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Anderson Continues Lethal Form

Anderson in action at the oche.


Gary Anderson picked up where he left off at the PDC World Championships with a magical performance to beat Justin Pipe in the opening round of the Players Championship Finals on Thursday.

The Alexandra Palace runner-up hit five maximums on his way to a 6-4 victory with a 102.93 three-dart average. Now he faces the 2004 World Championship runner-up Kevin Painter in the second round.

Painter edged a nip-and-tuck battle with Wayne Jones to book his place in the second round but will be well aware that he needs to up his average from a meagre 89.46 if he is to challenge one of the game’s in-form players.

"I know just how good Justin is and I was a bit rusty because it's a month since I've played competitively,” confessed Anderson.

"I was pleased with how I scored and it's a good start, and I'll be looking forward to playing Kevin on Saturday night."

Also in action this Saturday is Andy Smith who continued his run of good form with a 6-2 demolition of world number nine Ronnie Baxter. Smith hit six out of six doubles in a flawless display of finishing to set up a last-16 clash with Jamie Caven.

Smith is given the nod by the bookmakers that quote odds of 5/6 with Caven available to back at the reciprocal.

Dennis Priestley showed that he can still mix it with the big boys at the spritely age of 60 by battling back from the brink of defeat to beat Andy Hamilton 6-5. He now faces Colin Lloyd in the second round after ‘Jaws’ punished Jelle Klaasen for his missed doubles to win his opening round match 6-4.

The bookmakers are again predicting a tight match with each player available to back at around the even money mark with all of the online betting firms.

Once again all eyes will be on Gary Anderson this Saturday as darts fans look to see whether the Scot can really become a consistent challenger to Phil Taylor’s waning dominance in the game.

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