Van Barneveld tells Peter Wright ‘it’s my stage’ before tie between world champs

Raymond van Barneveld has told Peter Wright “it’s my stage” ahead of the meeting of the two darts legends at the German Darts Open tonight.

Five-time world champion Van Barneveld rolled back the years with a clinical display to see off Ian White in Jena on Friday, hitting six doubles from 10 attempts.

The 55-year-old punished nine missed doubles from White during the contest and finished with a flourish as legs of 13 and 11 darts sealed the win. Van Barneveld now plays reigning world champion Wright in a highlight of the second round ties.

READ MORE: Raymond van Barneveld turns to meditation in bid to revive darts comeback

There is great respect between the pair, who have seven world titles between them, but Barney is in bullish mood as he looks to make the most of a rare appearance at a European Tour event.

"I'm happy with the win and looking forward to tomorrow," said Van Barneveld after beating White. "I love to play Peter – I love him to bits, but tomorrow it's my stage.

"We all know what he can do, but he's struggling sometimes and if I play my good game I can beat him – but I have to play really well."

What’s your favourite Raymond van Barneveld moment? Tell us in the comments section below.

Wright has recently returned to action after having surgery gallbladder removed and hopes the health issues which have blighted their year are behind him.

Martin Lukeman was the day's most impressive performer with a superb 103.58 average in his 6-1 win over Gabriel Clemens. The German averaged over 107 in reply, winning his only leg with a 13-darter, but Lukeman posted two 12-dart legs and sealed the victory with a 13-darter of his own to set up a clash with Rob Cross.

The pre-tournament withdrawals of Michael van Gerwen, Michael Smith, Adrian Lewis and Darren Webster meant that four players received a Bye in the first round.

Saturday's second round sees the 16 seeded players enter the £140,000 event, with the tournament set to conclude on Sunday across two sessions in Jena.


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