The First Round action draws to a close at the 2021/22 World Darts Championship at Alexandra Palace on Tuesday afternoon….
The First Round action draws to a close at the 2021/22 World Darts Championship at Alexandra Palace on Tuesday afternoon.
Day seven of the sport’s show-piece event features the final two remaining First Round ties, followed by two fascinating Second Round encounters.
The remaining qualifiers will have been chomping at the bit to take to the iconic Ally Pally stage and now look to make their mark as the tournament nears the halfway stage.
Two debutants collide in the opening match of the afternoon as Welsh youngster Lewy Williams faces Japan’s Toyokazu Shibata.
Williams is one of five Welshmen in this year’s World Championship, having enjoyed a fine start to life as a PDC professional since securing his Tour Card at Qualifying School in February.
The 19-year-old, who defeated Jose de Sousa as an amateur qualifier at the 2020 UK Open, was beaten by De Sousa on his European Championship debut in October and is now eyeing a dream debut at Ally Pally.
Shibata, 35, won November’s PDC Asian Tour qualifier on home soil in Japan last month and was due to feature in this year’s World Cup of Darts, but was unable to travel.
Meanwhile, Jason Lowe looks to replicate last year’s heroics when he returns to the palace to face Sweden’s Daniel Larsson.
Lowe pulled off a sensational win over 2019 world finalist Michael Smith en route to the Last 32, before losing out to Devon Petersen, and returns having secured the 32nd and final qualification spot via the ProTour Order of Merit.
The Cradley Heath thrower starts out against five-time World Cup representative Larsson – whose sole previous victory on this stage came against Robert Thornton in the 2018/19 event.
The Second Round action then resumes with a clash between multiple major finalist Mervyn King and former World Championship quarter-finalist Ryan Joyce.
King is making his 15th consecutive PDC World Championship appearance, having twice finished runner-up at Lakeside.
The former BDO World Masters champion was a semi-finalist here back in 2009 and was also runner-up in this year’s Masters, narrowly missing out on a place in the Premier League.
The number 21 seed opens up against in-form Tynesider Joyce – who held his nerve to edge out Czech qualifier Roman Benecký in a last-set decider in Round One.
Joyce reached the knock-out stages of last month’s Grand Slam and was a semi-finalist on the ProTour earlier this season.
Dave Chisnall is the highest ranked player in action in the afternoon session as he starts out against Belgium’s Mike De Decker.
The number 14 seed enjoyed a ground-breaking run to the Semi-Finals behind closed doors 12 months ago, whitewashing Michael van Gerwen 5-0 in the Last Eight with a 107.3 average before eventually losing out to Gary Anderson.
Five times a PDC major finalist, ‘Chizzy’ has reached the Quarter-Finals of the UK Open and World Grand Prix this season and has not lost his opening match at the World Championship since 2017.
De Decker seized his unexpected late call-up to the event by defeating Darius Labanauskas in the opening round despite a remarkable nine-darter from the Lithuanian.
The Belgian youngster, a three-time Development Tour event winner, also featured in last month’s Grand Slam and is back into the world’s top 64 courtesy of his run here.
The action gets under way from 12.30pm GMT, with First Round and Second Round matches to be contested over the best five sets, best of five legs per set.
The tie break rule does not apply to First Round matches, meaning the fifth leg of a deciding set would be sudden death, while the final set in matches from Round Two onwards must be won by two clear legs, unless the score reaches 5-5, in which case a sudden-death leg will be played.
World Darts Championship 2021/22 Day Seven Schedule
Tuesday December 21
12.45pm Lewy Williams v Toyokazu Shibata (R1)
1.45pm Jason Lowe v Daniel Larsson (R1)
2.45pm Mervyn King v Ryan Joyce (R2)
3.45pm Dave Chisnall v Mike De Decker (R2)