Magic darts from Wizard

Injured Australian lays down early marker at Alexandra Palace

Last Updated: 22/12/11 11:33am

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A limping Simon Whitlock averaged 105 during a 3-0 demolition of Dennis Smith in the first round of the PDC World Championship.

The Australian was playing for the first time since breaking his ankle in August and had to hobble up and down the oche, but it did not hamper his darts.

After winning the opening leg against the throw, fifth seed Whitlock closed out the first set 3-1 with a 14 darter.

He doubled his advantage with a second-set whitewash, although Smith did miss seven doubles in the second leg.

"I've got a broken leg but not a broken heart - I can still throw darts!"
Simon Whitlock Quotes of the week

And 'Wizard' Whitlock, runner-up two years ago, dished out more of the same in the third set, checkouts of 125 and 83 helping him advance to a second-round meeting with 28th seed Steve Beaton.

"I'm absolutely amazed because a week ago I couldn't even hit three 20s. I don't know how I did it," Whitlock told Sky Sports.

"I've got a lot to lose, I'm defending £100,000 (in the rankings) and I want to be in the Premier League.

"My name hasn't even been mentioned for the Premier League and I want that so bad you wouldn't believe it. I'm just so determined to do well, even with a broken leg."

On the injury, he added: "Just walking in the last week has been hard work for me, so I'm amazed I've actually got to the stage to play.

"I've got a broken leg but not a broken heart - I can still throw darts!"

Looking the Part

Former champion John Part was another to impress, racing to a 3-0 win over John Henderson.

Part dropped just two legs as Henderson failed to rise to the occasion on his Alexandra Palace debut.

The Canadian's reward is a second-round encounter with Richie Burnett.

Scott Rand whitewashed 20th seed Andy Smith in the first match of the evening.

Rand reeled off nine straight legs to send his fellow Englishman packing in quick time and earn a second-round date with 13th seed Mervyn King.

He was helped by Smith's profligacy on the doubles, the 'Pie Man' missing with all nine attempts.

"I really enjoyed playing on the big stage tonight and I'm here to win this Championship, not make up the numbers," said Rand, who combines darts with his job as a lorry driver.

"I take the game seriously and want to make darts my full-time occupation."

Devon Petersen came through not one but two nail-biting matches to complete the second round line-up.

The South African triumphed 4-3 in his preliminary match against Jose de Sousa of Portugal in a deciding leg, despite hitting only four of 23 attempts on a double.

He was, however, much sharper with his finishing when he returned to the oche to take on Steve Brown, battling back from two legs down in the deciding set to beat the Bristolian 3-2.

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