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World Matchplay 2019 Day One preview and order of play: Flying Scotsman launches title defence

Red hot Wright completes title hat-trick at Players Championship 20

Jamie Shaw in PDC Darts News 17 Jul 2019
Wright makes it three wins on the spin (credit:Michael Cooper/PDC)
Peter Wright continued his phenomenal run of form by securing a third title in the space of five days with victory at Players Championship 20 in Barnsley, blitzing Joe Cullen 8-1 in the final.
Wright had claimed his first singles title of the season at the German Masters on Saturday before following it up with glory in Tuesday’s Players Championship 19.
The world number six then picked up from where he left off as he posted six consecutive ton-plus averages and won 34 of his last 38 legs to extend his unbeaten run to 18 matches and take the £10,000 title.
“I wanted to up my 101 average from yesterday and I know Joe is warming up for the Matchplay so I had to be at my best.” said Wright.
“The change in my darts is making things a lot easier. If the first dart goes in the treble 20 and I don’t follow it with the other two, I’m disappointed.
“Winning three titles in five days is definitely a confidence boost going into the World Matchplay and it should be a great tournament.”
Wright began his route to glory by defeating Latvia’s Madars Razma 6-4 before surviving a scare against Alan Norris to prevail in a last-leg decider with a 103 average.
The colourful Scot posted another 103 average as he whitewashed Matt Clark and raised his level further in sweeping aside Jeffrey de Zwaan 6-1 with a 109 average.
Devon Petersen was Snakebite’s next victim as he romped to a 6-0 whitewash with a 108.7 average to book his place in the Semi-Finals – where he ended the resurgent run of Adrian Gray with a 7-2 triumph.
Wright raced to the opening five legs of the final without reply before Cullen finally got off the mark via tops.
The Scot then took out 76 and followed up with a stunning 146 checkout to extend his lead to 7-1 before sealing the deal on tops to end with an average of 105.
Cullen mounted a charge to his first PDC ranking final for two years after victories over Tony Newell, Wayne Jones, Jermaine Wattimena, Gerwyn Price, Rob Cross and Adrian Lewis to mark a timely return to form ahead of the upcoming Betfred World Matchplay.
Elsewhere, Adrian Gray reached his first PDC ranking Semi-Final since 2012, with the Hastings ace defeating the likes of Max Hopp, Justin Pipe, Nathan Aspinall and Steve Beaton along the way.
Two-time World Champion Lewis warmed up for Sunday’s Blackpool show-down with Glen Durrant by reaching the Last Four with a run which included high quality wins over Luke Humphries, Dimitri van den Bergh and Jan Dekker.
South Africa’s Devon Petersen, who will join the Sky Sports team as a pundit during the World Matchplay, enjoyed a run to his first PDC Quarter-Final since 2015.
Christian Kist dispatched Gary Anderson and Dave Chisnall en route to the Last 16, while Durrant, Michael Smith, Simon Whitlock and Chris Dobey were among the notable First Round casualties.

Players Championship 20 Results

Wednesday July 17
First Round
Ian White 6-2 Yordi Meeuwisse
Mark Dudbridge 6-4 Ted Evetts
Jose Justicia 6-0 Ross Smith
Mark Webster 6-5 Robert Owen
Ryan Searle 6-4 Simon Whitlock
Nathan Derry 6-2 Ritchie Edhouse
Steve Beaton 6-3 Mickey Mansell
Dave Prins 6-4 Shaun Carroll
Nathan Aspinall 6-2 Ronny Huybrechts
Benito van de Pas 6-5 Luke Woodhouse
Mervyn King 6-2 Toni Alcinas
Steve Lennon 6-5 Mario Robbe
Justin Pipe 6-5 Ricky Evans
Darius Labanauskas 6-3 Ron Meulenkamp
Adrian Gray 6-4 Max Hopp
Marko Kantele 6-5 Terry Temple
Peter Wright 6-4 Madars Razma
Alan Norris 6-1 Michael Barnard
Jamie Bain 6-4 Darren Webster
Matt Clark 6-5 Gary Eastwood
Jonny Clayton 6-4 Darren Beveridge
James Richardson 6-3 Vincent Kamphuis
Jeffrey De Zwaan 6-4 Arron Monk
Boris Koltsov 6-3 Andrew Gilding
Daryl Gurney 6-4 Ryan Meikle
Conan Whitehead 6-0 Joe Murnan
Mike van Duivenbode 6-4 Vincent van der Voort
Devon Petersen 6-1 Harry Ward
Peter Hudson 6-4 Michael Smith
Bradley Brooks 6-3 George Killington
Kirk Shepherd 6-5 Jamie Hughes
Jelle Klaasen 6-0 Kevin Burness
Gerwyn Price 6-1 Rowby-John Rodriguez
Gavin Carlin 6-5 Martin Schindler
Kyle Anderson 6-4 Gabriel Clemens
Dirk van Duijvenbode 6-2 David Pallett
Joe Cullen 6-4 Tony Newell
Wayne Jones 6-5 Ryan Joyce
Jermaine Wattimena 6-4 Eddie Dootson
Tytus Kanik 6-1 Scott Baker
Krzysztof Ratajski 6-1 Geert Nentjes
Kim Huybrechts 6-2 Niels Zonneveld
John Henderson 6-3 Carl Wilkinson
Robert Thornton 6-4 Mark Wilson
Rob Cross 6-2 Richard North
Raymond van Barneveld 6-5 Vincent Van der Meer
Alan Tabern 6-5 Danny Noppert
Matthew Edgar 6-1 Jose De Sousa
Adrian Lewis 6-2 Maik Kuivenhoven
Christian Bunse 6-4 Zoran Lerchbacher
Keegan Brown 6-3 Simon Stevenson
Luke Humphries 6-3 Jamie Lewis
Steve West 6-4 Glen Durrant
Cristo Reyes 6-4 Josh Payne
Reece Robinson 6-5 Chris Dobey
Dimitri Van den Bergh 6-3 Ryan Harrington
Dave Chisnall 6-1 Andy Boulton
Davy Van Baelen 6-5 William O’Connor
Gary Anderson 6-3 James Wilson
Christian Kist 6-5 Jonathan Worsley
Mensur Suljovic 6-4 Mark McGeeney
Adam Hunt 6-3 Barrie Bates
Stephen Bunting 6-5 Brendan Dolan
Jan Dekker 6-1 Stephen Burton
Second Round
Ian White 6-4 Mark Dudbridge
Jose Justicia 6-3 Mark Webster
Ryan Searle 6-4 Nathan Derry
Steve Beaton 6-3 Dave Prins
Nathan Aspinall 6-1 Benito van de Pas
Steve Lennon 6-0 Mervyn King
Justin Pipe 6-3 Darius Labanauskas
Adrian Gray 6-1 Marko Kantele
Peter Wright 6-5 Alan Norris
Matt Clark 6-5 Jamie Bain
Jonny Clayton 6-1 James Richardson
Jeffrey De Zwaan 6-2 Boris Koltsov
Daryl Gurney 6-2 Conan Whitehead
Devon Petersen 6-5 Mike van Duivenbode
Bradley Brooks 6-3 Peter Hudson
Jelle Klaasen 6-1 Kirk Shepherd
Gerwyn Price 6-4 Gavin Carlin
Dirk van Duijvenbode 6-2 Kyle Anderson
Joe Cullen 6-3 Wayne Jones
Jermaine Wattimena 6-4 Tytus Kanik
Krzysztof Ratajski 6-0 Kim Huybrechts
John Henderson 6-0 Robert Thornton
Rob Cross 6-4 Raymond van Barneveld
Matthew Edgar 6-5 Alan Tabern
Adrian Lewis 6-1 Christian Bunse
Luke Humphries 6-2 Keegan Brown
Steve West 6-5 Cristo Reyes
Dimitri Van den Bergh 6-1 Reece Robinson
Dave Chisnall 6-3 Davy Van Baelen
Christian Kist 6-4 Gary Anderson
Mensur Suljovic 6-0 Adam Hunt
Jan Dekker 6-3 Stephen Bunting
Losers: £500
Last 32
Jose Justicia 6-4 Ian White
Steve Beaton 6-3 Ryan Searle
Nathan Aspinall 6-5 Steve Lennon
Adrian Gray 6-5 Justin Pipe
Peter Wright 6-0 Matt Clark
Jeffrey De Zwaan 6-2 Jonny Clayton
Devon Petersen 6-3 Daryl Gurney
Jelle Klaasen 6-3 Bradley Brooks
Gerwyn Price 6-2 Dirk van Duijvenbode
Joe Cullen 6-5 Jermaine Wattimena
Krzysztof Ratajski 6-4 John Henderson
Rob Cross 6-3 Matthew Edgar
Adrian Lewis 6-4 Luke Humphries
Dimitri Van den Bergh 6-3 Steve West
Christian Kist 6-5 Dave Chisnall
Jan Dekker 6-2 Mensur Suljovic
Losers: £1,000
Last 16
Steve Beaton 6-3
Adrian Gray 6-4 Nathan Aspinall
Peter Wright 6-1 Jeffrey De Zwaan
Devon Petersen 6-5 Jelle Klaasen
Joe Cullen 6-2 Gerwyn Price
Rob Cross 6-0 Krzysztof Ratajski
Adrian Lewis 6-5 Dimitri van den Bergh
Jan Dekker 6-3 Christian Kist
Losers: £1,500
Adrian Gray 6-4 Steve Beaton
Peter Wright 6-0 Devon Petersen
Joe Cullen 6-4 Rob Cross
Adrian Lewis 6-2 Jan Dekker
Losers: £2,250
Peter Wright 7-2 Adrian Gray 
Joe Cullen 7-2 Adrian Lewis
Losers: £3,000
Peter Wright 8-1 Joe Cullen
Winner: £10,000
Runner-up: £6,000