Stephen Bunting reached the last 16 of the William Hill World Darts Championship for the first time in five years by crushing Jonny Clayton 4-0 at the Alexandra Palace yesterday afternoon (Sunday).
The Bullet' from St Helens had too much ammunition for the Welshman, hitting a 95.7 average, five 180s and a highest checkout of 140 as he claimed a second scalp of the competition.
Bunting was exceptional to begin the tie, smashing in his 140 checkout to close the first set 3-0 and then defied a 130-plus check out and a 14-darter from Clayton to edge the second 3-2 .
Clayton responded with a 138 combination in the third, but bowed to the local lad's superior finishing and it was a similar story in the last set .
Bunting said: ''It was my game plan to start well and stay on top and that's how it turned out.
''I felt like I played very well and I'm going to enjoy my Christmas break and prepare for the next game.
And he couldn't have hand-picked a tougher match in the last 16 - a showdown with defending champion and tournament favourite, Dutchman Michael van. Gerwen.
Dave Chisnall, the only other remaining St Helens player in the event,, faces Dutchman Jeffrey De Zwaan tonight (Monday)