Tori Kewish produced a career-best performance to whitewash top seed Deta Hedman as Thibault Tricole, Steve Hine and Andy Baetens booked their spots in the Men’s Last 16.
Coming off a win over close friend Lorraine Hyde 2-0 in the first round, Kewish raced out of the blocks against Hedman, winning the first two legs in 15 darts with finishes of 120 and 80. The third was much scrappier, with both players missing a slew of doubles, but Kewish got over the line on double one.
Hedman, a three-time finalist here previously, pushed her harder in the second but Kewish’s scoring was relentless, winning the first two legs in 35 darts before sealing it with a 15-darter that included two maximums.
Kewish, the only Australian left in the competition, will be back in action on Friday when she meets either Lorraine Winstanley or Vicky Pruim in the quarter-finals.
Second seed Thibault Tricole survived an almighty scare from Canada’s Shawn Burt in the opening game of the session, surviving six match darts before prevailing victorious 3-2.
Burt had produced the shock of the tournament on Sunday when he dumped out PDC Tour Card holder Connor Scutt 2-0 but made a slow start against the Frenchman, dropping the first 3-2.
Tricole’s finishing was a weak point through the first half of the game and it cost him particularly in the second set, in which he squandered six set darts and allowed Burt to take it 3-2.
Burt followed that up with a brilliant third set, winning it 3-0 with a 98.02 average. 2-1 down in sets and just three legs away from an early elimination, Tricole responded in kind by taking the fourth set 3-0 and going 2-1 up in the decider.
A 20-dart hold of throw for Burt forced Tricole to throw for the match in a sudden death leg, in which Burt raced down to a finish before missing those match darts. With his back against the wall, Tricole took out 74 to complete an emotional victory.
Next up for ‘The French Touch’ will be England’s Steve Hine, who impressively beat the much-fancied Leonard Gates 3-0.
A break of throw in the fourth leg saw Hine take the opening set 3-1 and he continued the second set in a similarly impressive vein, a 116 out and a 12-darter giving him a 2-0 lead. Gates broke back and drew level at 2-2 before missing a set dart, opening the door for Hine to win that leg in 14 darts and the set 3-2.
The third set also went all the way, Hine recovering from busting 130 for the match in the fourth leg by taking out 24 for victory in the decider.
In the final game of the session, Belgium’s Andy Baetens fired in five maximums against Dave Parletti as he made a winning return to the Lakeside stage after a five-year absence.
Baetens, now nicknamed ‘The Beast from the East’, looked like he was going to race away with it when he won the opening two sets without dropping a leg.
Much like in his game with Shaun McDonald, Parletti wouldn’t give up without a fight. He took out a sensational 156 checkout en route to winning the third set 3-1 and the Surrey man won the opening leg of the fourth.
He just couldn’t keep up with Baetens’ relentless scoring though, the Belgian going six darts into a potential nine-darter in the second leg and producing finishes of 82, 51, and 54 to wrap up a 3-1 victory. Baetens, who finished with a 92.35 average, will meet the winner of Scott Marsh’s game with James Richardson in the last 16.
Thibault Tricole 3-2 Shawn Burt
Tori Kewish 2-0 Deta Hedman
Steve Hine 3-0 Leonard Gates
Andy Baetens 3-1 Dave Parletti
Photo Credit: Chris Sargeant/Tip Top Pics