World Cup of Darts results: England and Netherlands storm into the second round

Rob Cross (Picture: Lawrence Lustig/PDC)
Rob Cross (Picture: Lawrence Lustig/PDC)

Netherlands and England laid down serious markers at the BetVictor World Cup of Darts as they powered into the second round with their new-look pairings.

There was no repeat of the shocks of day one in Hamburg, when Wales and Northern Ireland were stunned by a pair of 5/1 shots in Singapore and South Africa respectively, but the highly-fancied Austria and Australia both had to avoid scares.

England claimed a resounding 5-1 win over the potentially dangerous Philippines outfit of Lourence Ilagan and Noel Malicdem, with Michael Smith making his tournament debut alongside Rob Cross.

Cross, appearing in his second World Cup, kicked off the tie with a 106 checkout before Smith landed the winning double in four of the next five legs played to set up a clash with the Republic of Ireland.

England are chasing a fifth World Cup in its nine staging although obviously neither Cross nor Smith have ever been part of a winning pairing.

"It's been a dream of mine to play for my country, and it's up there with some of my biggest games," said Smith, the 2019 World Championship finalist.

"Every kid wants to represent their country in any sport and I've done it now - but we're here to win this, I'm going to make sure we take the medals home.

"We gelled well then and I hit some good scores at the right time and we got the job done."

Cross added: "I think without Michael tonight I would have struggled a bit more. I didn't play my best tonight and I don't think Michael did but we had good chemistry."

Their next opponents, represented by William O'Connor and Steve Lennon, easily saw off Greece 5-1 and they'll be no pushovers on Saturday.

"We're happy with the win and that's all we could aim for today," said O'Connor. "Both of us are capable of producing world class darts, we can beat anyone out there on our day so we'll have to wait and see.

"We'll be giving it our best and whoever beats us is going to have to earn it."

Defending champions Netherlands, who like England are also hoping to lift the trophy for a fifth time, thrashed Spain's Toni Alcinas and Cristo Reyes 5-0 thanks largely to an impressive debut from Jermaine Wattimena.

The Machine Gun ended four-time champion Raymond van Barneveld's record of representing the Dutch in every World Cup thanks to his superior world ranking and he fully justified his spot alongside Michael van Gerwen.

They averaged almost 93 and only allowed Spain three darts at a double in the match and they'll next meet Poland in the second round.

"I'm really pleased," said Van Gerwen. "Jermaine was phenomenal and it was a pleasure to play with him - he did really well and couldn't have done much better.

"We are here to defence our title and we're still favourites. I think we are strong as a team, we've started off really well and are confident."

Wattimena admitted: "I was a bit nervous but it felt really great. It's a lot of pressure but with Michael next to me, I feel more confidence."

The Polish pairing of Krzysztof Ratajski and Tytus Kanik had earlier proved too strong for the Czech Republic's Karel Sedlacek and Pavel Jirkal, missing just four of their nine darts at a double in a 5-2 victory.

That said, the highest checkout of the tournament so far was a 160 finish landed by Sedlacek in the sixth leg.

Simon Whitlock's dreams of helping Australia go one step further than when he led them to that unforgettable final in 2012 are just about alive after he held his nerve to complete a 14-dart deciding leg against Finland.

Marko Kantele and Kim Viljanen came from 2-1 down to lead 3-2 but the Aussies, also represented by Kyle Anderson, levelled before a 13-darter put them one away from victory.

The Finnish pair forced a decider but both Whitlock and Anderson hit 180s before the Wizard took out 70 in two darts.

"It means the world to us," said Whitlock. "We are so passionate about our country and this is a great win for us.

"To go 140 and 140 in the last leg you get a little bit of a cushion and we took full advantage of it. I'd love to win this tournament - we play well together and are a great team."

Austria's Mensur Suljovic and Zoran Lerchbacher had to come from 3-1 down against Russian pair Boris Koltsov and Aleksey Kadochnikov as they won a close encounter 5-3.

mounted a fightback from 3-1 down against Russia to claim a 5-3 victory as booked their second round place.

Lerchbacher's 138 checkout moved them 4-3 up before Suljovic sealed the victory on double 16 for a 13-dart leg.

Arguably the finest leg of the tournament so far came in the pivotal fifth of Canada's clash with Italy, when debutant Jim Long took out 106 when Italy had left themselves 41 after a 180.

Long and his partner Dawson Murschell went on to seal an entertaining 5-3 victory over Andrea Micheletti and Stefano Tomassetti to set up a clash with Australia.

USA are also through to the last 16 after Darin Young and Chuck Puleo eased to a 5-1 triumph over China's Xiaochen Zong and Yuanjun Liu. They will meet the Austrians on Saturday.

CLICK HERE FOR FULL TOURNAMENT GUIDE INCLUDING DRAW & TEAM LINE-UPS

World Cup of Darts: Friday results and schedule

Friday June 7 (7pm local time, 6pm BST)
TV Coverage: Sky Sports
First Round (Best of nine legs - doubles)

  • China 1-5 USA
  • Italy 3-5 Canada
  • Poland 5-2 Czech Republic
  • Republic of Ireland 5-1 Greece
  • England 5-1 Philippines
  • Austria 5-3 Russia
  • Australia 5-4 Finland
  • Netherlands 5-0 Spain

Saturday June 8
Afternoon Session (1.30pm local time, 12.30pm BST)
TV Coverage: Sky Sports
Second Round (Best of 3 points)
(Two best-of-7-leg singles matches & one best of 7 doubles decider if required)

  • South Africa v New Zealand
  • Singapore v Japan
  • Scotland v Sweden
  • Belgium v Germany

Evening Session (7pm local time, 6pm BST)
TV Coverage: Sky Sports
Second Round (Best of 3 points)
(2x best-of-7-leg singles matches & one best-of-7-leg doubles decider if required)

  • Australia v Canada
  • Austria v USA
  • England v Ireland
  • Netherlands v Poland

Sunday June 9
Afternoon Session (1pm local time, 12pm BST)
TV Coverage: Sky Sports
Quarter-Finals (Best of 3 points)
(2x best-of-7-leg singles matches & one best-of-7-leg doubles decider if required)

  • Four Matches

Evening Session (7pm local time, 6pm BST)
Semi-Finals (Best of 3 points)
(2x best-of-7-leg singles matches & one best-of-7-leg doubles decider if required)

  • Two Matches

Final (Best of 5 points)
(2x best-of-7-leg singles matches, one best-of-7-leg doubles, then reverse singles)

  • Winner SF 1 v Winner SF 2

CLICK HERE FOR FULL TOURNAMENT GUIDE INCLUDING DRAW & TEAM LINE-UPS

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