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Barney Takes Revenge Against Hopp As Caven AND Murnan Crash Out

It was an eventful night in Innsbruck on Day One of the European Darts Matchplay as Raymond van Barneveld took revenge on young Max Hopp and both players involved in the ProTour tussle for the World Grand Prix spot, Jamie Caven and Joe Murnan both crashed out in the first round. Here is how the day’s action unfolded.

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Host Nation Qualifier and Austrian star Rowby-John Rodriguez was full of confidence coming into his first round clash with Stefan Stoyke after receiving a World Series Finals invite, and it was the youngster who prevailed, securing a 6-3 to book his place in the next round.

Darren Johnson celebrated his 50th birthday in style with a 6-1 win over Zoran Lerchbacher. ‘Dynamite’ had to borrow some flights and stems from Mickey Mansell in order to play, but managed to record an emphatic win nevertheless.

A couple of good checkouts were to come in the next match between Tony Newell and Terry Temple, but it was Newell who booked his place in the second round, taking a 6-3 victory, taking out 79 and 111 along en-route to a place in the next round.

Joe Murnan’s doubling cost him, hitting five in eighteen attempts as he lost out in a last-leg decider against Mark Walsh. Walsh missed three match darts before the final, where he finally managed to close out the match in a game that could go a long way to deciding whether Joe Murnan makes the World Grand Prix or not.

Dirk van Duijvenbode got his match off to a woeful start against Robert Marijanovic, missing eleven darts at double in the first to legs of the game. The trouble on the doubles continued for both players, but it was Marijanovic who claimed a last-leg victory.

Northern Ireland World Cup star Mickey Mansell triumphed in the next match of the afternoon against Adam Hunt to book his place in the second round. The two averages were nearly identical at 84.29 and 84.18, but it was Mansell who prevailed, recording a 6-3 win.

European Tour debutant Paul Milford averaged 76.83 and was knocked out of the competition at the first round stage by Dimitri van den Bergh. He will face Ian White in the next round following his win.

Alan Norris set up a second round tie with last week’s European Tour winner Michael Smith following a 6-2 win over Armin Glazer, one of the Host Nation Qualifiers. Norris raced into a 3-0 lead, and never looked back, booking his place in the next round in the last of the afternoon’s action.

The evening session was opened up with a second straight defeat in two weeks in the European Tour for Gerwyn Price. This time the former rugby star went out of the competition to William O’Connor, who averaged 93 in a 6-4 win.

Andy Hamilton picked up a much-needed win against Dean Winstanley in what was a high-quality contest. The pair averaged 102 and 103 respectively as ‘The Hammer’ prevailed and won 6-3 to progress into the second round on Saturday.

Kevin Painter picked up another win in the European Tour, and this time it was against Roxy-James Rodriguez. ‘The Artist’ will face Terry Jenkins in the next round following a 6-3 win and a first round average of 88.

There was last-leg drama in the match between Malik Langendorf and Aaron Hardy. It wasn’t the highest of quality tungsten battles, but it was Langendorf who booked his ticket into the next round with a 6-5 win.

Jamie Caven will have perform well next in the Player’s Championship events next week if he is going to make the World Grand Prix after crashing out of the competition to David Pallett, who played extremely well in a 6-2 victory, averaging just over the 100 mark.

Belgian ace Ronny Huybrechts knocked out former Premier League star Wes Newton in a last-leg decider. ‘The Warrior’ in fact averaged six points more than Huybrechts, but the Belgian marched on to claim a second round spot and a match against Michael van Gerwen.

Darren Webster is in the World Grand Prix qualifying spots, and secured his place there with a convincing 6-2 win over home crowd-favourite Mensur Suljovic. A solid 96 averaged from Webster was enough to claim a 6-2 victory against ‘The Gentle’.

Raymond van Barneveld got the better of Max Hopp in the final game of the evening session in Austria after their match in Mulheim last week resulted in Barney being knocked out of the competition. A 97.58 averaged was enough to see the German off this time in an assured performance from Barney.

Jamie Caven Joe Murnan max hopp

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