the Italian debutant Francesco Raschini takes on the more experienced Dutch player Ryan de Vreede before two Englishmen battle it out as Lee Shewan faces a Jordan Brooks who arrives here with a big reputation. The afternoon concludes with a women’s match which sees the Lakeside regular Vicky Pruim taking on the New Zealand player Desi Mercer.
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We have a very juicy evening session where even though we are in the first round of the tournament a number of title challengers in both draws will be on show. We begin with a cracker of a match between Dave Parletti and Shaun McDonald before the women take centre stage again as Paula Murphy faces Veronika Ihasz. The tournament favourite in the men’s draw then walks onto the stage as Connor Scutt meets the Canadian player Shawn Burt.
The popular Steve Hine will open up the second part of the evening. He has experienced pretty much every stage in the world but will face a vastly less experienced opponent in Kevin Luke before the highlight of the first round of the women’s draw takes place as Laura Turner takes on the effective defending champion Mikuru Suzuki. The last match of a busy Sunday sees James Richardson, probably best known for knocking Raymond van Barneveld out of the PDC World Championship a few years ago, going up against Sebastian Steyer.
I’ll take one over the course of the afternoon and it comes in the final men’s match when Lee Shewan meets Jordan Brooks. There isn’t likely to be a lot between these two players as the odds would suggest but I think the extra activity of Brooks could serve him well here. We saw on Saturday that the players who have been active in the early part of 2022 had a significant edge on those who didn’t and that is a trend I expect to continue on Sunday.
These two are good mates which should make it a decent contest but Brooks went to Q-School which allows him to play on the Challenge Tour and he has picked up a few wins on that. Brooks made it to the final stage of Q-School and although he wasn’t able to pick up his card in the end it does show that his game is at a certain level. I don’t read a lot into the WDF rankings because the tour is still getting established but if they mean anything Brooks is the higher ranked of the two and I think he can come through here.
Back J.Brooks to beat L.Shewan for a 3/10 stake at 1.85 with Coral