Ladbrokes 2013 World Championships; Night 7 Games
I’m having to rush as I write this, as I was at the darts last night, with a train home meaning I wasn’t back till about 2.30am. A lie in (half day off work to get over it), and I feel almost human again.
Last night was something special for me, getting to watch my mate Justin Pipe win 3-0 while sitting in the ‘top table’ in VIP. I also spent some time for the first time ever in the practice room, where I watched Dennis Priestley, Simon Whitlock, and Colin Lloyd warm up. I got to chat a little with Simon and Jaws – which made my night.
And just so you know if you think it’s all glamour in VIP as a guest of a player – the players room bar is the SAME PRICES as the main hall for the fans, £4.20 a pint, and it’s the same beer/cider too. So no special treatment. The people in the VIP bar for hospitality are treated very well though, with a proper free bar and lots of nibbles n food. I actually had a few sneaky nibbles myself as I walked through the bar to go out to the seating area, but don’t tell anyone!
Tonight is the final night of round 1 (it does seem to go on forever), with a few exciting names… including man of the moment Michael van Gerwen. The legendary figure of Paul Lim (who was there last night watching) – the first man to hit a 9 darter live on TV in this country.
You may not have heard of Darren Webster, but I can tell you he’s a tidy player – I’m sure he’s beaten Justin Pipe on the floor this year, and he’s won enough to qualify for the worlds, which shows he’s a good player.
Kim Huybrechts has drawn his ‘stable mate’ Scott Rand – both are managed by the same man Mark Elkin, and I know his must have been gutted when their names came out of the hat together.
Thursday December 20 (7pm-12am)
Mark Walsh (88.58) 3-1 Darren Webster
Paul Lim (79.6) 4-1 Mohd Latif Sapup (P)
Hmm.. Paul will need to pick that game up for his 1st round proper. Could see him lost 3-0.. and with only one or two legs taken vs MvG.
Kim Huybrechts (98.79) 2-3 Scott Rand (97.82)
Rand and Huybrechts both managed by the same geezer (Mark Elkin).. so this is a tough one for both players – and probably more their manager! Kim of course recently lost his father, and was thinking about pulling out of the event totally.. but the whole family are darts mad, and Kim knows his dad would have wanted him to play. WOW. Rand hits 7 perfect darts.. but loses the leg to Huybrechts who hits a bull for a 127 c/o. Quality stuff. A real yo-yo game this. Each player dominating a set. Good game this.. 100 ave Kim, 96 ave Rand. 2-2 and 1-1. Scott wins a high quality game – a surprise from some, but it was well earned.
Vincent van der Voort 3-0 Stuart Kellett
Double troubles from both players. Stuart Kellett was there last night getting used to the venue n crowd. 1-1 set 1. Plenty of effort on that stage.. VvdV takes the 2nd set 3-2. VvdV goes 2-0 up against Stuart in set 3… he’s 1 leg away from the game. The dutchman wins – a learning experience for young Kellett, I’m sure he’ll be back on a big stage again next year.
Michael van Gerwen (90.64) 3-0 Paul Lim
OK so how did we doubt Paul Lim? 9 leg whitewash for MvG? Not now. 12 darter from Lim in leg 1. Lim stays a break ahead 2-1 up in set 1. MvG hits a fantastic 180.. 1 mm between em all. MvG manages to sneak the set, but the legend Paul Lim throwing some great darts. Lovely 170 from Paul Lim. He’s still got it… but then MvG goes 2-1 up set 3.. MvG wins 3-0.. Paul Lim scored well in the game, but MvG was always the favourite.