Sydney Darts Masters: Raymond van Barneveld beaten by Clinton Bridge
Raymond van Barneveld was the big-name casualty at the Sydney Darts Masters following a shock defeat by Clinton Bridge.
Last Updated: 08/09/13 11:25pm
Australian Grand Prix number three Bridge, a bricklayer from Geelong, made a sparkling big-stage debut by coming from 5-3 down to beat five-time world champion Barney 6-5 in an almighty upset in the new tournament.
"It's a dream come true," said Bridge. "Raymond's such a great player so to get a result like this is amazing for me.
"You don't expect to play these type of players in Australia, let alone have a dart to beat them. In the last leg I just wanted to get a shot at a double and take it, and I managed to do that.
"The 136 checkout earlier was huge for me too. When I hit that, and a 180 I hit, it threw him a bit and that's what you have to do against these players. I was shaking when I got to the winning double and I didn't expect it to go in, but I'm so glad it did!"
Bridge now plays another Dutchman in Michael van Gerwen in Friday's quarter-finals after the world number two swept past Gordon Mathers in just ten minutes and averaged 106.09.
Phil Taylor defeated Australian domestic number one Kyle Anderson 6-1, and will now go up against Paul Nicholson after the Australian World Cup star beat New Zealand's Warren Parry 6-4.
"All the players were a bit nervous tonight because we all didn't quite know what to expect, so I'm really pleased to be through," said Taylor. "I got a lovely reception from the crowd and we both had some great support."
The biggest ovation of the night from the home crowd was reserved for world No 4 Simon Whitlock who rewarded them with a 6-0 whitewash of Brisbane qualifier Jamie Mathers.
"Everything about tonight was wonderful," said Whitlock. "The crowd was brilliant and darts in Australia is finally on TV, and this is a big step forward for us. We've got some great players here and Jamie will be better for this experience, and he played well - but I'm delighted with my performance.
"I've never felt like I did tonight because the crowd were amazing from start to finish. With the crowd behind me and form like that, there's no reason why I can't go all the way."
European Champion Adrian Lewis also impressed as he claimed a 6-1 win over New Zealand's Monty Tuhua, who was welcomed to the stage by a traditional Haka but was unable to halt the two-time world champion.
Lewis will now meet Wes Newton on Friday night, with the Fleetwood ace seeing off Perth's David Platt 6-3, while Andy Hamilton booked a clash with Whitlock by defeating Oceanic Masters champion Beau Anderson.