AUSTRALIA THROUGH ROUND ONE

Australia produced a no-nonsense display as they cruised past Hong Kong 5-1.

Simon Whitlock and Kyle Anderson, flying the flag for Australia for a third consecutive year, proved too strong for Royden Lam and Ho-Yin Shek as they set up a clash with Spain in round two.

“Tonight was a good start to our campaign but it is just a start,” said Anderson.

“When it all comes together we are capable of playing even better than that we did tonight and hopefully we will see that in the business end of the tournament.
“The next round will be a different kettle of fish against Spain, Cristo and Toni are well capable of giving us a close game.

JAPAN stole the show on the opening night of the 2018 Betway World Cup of Darts as they dumped out eighth seeds Austria in a 5-4 thriller in Frankfurt.

The 32-nation tournament opened at the Eissporthalle with the opening eight first round games on Thursday night, as Seigo Asada and Haruki Muramatsu produced an impressive 92.74 average to see off world number six Mensur Suljovic and his partner Zoran Lerchbacher.

Asada, making his World Cup debut, fired in four 180s as Japan raced into a 3-1 lead thanks to two 14-dart legs and a 13-dart leg.

Japan went within a leg of victory at 4-2 before Suljovic led the Austria fightback to take the nail-biting match to a last-leg decider.

Austria produced a maximum with their first visit in the final leg before Asada replied with a 180 of his own, and then found double 10 to seal a famous win for Japan and set up a clash with Canada in round two.

Scotland produced a strong display in their 5-1 triumph over the United States of America 5-1 to banish the memories of their defeat to Singapore at the same stage last year.

Gary Anderson, making his seventh World Cup appearance, and Peter Wright produced a clinical display to deny the American pairing of Larry Butler and Darin Young and will now meet Brazil in the last 16.

Despite hitting the highest average of the night (94.66), Anderson believes there is much more to come from the Scottish pair.

“Even though we hit a decent average we never played well, but that shows we must be a strong team,” said Anderson.

Last year’s finalists Wales overcame a tough test from Thailand as they recorded a battling 5-3 win to set up a clash with Switzerland in the second round.

Jonny Clayton, making his World Cup debut, and Premier League Darts star Gerwyn Price found themselves tied at 3-3 before showing their class by rattling off the final two legs, including an impressive 108 checkout

Elsewhere, Canada’s John Part and Dawson Murschell got their campaign off to a winning start with an emphatic 5-1 triumph over Italy.

Brazilian pair Diogo Portela and Bruno Rangel cruised past Denmark 5-1, Switzerland’s Alex Fehlmann and Andy Bless battled to a 5-2 win over China, while Spain’s Cristo Reyes and Toni Alcinas fought back to snatch a 5-4 victory over Russia.