Gary Anderson fends off Jermaine Wattimena upset at the World Championship as Van Gerwen sends home Hopp

A relieved Anderson celebrates (credit:Lawrence Lustig/PDC)

Gary Anderson survived a huge scare to see off Jermaine Wattimena in a tense tie break for a place in the Last 16 of the 2018/19 World Darts Championship, while Michael van Gerwen powered past Max Hopp.

Anderson, the 2015 and 2016 World Champion, saw Wattimena fight back from 3-1 down to force a deciding set before missing the bullseye for a 170 checkout to snatch victory and allow the Scot off the hook.

"I should've had that game wrapped up but I made a complete mess of it and fair play to Jermaine he came back well," said Anderson, who will face Vincent van der Voort or Chris Dobey in the Last 16.

"It's getting harder and harder to keep winning nowadays with the standard of players around, but I'm still going.

"This is one of those tournaments where anything could happen but I'm going to give it my best to win title number three."

Despite losing the opening set which included a 142 checkout from the Dutchman, fourth seed Anderson appeared to be running away with the tie as he stormed into a 3-1 lead.

However, rapid-fire Dutchman Wattimena clicked into gear and fired in a stunning 11-dart leg to win the fifth set 3-1, and, after Anderson missed five match darts, Wattimena won three successive legs to take the match to a gripping decider.

A dramatic end to the contest saw Wattimena go 2-0 up and miss the bullseye for a roof-raising 170 before Anderson battled back to take it to a tie-break.

With the pair tied at 3-3, Anderson struck a crucial break of throw and then threw a 14-dart leg to win a classic contest.

Van Gerwen also continued his bid for a third world title with a convincing 4-1 win over German number one Hopp.

The world number one was at his relentless best as he dropped just one leg on his way to a 3-0 lead, capping off set three with a magnificent 170 checkout.

German Open champion Hopp battled back, winning set four 3-0 before taking a 2-0 lead in set five, only for Van Gerwen to reel off three consecutive legs to continue his bid for the Sid Waddell trophy.

"I think I was in control for most of the match, I got a bit sloppy after I went 3-0 up but I never felt in danger," said Van Gerwen.

"This tournament is like no other, the atmosphere is special and you have to prepare and make sure you play your best game on the big stage.

"I think I played okay in the first set but after that I was maybe too confident. My back is hurting a bit, it's not a big issue and it doesn't give me issues on the stage but it's just annoying, I've got a few days' rest now to make sure I get better."

Earlier in the day, another seven-set epic saw Jamie Lewis knock out fifth seed Daryl Gurney 4-3 after a thrilling tie-break.

Last year's semi-finalist Lewis continued his phenomenal Alexandra Palace form as he lost just two legs to take a 2-0 lead, before missing three darts at double for a 3-0 lead as Gurney got his first set on the board to halve the deficit.

Lewis regained his two-set advantage, before Players Championship Finals winner Gurney won eight of the next nine legs to put him a leg within of victory in the deciding seventh set.

However, Welshman Lewis came roaring back with four consecutive legs, three of which were won in 14 darts, to win a classic contest and advance to the last 16.

"I don't know how I won that game, I thought I was gone when Daryl went 2-0 up in the seventh set," said Lewis, who will play Dave Chisnall in round four.

"I like playing on the big stage and if I could save my best form for one tournament then I would pick this one which I've managed to do last year and this year."

Chisnall stormed his way to a 4-0 rout of Kim Huybrechts to reach the last 16 for the fifth time in eight years.

A sparkling performance saw from world number 12 Chisnall saw him land a magnificent 110 checkout under pressure to go 2-0 up, before dropping just one more leg on his way to an impressive victory.

Ryan Joyce and Ryan Searle continued their dream debuts with victories over Alan Norris and William O'Connor respectively.

Joyce, who dumped out eighth seed Simon Whitlock 3-0 in round two came from two sets down to defeat Norris 4-3 thanks to some clinical finishing to set up a meeting with James Wade or Keegan Brown.

A convincing display from Searle, who defeated number seven seed Mensur Suljovic in round two, saw him run out a 4-1 winner over William O'Connor, and he will now face Michael Smith or John Henderson.

World Darts Championship 2018/19 Results


Saturday December 22

Third Round

Afternoon Session
Ryan Joyce 4-3 Alan Norris
Dave Chisnall 4-0 Kim Huybrechts
Daryl Gurney 3-4 Jamie Lewis
 
Evening Session
Ryan Searle 4-1 William O'Connor
Gary Anderson 4-3 Jermaine Wattimena
Michael van Gerwen 4-1 Max Hopp



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Gary Anderson fends off Jermaine Wattimena upset at the World Championship as Van Gerwen sends home Hopp

Gary Anderson survived a huge scare to see off Jermaine Wattimena in a tense tie break for a place in the Last 16 of the 2018/19 World Darts Championship, while Michael van Gerwen powered past Max Hopp.

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