World Matchplay: Former champion Gary Anderson bows out as action in Blackpool heats up

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Gary Anderson's run in the World Matchplay in Blackpool ended in the first round, with the 51-year-old on the wrong side of a 10-7 match against Daryl Gurney. Anderson previously won the tournament in 2018 and finished as a runner up in 2020. However, he was the victim of a shock upset in the first round during Sunday's action. Gurney, twice a World Matchplay semi-finalist, averaged 92.25 and kept his cool in the key moments to send Anderson packing. A superb 134 checkout by 51-year-old Anderson reduced the deficit to 5-4 after a poor start but Gurney was able to win three legs in a row to take control.

Anderson took out 116 in the 15th leg to again pull within one of his rival at the Winter Gardens. But Gurney showed his confidence to throw a no-look 180 during the final leg before he closed out the win. Michael Smith, runner-up in 2019, survived a big scare before he edged out Andrew Gilding 11-9 in the first tie-breaker of this year's tournament.

Smith had been 8-4 down but fought back and also managed to register the highest checkout at the World Matchplay so far with 161. UK Open winner Danny Noppert also progressed into the second round with a 10-6 victory over Brendan Dolan. His Dutch compatriot Dirk van Duijvenbode won as well after he beat Ryan Searle 10-8 in a thrilling affair.

The article World Matchplay: Former champion Gary Anderson bows out as action in Blackpool heats up appeared first on Planetsport.com.

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