Phil Taylor secures second round spot in Gibraltar
Last Updated: June 28, 2013 10:50pm
Phil Taylor is safely through the first round of the Gibraltar Darts Trophy after a 6-2 win over Gino Vos.
World Champion Taylor kicked off the first PDC event in Gibraltar for three years with a sublime display as he averaged 115.31 and hit four 11-dart legs against Vos.
The young Dutchman actually won the game's opening leg, but could not answer a five-leg barrage from Taylor, who also missed four match darts in the game's seventh leg.
Vos took out 89 in two darts to keep his hopes alive, but Taylor hit a fourth 180 of the game as he completed a quartet of 11-dart finishes to seal victory.
"I'm very happy with that," said Taylor. "The crowd created a great atmosphere and we both fed off that, and it's a good start for me. I can probably improve a bit with my doubles but it was a good win."
Taylor next faces Dean Winstanley in Saturday's second round, with the Yorkshireman coming from 4-1 and 5-4 down to defeat Mark Walsh in a deciding leg in their opener.
Michael van Gerwen, the winner of the two most recent European Tour events, began his bid for a hat-trick with a 6-2 win over John Bowles, who had shared the game's opening four legs before being blown away as the Dutchman hit legs of 11 and 12 darts to pull clear.
Van Gerwen takes on Scott Rand in the second round, with the Coventry ace overcoming Jim Walker 6-4 earlier on Friday.
Simon Whitlock, the tournament's number two seed, was the biggest casualty on the opening day as he lost 6-3 to Connie Finnan, despite the Australian hitting a 156 checkout during the contest.
World number three Adrian Lewis narrowly avoided an upset against Northern Ireland's Michael Mansell, who took the Stoke thrower all the way to a deciding leg.
Austria's Mensur Suljovic knocked out number five seed Wes Newton in another 11-leg thriller, while Paul Nicholson earlier hit a 13-dart finish to win the deciding leg of his first round clash with Joe Cullen, who had led 4-1 at one stage.
Home hopes in the tournament, though, were ended on Friday as all four Gibraltan qualifiers were defeated.