Adrian Lewis produced a stunning whitewash of BetVictor World Matchplay debutant Andrew Gilding as he stormed into the second round in the darts tournament at Blackpool’s Winter Gardens.
World number three Lewis, last year’s beaten finalist at the Winter Gardens, averaged 110 in a ruthless demolition of the newcomer from Suffolk, who was limited to just two darts at a double during the 21-minute contest.
After winning the opening leg on double 19, Lewis hit a 180 as he doubled his lead and posted the first of two 11-dart finishes as he took control at 3-0.
He then punished a miss at tops from Gilding, to complete a 100 finish, in the fourth, hit back-to-back 14-dart legs to lead 6-0 and then took out 97 for a seven-leg cushion.
Lewis then fired in his second 11-darter, which was followed by a brilliant ten-dart finish which featured scores of 180, 134 and 171 before he hit double eight to win his ninth leg - despite Gilding landing his second maximum in reply.
He then secured the victory in style, opening the tenth leg with a 177 score before taking out 83 for a 14-darter to complete a brilliant display.
“I’ve never played Andrew before but he’s beaten some top names and I knew I had to be ready tonight, so I’m really pleased with that,” said Lewis, whose pre-tournament odds of 8/1 have been slashed to 13/2 following the win.
“I’ve been working really hard for the last few weeks and I know my form’s fantastic and I’m feeling very confident. That was probably me at about 80 percent and I think I can do better than this.
“It could have been a higher average - I was hitting 140s where I was getting the first two darts perfect in the treble 20 and missing with the third, so if I turn the 140s into 180s I could probably average 130!
“I’ve lost to Phil Taylor with a 111 average before and I averaged 107 against him and lost in the final last year, so I’m not taking anything for granted, but I believe I can win this tournament.”
Lewis now meets Mervyn King in the second round on Wednesday,