Former champions shocked at Ally Pally
Former world champions Rob Cross and Adrian Lewis were dumped out of the PDC World Darts Championship on Tuesday after suffering shock second round defeats.
It is the second year in a row that 2018 champion Cross has lost in round two, as he found World Grand Prix finalist Dirk van Duijvenbode too hot to handle, with the Dutchman producing seven 180s before taking out 99 in the decisive leg to seal a 3-2 triumph.
The 28-year-old, who is an aubergine farmer by day, was delighted with the victory that sees him advance through to the third round at Ally Pally for the first time, but he insists his ambitions extend much further than just reaching the last 32 and he is priced at 1212/1 to go on and lift the trophy.
"I felt so good on treble 19 in that last leg and I knew I had a good chance to take out that finish but I also knew I had to," van Duijvenbode told the PDC official website.
"It’s a big moment in a way but I want to go much further. I want to reach at least the quarter-finals. I don’t see why I can’t do that now."
Two-time champion Lewis, who won back-to-back titles in 2011 and 2012, also suffered an early exit, as he was comprehensively beaten 3-1 by American qualifier Danny Baggish, with 'Jackpot' failing to recover from missing 15 darts at doubles in the opening two sets.
There were no such problems for ninth-seed Dimitri Van den Bergh, who eased past 66-year-old Paul Lim 3-0, while Simon Whitlock, Devon Petersen, Joe Cullen, Brendan Dolan and Danny Noppert also progressed through to the last 32.
The second round action will continue on Wednesday, with another two-time former champion, Gary Anderson, set to get his latest title bid underway against Latvia's Madars Razma, while Nathan Apsinall, who has reached the semi-finals at Ally Pally in each of the last two years, will take on fellow Englishman Scott Waites.
Waites is 12/5 to win and Aspinall can be backed at 1/3 to come out on top.
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