Q School 2021: Shepherd & De Vos grab first cards
By Joe Williams 15/02/2021
KIRK Shepherd and Geert De Vos were victorious on Sunday in coming through their respective Q Schools in winning the first two of 29 tour cards on offer at 2021 Q School as Stage Two began in Milton Keynes and Niedernhausen.
Six days prior have seen players compete in Stage 1A and Stage 1B in the hope of securing a place in Stage Two with a total of 96 players across the two stages in the UK securing places in final stage, whereas in Germany, 110 players secured their place across the two stages, whether that was automatically on the day or via their respective order of merits.
Kirk Shepherd, who famously shocked the odds in reaching the 2008 World Championship Final and losing out to John Part, started his Q School campaign at the Stage Two Phase, on the back of losing his PDC status at the end of 2020. But gained it back at the first attempt on Sunday in coming through seven matches with wins over Michael Barnard, Matthew Dennant, Jonathan Wynn, Matt Jackson, Chas Barstow, Martin Lukeman, and Jack Main 6-1 in the decider. The final began with Shepherd racing into a 3-0 lead before Main fired in a 13 dart leg to win his first and only leg of the final as Shepherd rattled off another three legs in quick succession to win the tie 6-1 and return to the PDC Tour for at least the next two years.
Main, who is a practice partner of Darren Webster, reached the decider by recording wins over David Pallett, Lewis Pride, Simon Stevenson, Jason Askew, Lee Evans and Jon Worsley. Unable to win the decider but the Norfolk thrower sits top of the order of merit with five points going into Day Two.
Elsewhere in Milton Keynes, there were early exits for the likes of Fallon Sherrock, Scott Mitchell, Kevin Painter and Jim Williams, who all failed to pick up points on the opening day, with the likes of Robert Thornton and Andrew Gilding currently sitting inside the cut-off places via the order of merit, after the pair both had last 16 runs.
Over in Germany, Geert De Vos gained his Tour Card for the first time in his career with the 2015 BDO World Trophy winner coming through Stage 1B first, before getting to the final stage with the Belgian coming through seven matches, with wins over Jerry Hendriks, Patrik Kovacs, Steven Noster, Michael Unterbuchner, Richard Veenstra, Lorenzo Pronk and Geert Nentjes 6-4 in the decider.
Runner Up, Nentjes, also began his Q School campaign in Stage Two having dropped off the tour at the end of 2020. He reached the decider on Day One having recorded wins over Rowby-John Rodriguez, Johan Engstrom, Pero Ljubic, Robert Marijanovic, Wesley Plaisier and Martin Schindler. Unable to win the decider, but the Dutch ace sits top of the EU Order of Merit on 5 points after the first day of four in Stage Two.
Elsewhere, there were early exits for the likes of Nico Kurz, Ronny Huybrechts and Christian Kist, who failed to pick up any points with 5x World Champion Raymond Van Barneveld sitting inside the cut-off order of merit places after a last 16 run on Day one.
PDC Q School continues on Monday with Day Two of Stage Two with a further two players winning tour cards from Milton Keynes and Niedernhausen with play beginning at 12:00 GMT in UK and 12:00 local time in Germany (11:00 GMT). All live scores and results can be viewed at tv.dartconnect.com.
UK Q School
Kirk Shepherd 6-1 Chas Barstow
Martin Lukeman 6-1 Martin Heneghan
Jack Main 6-4 Lee Evans
Jon Worsley 6-1 Gavin Carlin
Kirk Shepherd 6-5 Martin Lukeman
Jack Main 6-4 Jon Worsley
Kirk Shepherd 6-1 Jack Main
European Q School
Geert De Vos 6-3 Richard Veenstra
Lorenzo Pronk 6-5 Mario Vandenbogaerde
Geert Nentjes 6-5 Wesley Plaisier
Martin Schindler 6-3 Zoran Lerchbacher
Geert De Vos 6-2 Lorenzo Pronk
Geert Nentjes 6-2 Martin Schindler
Geert De Vos 6-4 Geert Nentjes------ENDS-------
Featured image: PDC