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Jonny Clayton admits he was lucky to avoid early World Grand Prix exit

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Reigning champion Jonny Clayton has admitted he was lucky to avoid an early exit after surviving a scare on the opening night of the World Grand Prix in Leicester.

The Welshman advanced to the second round coming out of a set to defeat 2020 finalist Dirk Van Duijvenbode 2-1 at Morningside Arena.

Clayton’s three-dart average of 82.24 was slightly lower than his Dutch opponent (83.69).

“Listen, Dirk should have won that, end,” the world number seven told Sky Sports. “I had my chances. I just scratched.

“I’m happy to have succeeded, obviously, but I managed this big blow. I struggled tonight. I do not know why. I felt good and I just couldn’t go.

Belgium’s Dimitri Van den Bergh awaits Clayton in the last 16 after knocking out two-time runner-up Dave Chisnall 2-1.

Five-time winner Michael Van Gerwen shot three 180s as he put aside a nervous start to overtake Gary Anderson 2-0, while world number two Peter Wright overcame Belgian Kim Huybrechts by the same scoreline.

Adrian Lewis produced superb crates of 152, 101 and 147 as he beat world number six Jose De Sousa 2-0 in Monday night’s final clash.

Two-time world champion Lewis will next face Chris Dobey, who previously hit a brilliant 136 and 138 checkouts en route to beating Luke Humphries 2-0.

Krzysztof Ratajski and Stephen Bunting also advanced with 2-0 wins, beating Callan Rydz and Brendan Dolan respectively.

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By Peter Kavinsky

Peter Kavinsky is the Executive Editor at cablefreetv.org