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Lewis stutters into second round

ESPN staff
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Adrian Lewis takes aim © PA Photos
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Two-time defending champion Adrian Lewis survived a scare as he progressed to the second round of the World Darts Championship with victory over Gino Vos.

Lewis struggled to find his form early in the match as Vos took the opening leg, but the Brit recovered to record a 3-1 victory at Alexandra Palace.

Making his debut in the competition, the 22-year-old appeared unfazed against the world champion, making 180 as he romped through the opening set 3-0.

Lewis, who has struggled for form in 2012, looked to be firmly on course to win the second set, only to allow Vos to claw his way back before the Dutchman then squandered chances to force a deciding leg as Lewis drew level at 1-1.

Vos then took a 2-0 lead in the third set, but Lewis showed composure under pressure to land a crucial double five before taking the lead for the first time. It was not until the fourth set that Lewis began to show the form of a world champion, and he grabbed his fifth 180 of the match before wrapping up victory.

"I'm very disappointed with my performance tonight," Lewis told Sky Sports. "However, I got the win and that's the most important thing. I can go away now and try and work on things before I play again next Saturday."

Paul Nicholson booked his place in the second round with a 3-0 victory over Dutchman Co Stompe. The Australian was solid if unspectacular as his opponent put in an inconsistent display.

Nicholson will face UK Open champion Robert Thornton in the second round after the UK Open champion thrashed Magnus Caris 3-0. In the first match on the opening night, Thornton ended the match with a three-dart average of 99 for the loss of a single leg as he cruised to victory.

"It was a bit nerve wracking having to play the first match of the biggest tournament in darts, but I felt quite relaxed by the time I came out on to the stage," Thornton said. "My scoring was a bit rusty at times but my finishing was good. I'm really pleased with how things went tonight and I hope that continues in the next round."

Kevin Painter avoided an upset as he defeated Hong Kong qualifier Leung Chun Nam 3-0 to move into the last-32. The No. 15 seed awaits either Ronnie Baxter or Dennis Priestley.

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