Nico Kurz Darts

Five German players progressed to the second round of the German Darts Championship in Hildesheim on Friday for the first time in a European Tour event.

Max Hopp, Gabriel Clemens, Nico Kurz, Dragutin Horvat and Lukas Wenig were the five players to enjoy victory on home soil in front of fans at Halle 39 as the European Tour returned from a six-month break for the second event of the year.

Kurz, one of Germany’s brightest young talents who made his Alexandra Palace in December, defied a 100 average from Jason Lowe to run out a 6-4 winner in one of the opening day’s most exciting contests.

Former European Tour event winner Hopp comfortably saw off Reece Robinson 6-2, while Clemens enjoyed a 6-1 demolition of Steve West.

Host Nation Qualifiers Horvat and Wenig also impressed, as Horvat missed double 12 for a nine-dart leg in his 6-4 defeat of Ronny Huybrechts and Wenig fought off Cody Harris’ attempts to come back from 4-0 down as he won 6-4.

Debutant Franz Roetzsch came close to increasing German representation in Saturday’s second round to six, but Canadian number one Jeff Smith was a narrow 6-5 winner in a game which featured six ton-plus finishes.

A number of players remain in contention for places in the BoyleSports World Grand Prix, with the 32-player field for the TV event to be finalised at the conclusion of the German Darts Championship.

Last year’s World Grand Prix semi-finalist Chris Dobey went some way to ensuring a return to the double-start event with a 6-3 defeat of Scotland’s Ryan Murray.

2012 World Grand Prix runner-up Mervyn King joins Dobey in the provisional qualifying places following his 6-1 rout of Steffen Siepmann.

World number four Michael Smith proved too strong for fellow-St Helens man Alan Tabern, running out a 6-2 winner, while in-form South African Devon Petersen continued his impressive run with a 6-3 success over Jeffrey de Zwaan.

Scott Waites enjoyed a winning European Tour debut, defeating Darren Penhall 6-3 to set up a meeting against fellow-former Lakeside Champion Glen Durrant in the second round.

One of the day’s most entertaining matches saw Richard North edge out Ron Meulenkamp 6-5, having trailed the Dutchman 5-3.

Irish duo William O’Connor and Steve Lennon made it through to round two, while there were also victories for Danny Noppert and Adam Hunt.

In a change to the initial schedule, Kurz’s round two meeting with James Wade will take place at the end of the evening session instead of the afternoon due to Wade having encountered travel issues on Friday meaning that he will only arrive in Germany on the day of the tie.

The seeded players, including the world’s top three Michael van Gerwen, Peter Wright and Gerwyn Price, will enter at the second round stage on Saturday as the race for the £25,000 winners’ prize continues.

Day Two will be broadcast through PDCTV as well as through a series of bookmakers’ websites worldwide.

2020 German Darts Championship

Schedule of Play

Friday September 25

First Round

Afternoon Session

Scott Waites 6-3 Darren Penhall

William O’Connor 6-1 Daniel Larsson

Richard North 6-5 Ron Meulenkamp

Steve Lennon 6-2 Boris Koltsov

Jeff Smith 6-5 Franz Roetzsch

Lukas Wenig 6-4 Cody Harris

Dragutin Horvat 6-4 Ronny Huybrechts

Mervyn King 6-1 Steffen Siepmann

Evening Session

Danny Noppert 6-2 Josh Payne

Adam Hunt 6-3 Steve Brown

Gabriel Clemens 6-1 Steve West

Nico Kurz 6-4 Jason Lowe

Max Hopp 6-2 Reece Robinson

Devon Petersen 6-3 Jeffrey de Zwaan

Chris Dobey 6-3 Ryan Murray

Michael Smith 6-2 Alan Tabern

Saturday September 26

Second Round

Afternoon Session (1300 local time, 1200 BST)

Dave Chisnall v Lukas Wenig

Jermaine Wattimena v Mervyn King

Adrian Lewis v Danny Noppert

Daryl Gurney v Gabriel Clemens

Nathan Aspinall v Dragutin Horvat

Glen Durrant v Scott Waites

Rob Cross v William O’Connor

Evening Session (1900 local time, 1800 BST)

Jonny Clayton v Chris Dobey

Ian White v Max Hopp

Mensur Suljovic v Jeff Smith

Michael van Gerwen v Steve Lennon

Peter Wright v Michael Smith

Krzysztof Ratajski v Richard North

Gerwyn Price v Devon Petersen

Joe Cullen v Adam Hunt

James Wade v Nico Kurz

Sunday September 27

Afternoon Session (1300 local time, 1200 BST)

Third Round

Evening Session (1900 local time, 1800 BST)

Quarter-Finals

Semi-Finals

Final

Format

All games up to, and including, the quarter-finals, are the best of 11 legs. The semi-finals are the best of 13 legs and the final is the best of 15 legs.

Sunday’s games played in Draw Bracket order.

ENDS

Image: PDC Europe