Gabriel Clemens started perfectly: 180 points in the first shot and the break followed at the end of the opening leg. Stephen Bunting had already reported on a very good joint training session with the German after his win against Callan Rydz (6:0) and hoped for a continuation in preparation for the second round on Saturday.
Clemens seemed to be doing the Englishman and himself a favor, leading 3:1 against Ryan Meikle early on, but conceding the break to make it 3:3 and then missing three darts in a row for a rebreak. Problems on the doubles, which subsequently only became rarer because the “German Giant” also dropped in scoring and ultimately lost the match with an average of 91.36 points, which was still decent. Meikle won 6:4.
A bitter defeat for Clemens, as the Saarwellinger is still fighting for qualification for the European Championships, which begin on October 27th in Dortmund. The best 32 players of the European Tour buy the ticket. The German number one is currently in 31st place, but could be overtaken by six players this weekend. Among them is Meikle, who now meets Poland’s Krzysztof Ratajski on Saturday.
For the second German, the tournament in Budapest ended on Friday afternoon. Franz Rötzsch, who had just been promoted to the Bundesliga with Karlsruher SC, was able to claim qualification as a success and had to deal with Madars Razma.
But for a long time he not only kept up against the top 40 players from Latvia, but was on the verge of causing a sensation on his third appearance on a TV stage. The man from Bad Wörrishofen made the early break and took a 3-1 lead with an average of 100.45, then even broke Razma again to make it 5-2.
But the favorite once again proved his fighting qualities, shortened to 3: 5 and 4: 5. When Rötzsch was ready to win in his last throw-off leg with 40 points left, Razma checked 108 points to make it 5:5 and then followed up with the fourth leg in a row. A catch-up in 15, 15, 15 and 16 darts. “That was hard. He was very good, he’s just a very good player. And I told him that after the match. He just has to keep going.”
Raymond van Barneveld went into the second round without a fight. Opponent Rowby-John Rodriguez had to withdraw at short notice to go to the hospital after his daughter suffered complications from an operation.
“We had hoped that my daughter’s surgery would go smoothly on Thursday and that I could compete in Budapest,” Rodriguez said. His three-year-old daughter suffers from heart problems: “I would have liked to play in Budapest, but my family comes first.” According to the Austrian, the daughter is now doing better.
Madaras Razma (LAT) – Franz Rötzsch (GER) 6-5
Jim Williams (WAL) – Brett Claydon (ENG) 6:5
Boris Krcmar (CRO) – Levente Sarai (HUN) 6: 1
Jeff Smith (CAN) – Rusty-Jake Rodriguez (AUT) 2:6
Darius Labanauskas (LIT) – Josh Rock (NIR) 4:6
Karel Sedlacek (CZE) – Thibaut Tricole (FRA) 6: 4
Jeffrey de Zwaan (NED) – Andras Borbely (HUN) 6:2
Daryl Gurney (NIR) – Nathan Rafferty (NIR) 6:1
Ian White (ENG) – Martin Lukeman (ENG) 4:6
Dave Chisnall (ENG) – Daniel Larsson (SWE) 6:1
William O‘Connor (IRL) – Pal Szekely (HUN) 6:2
Chris Dobey (ENG) – Ted Evetts (ENG) 6:3
Simon Whitlock (AUS) – Janos Vegsö (HUN) 6:2
Raymond van Barneveld (NED) – Rowby-John Rodriguez (AUT) no fight
Stephen Bunting (ENG) – Callan Rydz (ENG) 6:0
Gabriel Clemens (GER) – Ryan Meikle (ENG) 4:6
2nd round (Saturday, from 1 p.m.):
Damon Heta (AUS) – Josh Rock (NIR)
Danny Noppert (NED) – Rusty-Jake Rodriguez (AUT)
Ryan Searle (ENG) – Karel Sedlacek (CZE)
Dirk van Duijvenbode (NED) – Chris Dobey (ENG)
Michael Smith (ENG) – Daryl Gurney (NIR)
Krzysztof Ratajski (POL) – Gabriel Clemens (GER)
Dimitri Van Den Bergh (BEL) – William O‘Connor (IRL)
Jonny Clayton (WAL) – Dave Chisnall (ENG)
Rob Cross (ENG) – Jeffrey de Zwaan (NED)
Jose de Sousa (POR) – Raymond van Barneveld (NED)
Luke Humphries (ENG) – Boris Krcmar (CRO)
Joe Cullen (ENG) – Martin Lukeman (ENG)
Peter Wright (SCO) – Jim Williams (WAL)
Michael van Gerwen (NED) – Simon Whitlock (AUS)
Nathan Aspinall (ENG) – Stephen Bunting (ENG)
Already without a fight in the quarterfinals: Madaras Razma (LAT)