At his World Cup debut, darts professional Ricardo Pietreczko will face one of the two qualified women in the first game. The 29-year-old from Nuremberg - nicknamed Pikachu - will play in London against the Japanese Mikuru Suzuki, as the draw revealed.
Pietreczko is in strong form and is considered one of the secret favorites at the tournament at Alexandra Palace. In a possible second round, Englishman Callan Rydz would wait. Already in round three it would probably be against top favorite Luke Humphries (also England).
The second woman in the field for the tournament (December 15 to January 3) is England's Fallon Sherrock, who became the first player to defeat two men at the World Cup in 2020. She is a possible second-round opponent for the German Martin Schindler, who previously has a bye. To do this, Sherrock has to prevail against the Dutchman Jermaine Wattimena.
Clemens threatens a second-round duel with Gian van Veen
At the start, Florian Hempel will face the Irish Dylan Slevin, Dragutin Horvat will face Mike de Decker from Belgium. World Cup semi-finalist Gabriel Clemens probably got the worst draw for the German quintet. Like Schindler, the 40-year-old from Saarland initially has a bye, but will probably have to compete against whiz kid Gian van Veen from the Netherlands in round two.
The opening game on December 15th will be played by Kevin Doets from the Netherlands and Stowe Buntz from the USA. The winner will face England's world champion Michael Smith late in the evening.