• PDC World Championship

Barney edges Ally Pally thriller

ESPN staff
December 20, 2013
Van Barneveld survived a first-round scare © Getty Images

Raymond van Barneveld scraped into the second round of the PDC World Championship after a thrilling showdown with Jamie Caven at Alexandra Palace.

Van Barneveld had taken a 2-1 lead, only to lose the next two sets - both in deciding legs - to fall 3-2 behind to the 37-year-old, who missed double 12 for a nine-darter in the fourth set.

Taylor exit to spark next generation into life

Who will win now Taylor is out? © Getty Images
  • Phil Taylor's early exit from the PDC World Championship has blown the door wide open for the chasing field - but who will have the bottle to step up and lift the trophy at Ally Pally?
  • Read Rob Bartlett's predictions here

But van Barneveld rallied to win six of the next seven legs to come through in the deciding set, ending the match with a 99.65 average - the highest of the tournament so far.

"I'm so relieved to get through this tough battle against Jamie," van Barneveld, who will face Mark Webster or John Henderson for a place in the quarter-finals, said.

"I missed one dart to win the set first and Jamie shook me with a brilliant 136 checkout. From then it became a real battle.

"I thought I may have broken Jamie's spirit when I was 2-1 but he came back again and was flying with the ten-dart-finish, and missing double 12 for the nine-darter!

"It's great to be through and I have a good Christmas and then concentrate on my next game."

In the opening match of the session, Peter Wright came from 2-1 down to defeat Denmark's Per Laursen and become the first player into the last 16.

Wright lost a tight third set, but won nine of the next 11 legs to win the game - averaging more than 98.

"I'm a much better player than I was a few years ago when I reached the third round," the world No. 16 said. "I always feel capable of challenging the best and that's what I'm here to do."

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