US Darts Master Day One: Seeds All Safely Through
There were to be no shocks on day one of the Dafabet US Darts Masters at the Mandalay Bay in Las Vegas, although there were some decent efforts by the home qualifiers.
Defending champion Gary Anderson had early troubles, but eventually saw off the challenge of Elliot Milk.
Anderson went 2-0 down, but built up to a 96.81 average to come through unscathed.
Michael Van Gerwen was also forced to work in a 6-4 victory against Darin Young.
The Dutchman went 3-0 up, but Young came into the contest with a 105 checkout in leg four after Van Gerwen missed two darts at double 16, and “Big Daddy” punished several missed doubles from MVG to level the match at 4-4. Van Gerwen eventually pulled clear and saw out the win.
Peter Wright edged out former BDO World finalist, Jeff Smith 6-5, after missing fourteen darts at doubles.
By contrast, Smith was 100% on the outer ring, but Wright, after missing six darts to win 6-4, took out to reach the last eight.
Rob Cross posted an impressive 101.33 average in a 6-0 whitewash win over the below par Leonard Gates, who only had one unsuccessful dart at a double, compared to Cross’ steady 46.15% strike rate on the doubles.
Michael Smith again had bounce outs galore in his 6-4 win against Jim Long. The Canadian put up a decent fight, but the man from St Helens prevailed.
Daryl Gurney sailed through to round two with a 6-1 rout of Daniel Baggish. The qualifier was wasteful on the doubles, with only 11% success allowing “Superchin” to coast to victory.
UK Open Champion, Nathan Aspinall saw off the Canadian Shawn Brenneman by a 6-2 margin, a 121 checkout the highlight of his nights work.
In the first match of the session, Gerwyn Price overcame a spirited effort from former UK Open runner up, Gary Mawson to come through 6-4.
The Grand Slam Champion was wasteful on his doubles, where “The Mauler” took his chances where they came, only missing one dart at a double.