Nine-dart Alan Norris wins PDC Tour card along with Mike Zuydwijk and Jeffrey de Zwaan
Last Updated: 14/01/15 9:04pm
Nine-dart star Alan Norris, Nigel Heydon and Dutch youngsters Mike Zuydwijk and Jeffrey de Zwaan were the Tour card winners on Day One of the 2015 PDC Qualifying School in Wigan.
Former Lakeside runner-up Norris announced his arrival on the PDC circuit with the first perfect leg of 2015 as he won through from 376 competitors on the opening day of Qualifying School.
The 42-year-old showed his quality with four 5-0 victories from seven games on the day, whitewashing Philip Johnson-Hale, Gino Vos, Jason Lovett and Andrew Johnson, with his victory over Lovett being capped by a nine-darter.
Norris also defeated Ireland's William O'Connor and Holland's Erik Hol as he won through to the decider, where he came from 3-0 down against Skegness newcomer Carl Abbiss to win five straight legs and seal his Tour card.
He said: "I'm absolutely delighted - I've had a nine-darter in my first day on the PDC circuit, what more can you ask for?"
Norris was one of four players who competed in the recent Lakeside World Championship before joining the PDC circuit at Qualifying School, and he added: "I've probably surprised a lot of players who play on the PDC circuit."
Heydon holds on
Leamington Spa's Nigel Heydon retained his status on the professional circuit as he defeated Scottish veteran Jim Walker 5-3 in their decider.
Heydon also defeated Ian McFarlane, Philip Borthwick, Andy Pearce, Oliver Stell, Matthew Dennant and Stephen Carrett on the day, as the 44-year-old avoided dropping from the ProTour to the Challenge Tour.
Zuydwijk and de Zwaan, meanwhile, will progress onto the PDC ProTour after qualifying on Wednesday, with both players part of a team being put together by Raymond van Barneveld and his manager to sponsor and develop young Dutch stars.
Robbie Green and James Wilson, who joined Norris in moving from the BDO circuit to the PDC, reached the last 16 on Wednesday, alongside Japanese No 1 Haruki Muramatsu, who is looking to secure his place as a full-time PDC professional.
Former UK Open finalist Barrie Bates, experienced professional Andy Jenkins, South Africa's Graham Filby and Dutch quartet Jan Dekker, Dirk van Duijvenbode, Mareno Michels and Jermaine Wattimena were all amongst the last 32.
The four-day PDC Qualifying School continues on Thursday, with a further four automatic PDC Tour cards on offer to the last four players, as well as further ranking points.
In addition to the 16 automatic Tour cards, a further 18 Tour cards will be awarded to players from the Q School Order of Merit, based on ranking points won across the four days.