Peter Wright and Daryl Gurney were among the four players to make it through to the second round of the 2019 Betfred World Matchplay in Blackpool on Monday.
Night three of the summer’s biggest darts event saw the final four first round matches take place, with 2017 runner-up Wright safely navigating his way into the last-16 thanks to a 10-5 victory over Vincent van der Voort.
World Cup winner Wright came into the tournament in sensational form, and after going 2-0 down, the Scot produced a roof-raising 164 checkout to get his first leg on the board.
From there Wright warmed to his task and soon found himself 4-2 ahead, but a dogged van der Voort stuck with the world number five to trail 6-5.
That was as good as it got for the Dutch stalwart as Wright put his foot to the floor to reel off the final four legs, ending the tie with a 102 average, to set up a meeting with Simon Whitlock.
Earlier in the night, two-time Matchplay semi-finalist Whitlock defied a six-point deficit in the averages to battle his way to a 10-8 success over John Henderson.
A 112 checkout from Whitlock put him into a 5-3 lead, only for Henderson to burst into life and rattle off the next three legs to go in front for the first time at 6-5.
The pendulum then swung back in Whitlock’s favour as he won four successive legs, the last of which was won with a 124 checkout, to go within a leg of the match.
Henderson rallied with finishes of 97 and 81, but after the Scottish crowd favourite missed four darts to take the match to a tie-break, Whitlock found double eight with his last dart in hand to seal his path through to round two.
Former semi-finalist Gurney landed nine 180s on his way to a 10-7 victory over debutant Ricky Evans.
Missed doubles from world number four Gurney allowed Evans to keep in touch at 4-3, before Gurney found his range on the outer ring to stretch his advantage to 7-3.
Evans then began to settle, winning four of the next five legs to go within a leg of the Nothern Irishman at 8-7.
With Evans waiting on 24 to level and take the game to a grandstand finale, Gurney showed composure to find double six with his last dart in hand, before sealing the win in the following leg with another last dart in hand checkout, this time on double two.
Gurney will now face Keegan Brown, who landed four ton-plus checkouts to edge out 14th seed Jonny Clayton 10-8.
There was never more than a leg between the pair in the opening 11 legs, before leg 12 saw Clayton fire in a 14-dart leg to break throw.
However, the Welshman failed to press home the advantage and Brown punished with a third successful visit to double 16 followed by a magnificent 127 finish on the bullseye, adding to his earlier checkouts of 148 and 134.
At 8-8, Brown struck a pivotal 109 checkout to break throw and go 9-8 in front, before the former world youth champion found double top to book his place in the last-1616 for the second time in Blackpool.
The last-16 begins on Tuesday, as two-time Matchplay champion Michael van Gerwen faces Glen Durrant, while reigning champion Gary Anderson continues his quest for back-to-back titles against Mervyn King.