Hankey v Atkins: Count to take out the Assassin
With so many Lakeside newcomers making a big impression this year, it is almost comforting to see a quarter-final with two well-known faces in this contest between Ted Hankey and Martin Atkins.
Despite these two being World Championship veterans, and of course Hankey winning the competition twice, not many thought they would make the last eight due to their tough draws.
Atkins faced a tough task first up against his pairs partner John Walton and then another tricky tie against Dutchman Willy van de Wiel, but he passed both tests with flying colours and has reached the quarter-final for the first time since his Lakeside debut in 2005.
The Assassin hadn’t been showing any form at all before the tournament but he seems to have peaked at the right time and will have every confidence in his ability to upset the odds again against the Count.
Ted will be equally sure that he will be the one to make the semi-finals though and he has shown all the qualities that saw him lift the trophy in 2000 and 2009, especially in his spectacular win over Scott Waites.
Hankey has demonstrated his talent and battling ability in equal measures and has had to as both his matches have gone the full distance; he and Alan Norris are the only two men to have played the maximum 12 sets so far.
Although there hasn’t been much between the performances of the two so far, Hankey is strong favourite due to his far superior experience on the biggest stage in the BDO.
Atkins will certainly take hope from the only time these two have met in a major though when he triumphed over the Stoke legend in the quarter-finals of the Masters back in 2007.
I think the big win Hankey picked up over Waites on Wednesday night will have really focussed his mind on making another final, and I fully expect him to prosper over Atkins and make the last four. He’ll be more ruthless than in his first two clashes and I fancy backing him with 1.t set deficit.
• O'Shea v Kist: A worthy final to savour
• Hankey v Kist: Terrible Ted too tough for Kist
• O'Shea v Harms: The year of the Silverback
• Kist v Norris: Dutch delight for Vroomshoop flinger
• Harms v Jennings: Sparky has lit up Lakeside
• O'Shea v Adams: Wolf to tame Silverback
• Waites v Hankey: You can Count on Ted
• Kist v De Vos: Dutchman to Kist the lipstick
• Winstanley v Norris: Chuck your money Over The Top
• Adams v Stone: Champ to cruise through
• O'Shea v Montgomery: Ross to Boss the 180s
• Green v Harms: Seeded duo to go all the way
• Van de Pas v Norris: Chuck to use experience
• Winstanley v Ten Berge: Over The Top of the 180s
• Waites v Boulton: Waites has Scott the lot
• Hankey v Barden: Out for the Count
• Phillips v Harms: Welshman to keep Wes at Harms length
• Adams v Mitchell: First round tester for the champ
• Fitton v Green: Dazzling Darryl to get off to a flyer