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World of Sport

18th Dec 2018

Derry’s Daryl Gurney blasts his way to third round of World Championship

Ross Smith didn't play badly but Superchin wasn't messing around

Darragh Murphy

Daryl Gurney wasted no time in storming his way into the next round of the World Championship.

The darting pride of Derry found 180 at will and coasted through the second round with a 3-0 victory over Ross Smith to set up a clash with Jamie Lewis.

Gurney remains several pundits’ pick as a dark horse for the festive tournament and his confidence was on full display throughout the closing match in Tuesday’s evening session.

It wasn’t just Gurney’s walkout song of choice, Sweet Caroline, that got Alexandra Palace on his side early but it was the fact that he started a couple of legs with maximums, offering a few glimmers of hope of an elusive nine-darter after a long evening of play.

The rare honour wasn’t to be and Gurney did allow his opponent back into the opening set but the Derryman’s quality told as he edged a 3-2 set to settle any nerves.

Gurney’s finishing wasn’t always up to scratch as he repeatedly missed chances at a double but that flaw wasn’t punished as he broke away to a two-set lead thanks to his fourth consecutive leg.

Any chances of a comeback were squashed as Gurney stormed through the third set, averaging 110 after the final break and celebrating as though his victory was nothing but a formality.