Former BDO world champion Ted Hankey ensured qualification from Group H with a surprise win against title holder Phil Taylor in the Daily Mirror Grand Slam of Darts at Wolverhampton Civic Hall on Monday night.
Hankey has now won both round robin matches and qualifies with a game to spare, his final group match is against Michael van Gerwen who has lost both his matches and is already knocked out of this year’s competition.
Hankey took an early lead 2-0 lead in the best of nine legs match and although Taylor fought back to take it to the final leg, Hankey was always in control and took the decider in 14 darts for a 5-4 win.
Be-spectacled Taylor claimed he is still trying to adjust to the glasses with which he was playing for only the second time.
The world number one said afterwards: “My darts were clipping the wires just on the wrong side and I know I didn’t play as well as I can.
“I’m struggling with the glasses and because it’s new for me I’m thinking about it all the time, but I’ve got to get used to them.”
Taylor plays Wes Newton on Wednesday in a straight shoot-out with the winner progressing to the next stage.
Scott Waites cruised to a 5-1 win against Martin Phillips to nail his qualification from Group E, leaving Phillips and Co Stompe to shoot it out for the other qualifying position in their next match.
Colin Lloyd’s 5-3 defeat over Raymond van Barneveld secured his place in the last 16 and Barney next plays Darryl Finton to decide the final qualifying slot from Group F.
Finton had to fight back from 3-1 down against Tricia Wright, his 5-3 win proving to be a knock out blow for the event’s only female competitor who was losing her second match.
GRAND PRIX OF DARTS, DAY THREE RESULTS
Adrian Lewis 3-5 Co Stompe
Scott Waites 5-1 Martin Phillips
Darryl Fitton 5-3 Tricia Wright
Raymond van Barneveld 3-5 Colin Lloyd
Steve Beaton 5-1 Arron Monk
Paul Nicholson 5-3 Ronnie Baxter
Wes Newton 5-4 Michael van Gerwen
Phil Taylor 4-5 Ted Hankey