Wade survives huge scare
Sixth seed James Wade came back from the brink to beat Darren Webster 3-2 in the first round of the PDC World Darts Championship.
Webster missed six match darts when throwing for the win in the deciding leg of the fourth set and Wade then raced through the fifth set 3-1 to complete his escape act.
"I feel like the luckiest man in the world," said Wade, who averaged 91.92 and will play Andy Smith in round two.
"I can't believe I won that game, I usually lose those ones. Whenever anyone gets a chance to beat me they do their job and finish it; Darren didn't.
"If there was a remote part of my body that feels guilty then I would feel guilty: but I don't."
Wade had secured the opening set in a deciding leg but looked far from his best and had no answer when Webster upped his game.
The Norwich joiner produced a 14-dart leg in the second-set decider and then moved in front by coming from 2-0 down to win the third set.
Webster moved 2-1 up in the fourth set, needing just one more leg for the match, but Wade held for 2-2 with his sixth dart at a double.
That left Webster throwing for a place in the second round and he was first to a finish, only for the pressure then to prove too much. He missed six darts at a double before Wade finally hit double 10 to force a deciding set, which he dominated.
In the opening match on Thursday night, Mark Webster twice came from a set down to defeat Mensur Suljovic 3-2.
Both players had plenty of chances throughout an error-strewn affair that saw a total of 58 doubles missed.
Suljovic made a strong start, winning the opening set in four legs and then moving 2-1 up in the second.
But the Serbian-born Austrian missed four darts for a two-set advantage as Webster swooped in to level at one apiece.
Suljovic claimed the third set in a deciding leg before Webster whitewashed him in the fourth to ensure a decider was required.
And it was the Welsh left-hander who came through 4-2 in the decider, which must be won by two clear legs, helped by an 11-darter and a 150 checkout.
Webster, the 2008 BDO world champion who beat Phil Taylor on the way to the semi-finals of this tournament three years ago, will play Dave Chisnall's conqueror John Henderson in the second round.
Eighth seed Wes Newton booked a second-round meeting with former champion John Part thanks to a 3-1 victory against Hong Kong qualifier Royden Lam.
Lam had seen off Gino Vos 4-1 on legs earlier in the evening for the right to face Newton, who was not at his most fluent and had to work hard for the win.
Newton edged the opening set in a deciding leg and then raced through the second without dropping a leg.
But Lam responded with a 14-dart leg on the way to winning the third set, sealing it with an audacious bullseye to take out a 50 finish.
Newton polished off the result in the deciding leg of the fourth set.
Former finalist Kevin Painter completed the second-round line-up with an impressive 3-0 victory against Germany's Thomas Seyler.
Painter lost the first leg but then reeled off nine in a row, finishing with a 98.59 average.
The 13th seed will now face Paul Nicholson in the last 32.