Darts: Jones fights back to knock out 'Rocky'

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The Independent Online

Wayne Jones recovered from two sets down for the second consecutive match to send the eighth seed Andy Jenkins tumbling out of the Professional Darts Corporation World Championship at Purfleet's Circus Tavern last night.

The 40-year-old Wolverhampton qualifier had been near to defeat in the first round against James Wade, but had more time to fight back in this best-of-seven encounter - winning 4-3 to secure his place in the last 16.

After Jenkins had gone 2-0 up, Jones got into gear and reeled off three successive sets before his opponent produced a superb 91 checkout on the bullseye to force a decider.

A brilliant 141 finish by Jones made it 2-0 in legs after Jenkins had passed up an out-shot, wrongly gambling that the world No 36 would miss his attempt, and then a 61 on double eight knocked out the man nicknamed "Rocky".

The opening match of round two was even more dramatic as John Kuczynski, the American No 1, scraped through in a sudden-death leg against Jan van der Rassel, of the Netherlands, after both men squandered chance after chance to close it out.

Kuczynski, who won the opening leg of the match with a 164 checkout, was never behind in sets, but it looked as if Van der Rassel had timed his run perfectly when he edged ahead in the decider, which must be won by two clear legs unless the score reaches 5-5. But Kuczynski broke back and when it reached sudden death, he hit the bullseye to secure first throw. Van der Rassel then missed eight chances before Kuczynski converted his 15th match dart. "That was unbelievable - what more could you ask for in the first match of the second round?" Kuczynski said.

In the third round, Kuczynski will meet Gary Welding, who followed up his victory over top seed Colin Lloyd by defeating Dutch youngster Erwin Extercatte 4-1.