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PDC World Darts Championship, Day Two – Preview, how to watch, order of play and predictions

The Main Event

The first Saturday at the 2024 PDC World Darts Championship is headlined by a two-time winner as Gary Anderson looks to kickstart his bid for a first title since 2016.

Scottish legend Anderson, who has reached five PDC World Championship finals and clinched back-to-back triumphs in 2015 and 2016, fell in the third round of the tournament to Chris Dobey last year.

Having been written off by many after that defeat, the Flying Scotsman has enjoyed a resurgent 2023, winning a hat-trick of Players Championship titles before making the quarter-finals at the Grand Slam of Darts last month.

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Once there, Anderson pushed eventual champion Luke Humphries closer than anyone else in the knockouts, losing a classic encounter 16-14 after building leads of 5-1 and 8-4.

Anderson admitted his age and declining mental stamina played a part in that loss, and that has to be a concern ahead of this three-week tournament, but few players boast his combination of strong recent form and experience on the biggest stage.

The 52-year-old will certainly fancy his chances of a deep run, and PDC president Barry Hearn thinks he has at least an outside chance of going all the way.

“Gary’s come from nowhere. He’s got a fishing lake, he leads a nice life,” Hearn said. “These last six months, he’s really discovered his love of darts, and he has the stage experience.

“He’s a strange type of competitor as far as he gives the impression that he doesn’t really care.

“There’s nothing quite like that rush of adrenaline when you’re competing at the sharp end. I think he’s rediscovered that recently. He won two Pro Tour events in a short space of time recently.”

Anderson will face the winner of Friday’s meeting between Simon Whitlock and Paolo Nebrida in his second-round contest, and should he progress through the bracket, Gerwyn Price, Peter Wright and James Wade could lie in wait in a stacked quarter two.

In the afternoon session, 2021 semi-finalist and this year’s 11th seed Dave Chisnall will face Cameron Menzies or Rusty-Jake Rodriguez for a place in the third round, having been tipped for a strong run after capturing five ranking titles this year.

Order of Play

Afternoon session (from 12:30)

Lee Evans v Sandro Eric Sosing (round one)

Connor Scutt v Krzysztof Kciuk (round one)

Jules van Dongen v Darren Penhall (round one)

Dave Chisnall v Cameron Menzies or Rusty-Jake Rodriguez (round two)

Evening session (from 19:00)

Jamie Hughes v David Cameron (round one)

Keane Barry v Reynaldo Rivera (round one)

Scott Williams v Haruki Muramatsu (round one)

Gary Anderson v Simon Whitlock or Paolo Nebrida (round two)

How to watch

The PDC World Championship is being screened on Sky Sports in the UK. Saturday’s action from Alexandra Palace will be shown on Sky Sports Arena from 12:30, with Sky Sports Main Event also carrying the evening session from 20:30 onwards.

Predictions

Evans, Van Dongen and Scutt will all be considered big favourites to advance in the afternoon session, with the latter of that trio looking to tee up a meeting with 2021 champion Price in the next round.

Barry will fancy his chances of setting up a clash with Michael van Gerwen when he takes on Rivera, then it’ll be all eyes on a legend of the sport as Anderson steps up to the oche.

Anderson could have a battle on his hands if world number 43 Whitlock is his first opponent, but we’re backing him to please the Ally Pally crowd on his way to round three.

Harry Carr
Harry Carr
Harry is a freelance sports journalist with experience of working for the Racing Post, Stats Perform, Opta Analyst and more, covering major events across all sports but holding a particular love for the beautiful game.
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