The first round of the 2022 Australian Darts Open Round Robin began today, with some of the best world players battling against some of Australia’s best.
Game number one began with WDF Australian Open #2 Peter Machin against Tasmanian Qualifying winner Leon Towns. Leon surprisingly took the first leg, but Peter turned it around with five straight leg wins to get his tournament off to a good start.
In the ladies’ first game, New Zealand #1, Wendy Harper, came out of the blocks with precise shots and upset WDF #3 Kristy Hutchingson 4-0 in a surprising victory.
In another surprise, New Zealand #2 Nicole Regnaud defeated the 2019 Australian Darts Open Ladies winner Lisa Ashton in a memorable victory. Nicole had an impressive 86.91 average and looked poised to be the lady to beat in this year’s tournament.
Meanwhile, WDF World Singles champions Neil Duff and Beau Greaves eased past their opposition. Duff defeated ACT Qualifier winner Darren Carson 5-0, and Greaves beat WDF Australian Open #2, Amanda Loch, 4-0.
Two games went down to the wire.
Mel Cuming and Jamie Rundle had a nail-biting finish. Cuming and Rundle went back and forth at the start until Rundle made some clinical shots to go 4-2 up. Mel pegged the game back to make it 4-4. Despite a very impressive 97.6 Average from Rundle in the final leg, Cuming was able to pull away with the victory.
Dutch #1 Jelle Klaason and Western Australian Qualifier David Platt also provided great entertainment. Platt came out the blocks with a few very special 180s to go 4-1 up. The game looked done and dusted until Klaason came into form and shook Platt by going 4-4. It all came down to the last leg, and miraculously, Klaason completed the comeback, winning 5-4.
The last game of the night was a family affair as Dad, Raymond Smith, was remarkably drawn up against his son, Ky Smith. Raymond had a strong start, winning the first three sets before Ky landed several 180s to get close. Raymond had his experience on his side as he closed the game out 5-2, ending a proud game for the father and an exciting night of darts.
In the other results, Japanese international Mikuru Suzuki beat WDF Australian #1 Tori Kewish 4-0 in a comprehensive victory.
In the men’s games, New Zealand #1 Haupai Puha defeated SA Qualifier Aaron Morrison 5-0.
WDF Australian #3 Jeremy Fagg beat VIC Qualifier Brandon Weening 5-0
And finally, in a close game, Donovan Lottering pipped WDF Australian #5 Sam Ballinger 5-3.
You can watch all the action by watching the Kayo Freebie link here.
You can also look at ALL the scores, both live and anything throughout the week, on the Dart Connect TV.
Tomorrow is a double header of matches, with the first afternoon games beginning at 12:00 pm with the evening games starting at 6:00 pm.