/ Darts

Beaton digs deep to win controversial clash

Updated: Sunday, 18 Dec 2011 00:14

Frustrated - the partisan crowd appeared to get to Magnus Caris, who threw away a winning opportunity against Steve Beaton
Frustrated - the partisan crowd appeared to get to Magnus Caris, who threw away a winning opportunity against Steve Beaton

Steve Beaton was forced to dig deep to keep his World Championship campaign going in a controversial clash with Magnus Caris tonight.

Beaton looked set to exit the tournament when he trailed two sets to nil, having missed a host of doubles - but made a remarkable comeback with the backing of a boisterous Alexandra Palace crowd.

Caris was booed by spectators while throwing for a 3-0 win and, after he responded angrily, his game seemed to suffer as a result.

Beaton, seeded 28th, took advantage to win three successive sets while far from his best form and secure a 3-2 win.

Paul Nicholson, himself no stranger to bad blood with spectators, also endured a battle to overcome Mensur Suljovic in four sets.

The Australian led 2-1 but was broken in the third leg of the fourth set, missing four darts for the leg. He immediately levelled against the throw but a third successive break should have followed as his Austrian opponent missed three darts at double 10 and a relieved Nicholson closed out a 3-1 success.

Vincent van der Voort was another player to be taken the distance against Mark Hylton, the Dutchman prevailing 3-2 after throwing 11 180s in a high-quality clash.

Jelle Klaasen won the first six legs of the match on his way to a 3-1 win over Peter Wright.

The Dutchman has been struggling for form in recent months and said: "Peter was off-target with his doubles in the first two sets and that allowed me to gain confidence. I still feel that I will have to play a lot better in my next match but I am delighted with today's win."

Robert Thornton advanced with a 3-1 win over Ian White and the Scotsman, back to full health after a bout of pneumonia, will next face another Stoke opponent in Adrian Lewis.

Left-hander Alan Tabern battled to a 3-1 win over Christian Perez, the Philippines player who had beaten Austria's Dietmar Burger in the preliminary round earlier in the day, while Steve Farmer completed a five-set win over Ronnie Baxter.

Germany's Kevin Munch was handed a place in round two after opponent Denis Ovens was forced to pull out with a pre-existing back problem after losing the first set.

Munch had earlier made short work of Lee Choon Peng in the preliminary round, though he needed six darts to finish the game.

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