PDC World Darts Championship results: Rob Cross survives scare as Lisa Ashton loses 3-1 to Jan Dekker

Lisa Ashton was beaten but did herself proud (Picture: Lawrence Lustig/PDC)
Lisa Ashton was beaten but did herself proud (Picture: Lawrence Lustig/PDC)

Rob Cross defied Jeffrey de Zwaan's average of 106 to reach the third round of the PDC World Darts Championship while Lisa Ashton lost to Jan Dekker.

Scroll down for full results, highlights & schedule

Voltage heats up

Rob Cross answered his critics - but vindicated (for the time being at least!) why our tipster Chris Hammer backed him at 22/1 to defend his title - by overcoming Jeffrey de Zwaan in a compelling second-round clash at Alexandra Palace.

The defending champion has endured a disappointing season in comparison to what many would expect of someone who reached the top of the spot 12 months ago and a tough draw pitted him against a player who had knocked Michael van Gerwen out of both the UK Open and World Matchplay this season.

De Zwaan also has momentum from his 3-0 first-round win earlier in the night against Nitin Kumar and it looked like he was going to catch Voltage cold when wrapping up the opening set by winning all three legs with an average of 107.

However, despite the pressure building, Cross quickly found his stride to edge the second 3-2 thanks to a pair of 14-dart legs - one of which included his set clinching 96 checkout - and one of 12.

The Hastings man, who has 'only' won two PDC titles this season, turned on the style in the third set, which he closed out with a superb 121 checkout on the bullseye to complete a 12-darter.

Cross, who averaged 102, rattled through the fourth set 3-1 to seal victory but de Zwaan can count himself unfortunate to suffer defeat with an average of 106.9 - the second highest losing average in World Championship history.

The highest losing average was Raymond van Barneveld's 109 in his semi-final defeat to Michael van Gerwen in the 2017 edition.

He also hit five 180s compared to Voltage's four although the defending champion's checkout percentage of 56% just about proved the difference.

"I thought that my finishing got me through," said Cross, who famously won the Sid Waddell Trophy on his debut in January.

"I think I had been written off on social media but that goes with the territory and Jeffrey was fantastic so I'm really pleased.

"He is one of the best players in the world in my opinion but you can't buy the grit I showed in that match.

"If someone is going to beat me here they are going to have to play really well because I can play better and I believe I can win it again."

Ashton bows out

Lisa Ashton became the first English woman to grace the stage in the PDC World Darts Championship, and she made Jan Dekker work hard for his 3-1 victory.

Ashton produced a remarkable first set, averaging over 107, registering checkouts of 110 and 121 and taking all three legs to underline once more that she was worthy of her place in the field.

Dekker stopped the rot with a vital dart at double eight in the first leg of the second set, which he took without reply, and when he edged a tight third it appeared Ashton had run her race.

The BDO women's world champion fought back to take the first leg of the fourth set before Dekker found his range and sealed victory by a scoreline which arguably flattered him somewhat.

The pair both averaged 88 while Dekker managed two maximums and his finishing was slightly better with a checkout percentage of 47% compared to Ashton's 42%.

"I had to work really hard for that," said Dekker. "Lisa played awesome in the first set but I felt a lot better after winning the second set and was very happy to go all the way and win from there.

"There was a lot of media attention around this match, which made it harder so I was very relieved at the end."

Dekker will take on Mervyn King next Thursday in round two.

Ashton said: "I feel good but also a little bit gutted. I'm pleased with how I played but felt I could have taken a few more chances. I think I've done the Ladies proud."

Schindler's missed...

Promising young German, Martin Schindler, was the victim of a minor upset as New Zealand's Cody Harris won their clash 3-2.

Harris had been quietly fancied owing to some high-profile wins this year, but Schindler is a rising star and was still odds-on favourite to advance.

After the first two sets were shared, Harris took the lead again by winning the third without conceding a leg, before Schindler kept his hopes alive by edging the fourth.

Throwing first in the final set, Harris held firm to move within a leg of the second round and then stepped up to produce his best darts of the night, taking out 104 for a break of throw and a hard-fought victory.

Harris will now face Welshman Jamie Lewis, the 28th seed, in the second round.

“I’m really happy to get the win,” said 33-year-old Harris, a winner on the PDC Unicorn Challenge Tour in 2018.

“I’m over here chasing the dream, while my partner and children are back home in New Zealand and this is all for them.

“Anything is possible. You dream it first and then you achieve it. We all saw that from Rob Cross winning last year.”

Unbelievable Jeff!

It's no easy task to kick off the PDC World Darts Championship, but Jeffrey de Zwaan made it look that way as he beat Nitin Kumar 3-0.

The Dutch youngster could afford to be profligate on doubles as his superior scoring meant for a one-sided victory which began with four legs on the spin.

With the first three having earned him the opening set, De Zwaan then missed three darts to go 2-0 up in the second as Kumar got on the board.

However, De Zwaan took the next leg in 11 darts before a 70 finish saw him take a 2-0 lead in sets, and while his focus slipped in the third the result was already beyond doubt.

De Zwaan returns to the stage later in the evening to face reigning champion Rob Cross and, with this behind him, will spy an upset.

Thursday's results & Friday schedule

Thursday December 13
First round/second round (best of five sets)

  • Jeffrey de Zwaan 3-0 Nitin Kumar (R1)
  • Martin Schindler 2-3 Cody Harris (R1)
  • Jan Dekker 3-1 Lisa Ashton (R1)
  • Rob Cross v Jeffrey De Zwaan (R2)

Friday December 14
Afternoon Session (1230 GMT)
First/Second Round (Best of 5 sets)
TV Coverage: Sky Sports Darts

  • Michael Barnard v Jose De Sousa (R1)
  • Alan Tabern v Raymond Smith (R1)
  • Paul Nicholson v Kevin Burness (R1)
  • Jamie Lewis v Cody Harris (R2)

Evening Session (1900)
First/Second Round (Best of 5 sets)
TV Coverage: Sky Sports Darts

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