John Henderson was thrilled to reach the third round of the PDC World Championships – but believes he can still play better.
The Highlander eased past England’s James Richardson 3-0 in the second round at London’s Alexandra Palace.
During the match the man from Huntly hit four 180s and averaged 93.34 with a checkout success rate of 39.13% (nine out of 23).
The 46-year-old said: “It maybe looks a straightforward victory, but I don’t think it was.
“James came through a hard game where the pressure was on him against Mikura Suzukib but in this game I felt the pressure was off him and it was on me to beat him.
“I did play well at times and James didn’t play as well as he can. The first game at Ally Pally is always the hardest one so I’m just delighted with that to get through.
“The performance could have been better, but I’m just happy with the result.”
Henderson hasn’t had the best year in the televised tournaments in 2019, suffering first- round exits in the World Matchplay and World Grand Prix. But he hopes the world championships can be different and added: “This year hasn’t been great for me in the TV events, but my form in the floor tournaments has been OK.
“Hopefully I can put that right in the world championships. That’s the hardest game over I think and everyone is in with a chance.”
Henderson, the 30th seed, dominated yesterday’s match against a player 31 places below him in the rankings.
Richardson did show his quality in the third leg. The Englishman broke throw finishing off 40 by mistakenly hitting double six – when aiming at double 10 – and then pinning double four.
Henderson responded well, nailing double top and then double 18 to win the first set – in which he averaged 101.66, throwing three maximums.
After Richardson held throw by taking out a cool 106 checkout, Henderson ran away with the second set.
He hit double 18, tops and double 10 to win three straight legs.
In the final set Henderson whitewashed Richardson, who looked a beaten man by that point.
Henderson hit double two to eventually win the first leg of the set and then checked out 82 with tops before hitting double 20 again to seal victory.
l In yesterday’s other matches Justin Pipe fended off Benjamin Pratnemer 3-2 while Jan Dekker defeated Ryan Joyce by the same scoreline.
The 1996 BDO world champion Steve Beaton continued his latest Palace tilt by beating Kyle Anderson 3-1 and Chris Dobey saved match darts against Ron Meulenkamp to emerge victorious 4-2 in the deciding set.
Meanwhile, 2017 BDO worlds runner-up Danny Noppert progressed to the next round as he won 3-2 over Callan Rydz.