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Masters: Chris Dobey advances while Dave Chisnall steals the show with monster average

Chris Dobey began his defence of the Cazoo Masters with a comeback victory over Andrew Gilding on Friday, as Dave Chisnall produced the performance of the opening night in Milton Keynes.

Friday’s first round saw eight opening round ties take place at the Marshall Arena, as reigning champion Dobey defied a sluggish start to topple UK Open champion Gilding.

Gilding threatened to cause an upset after moving into a 3-2 lead, although Dobey responded with back-to-back 14-darters, reeling off the last four legs without reply to progress.

“It’s great to be back, and it’s always nice to get off to a winning start,” admitted Dobey, who will now face five-time Masters winner Michael van Gerwen in a blockbuster second round showdown.

“Andrew has his own style and you can’t knock him for that, but I struggled to find my own rhythm early on.

“Now I’m in the top 16 I want to push on. I want to push towards the top ten and top eight and win another couple of titles, and it would be great to start here this weekend.”

However, two-time runner-up Chisnall stole the headlines with a magical performance, crashing in a 109.26 average to complete a 6-1 demolition of Martin Schindler, who averaged 103 in defeat.

Chisnall opened the contest with five perfect darts, and that set the tone for an imperious display, with the St Helens star kicking off each of the last two legs with back-to-back 180s.

“I don’t think the scoreline reflected the game,” reflected Chisnall, who will play world number seven Danny Noppert in Saturday afternoon’s opener.

“Martin missed a few chances and let me in, and my doubles were really good tonight.

“Since the World Championship, I’ve been practising for three hours every day, and it’s starting to pay off now, so I’m happy.”

Photo Credit: PDC

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