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PDC World Matchplay Preview

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The Debutants

Kyle Anderson

The Australian darter took the plunge in 2015 and decided to base himself over here in the UK after an impressive couple of showing’s in the World Championship’s in recent seasons. His decision has paid off as he qualified for the Matchplay on the final weekend of qualifying and will face-off against former winner James Wade in the first round in what could be a tricky opener for the ‘Machine’. Anderson has risen to 44 in the world rankings and is likely to break into the top 32 sooner rather than later and could quite easily cause a shock against Wade, who has been known to be a slow starter in tournaments.

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Benito van de Pas

This cool young Dutchman could be the next in a long line of darter’s to break through and challenge the top table in the coming years. At just 22 years of age, van de Pas has already risen into the world’s top 32 players and will likely be qualifying automatically for all major TV tournaments over the next few years. Unluckily for the Dutchman, he has been drawn against world number one Michael van Gerwen and will face a battle to make it through to the next round but it will be vital experience for the young Dutchman and could hand MVG a shock if he is not at the top of his form.

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Keegan Brown

Another youngster who has fought his way into the limelight, Brown is another with a bright future in the game and has already shown what he can do in major tournaments having won the Under-21 World crown in 2014 and also having an impressive debut at the Grand Slam of Darts in 2014. He qualified for the tournament fairly comfortably and will face Scotland’s Robert Thornton in the first round of the tournament. Thornton is an experienced campaigner in tournaments but should he make a slow start, Brown has been known to get on a role and improving all the time, he could cause a shock.

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Gerwyn Price

Price made the switch from professional Rugby Union to Darts just a few short years ago and it seems to be paying off for the Welshman who has been a steady force on the tour all year and qualified with ease. He will come up against the in-form Michael Smith who is showing he belongs with the worlds best but has also shown at times a penchant for a meltdown. If Price can reel off a few legs on the trot, he could easily get into Smith’s mind and cause a first round shock in Blackpool.

Lawrence Lustig/PDC
Lawrence Lustig/PDC

Joe Murnan

The 31 year old Bolton darter caused a stir back in May when he won Players Championship 10 on the pro tour that catapulted him into the top 64 and also saw him beat established players such as Stephen Bunting and Dave Chisnall along the way before facing his World Matchplay first round opponent in the final, Adrian Lewis and taking home the cheque for £10k and all this without actually having a tour card. He has his work cut out in Blackpool though as Lewis will want revenge for his loss and is the heavy favourite to make it into the next round.

Jamie Caven MVG pdc Winter Gardens

About Andy Moore

Andy is Chief Editor of The Sports Lowdown and a sports journalist by profession having written for both print publications such as The Sun, The Rugby Paper as well as various online digital sites such as The Aviva Premiership, The Women's Super League plus many many more.

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