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Gabriel Clemens capable of showing his early promise

German can get the better of Andrew Gilding

Andrew Gilding has a tough draw
1 of 1

ITV4, midday Friday

The opening rounds of the Coral UK Open are set to be hit by a smattering of withdrawals as players struggle to make it to Minehead.

Heavy snow around the country made it difficult for some and impossible for others to arrive at Butlin's.

Among the early casualties were Irish aces Willie O’Connor and Mick McGowan, who had been scheduled to play Andy Hamilton and Dirk van Duijvenbode respectively. Their opponents have, therefore, been handed byes into round two.

The chaos comes just 24 hours after round five of the Premier League in Exeter was cancelled due to the weather. That left the PDC with the headache of having to squeeze five fixtures in between next Thursday and Judgement Night on March 29.

Back to Minehead, and one player who had got in his car on Thursday and was heading south from Bradford was Joe Cullen. However, he has a slipped disc.

Rockstar strained his back last week and is determined to play though he has to be worth taking on if he’s in any sort of discomfort against Spain’s Jose Justicia, who was good enough to reach the last eight of the first UK Open qualifier a few weeks ago.

One player you may hear plenty of this year is Gabriel Clemens, a semi-finalist at last autumn’s World Masters (Jamie Hughes was his biggest scalp in the WDF event) who went on to win a tour card in January at the first attempt.

The 34-year-old German takes on Andrew Gilding and shouldn’t be the outsider.

Recommendation
G Clemens
2pts Evs Betway, Coral, Ladbrokes


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Among the early casualties were Irish aces Willie O’Connor and Mick McGowan
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