Price survives major scare to edge out Huybrechts in sudden-death thriller

Gerwyn Price survived a major scare as he defied a hostile atmosphere at Alexandra Palace to prevail in a thrilling sudden-death leg against Kim Huybrechts in the third round at the World Darts Championship.

Continue reading “Price survives major scare to edge out Huybrechts in sudden-death thriller”

Wright dumps out Price in tetchy tussle to set up MVG finale!

Michael van Gerwen and Peter Wright will collide in the World Darts Championship final on New Year’s Day after recording 6-3 victories over Nathan Aspinall and Gerwyn Price respectively on an action-packed night of semi-final action at Alexandra Palace.

The night felt slightly subdued in terms of the standard, with Wright’s 98.39 average the highest of the semi-finalists, although there was plenty of fireworks in his controversial clash against the enigmatic Price, with the pair refusing to shake hands following their tetchy tussle.

Wright and Price have contested two major finals with the spoils being shared and although the pair are friends away from the oche, there weren’t many pleasantries exchanged in the capital as Wright progressed to set up a repeat of the 2014 finale against Van Gerwen.

“Before the match me and Gezzy were winding each other up. He said he was going to win the first two sets and I would change darts, I like him but I don’t appreciate what he did. He wanted me to concentrate and I did, there you go, you lost,” the Scot told Sky Sports Darts.

Van Gerwen was nowhere near his blistering best against Aspinall, who had darts to win four of the opening five sets. The Dutchman led 3-2 and although ‘The Asp’ bravely battled away, he was unable to halt MvG’s title charge.

Michael van Gerwen 6-3 Nathan Aspinall

For the fourth time in five matches, Van Gerwen registered an average below 100, but he remains on course to retain the Sid Waddell Trophy courtesy of a battling 6-3 victory against UK Open champion Aspinall.

‘The Green Machine’ has not produced the heavily artillery we’ve come to expect from him for the majority of this year’s event, although the world No 1 has relinquished just six sets in a relatively serene progression to his fifth world final in seven years.

Van Gerwen admitted he lacked focus in his quarter-final victory over Darius Labanauskas and labelled his performance ’embarrassing’, therefore we were expecting an emphatic riposte but the expected fireworks were not forthcoming.

Aspinall has performed superbly to reach back-to-back semi-finals at Alexandra Palace but he produced statistically his worst performance in this event and despite Van Gerwen’s struggles, a 92 average was never going to be sufficient to topple the world’s best.

The Dutchman drew first blood in a tightly-contested opening set after Aspinall wired one dart at double six to hit the front, although ‘The Asp’ bounced back with a classy 124 combination to kick off set two, which he wrapped up courtesy of a 14-dart hold – ironically via double six.

The third set was eerily reminiscent of the opening stanza. Aspinall held throw to secure the initiative, although in another set-decider his scoring power deserted him. The UK Open champion threw 18 darts and was unable to register a dart at double, which was duly punished by MVG.

The three-time world champion converted a classy 103 finish to begin set four with a bang, although that was book-ended by a nerveless 110 kill from Aspinall to level up proceedings at two apiece and complete a fourth successive set that was won against the darts.

The fifth set marked another near miss for Aspinall. With the scores locked at 2-2 in the fifth set decider, the Stockport star suffered an extremely unfortunate ‘Robin Hood’ yet he almost salvaged the leg – wiring tops for a double-double 96 outshot.

Van Gerwen exploited his good fortune to capitalise and regain the advantage, before storming to the sixth set in a matter of minutes – reeling off three consecutive legs in 17, 11 and 13 darts – an average of 110 – to establish a two-set cushion.

Aspinall demonstrated the character and resolve that’s seen him break into the world’s top ten as he responded with a clean sweep of his own in set seven. The 28-year-old registered legs of 12, 16 and 14 darts to reduce the arrears to 4-3, although he was unable to make further inroads.

The eighth set went the distance and Aspinall knew a precious break of throw would have squared proceedings at 4-4. Nevertheless, Van Gerwen held firm to move to the brink of victory and after striking early in set nine, the 30-year-old closed it out to maintain his bid for title number four.

Peter Wright 6-3 Gerwyn Price

Price produced a scintillating display to dismantle ‘Snakebite’ in last month’s Grand Slam final but ‘The Iceman’ was unrecognisable in this contest as he was denied a spot in his first World Championship final.

The pair squandered 74 darts at double in an error-strewn affair, although Wright comprehensively outscored Price in all departments, posting 31 scores of 140+ compared to Price’s 16, whilst the Scot also landed 16 maximums – seven more than the third seed.

Price’s form has fluctuated throughout the event and he was plagued by inconsistency once again – averaging just 89.94 in a lethargic display, as Wright kept his cool to reel off the final three sets, averaging 98.39 to reach his first world final since 2014.

Wright drew first blood in a nervy opening stanza, firing in a stunning 11-darter against the throw. The Scot was comprehensively outscoring the Grand Slam champion but Price somehow restored parity, conjuring up a 150 set-up shot and pinning double 10 for a 15-dart leveller in set two.

Price had quipped that Wright would be lucky to win a set before a dart was thrown and the colourful Scot gave the former Rugby star a nudge and chuckled as he headed off for the first interval, although the humour wasn’t reciprocated by Price, who appeared agitated from the outset.

‘The Iceman’ responded to winning the second set with his trademark exuberant celebrations right in front of Wright, which raised eyebrows with many, particularly when considering Price’s infamous history with the Darts Regulation Authority.

Nevertheless, this appeared to inspire a brief flurry from the Welshman – finishes of 72 and 100 saw him wrap up the third set, only for ‘Snakebite’ to claim the fourth without reply – averaging over 107 in the process.

The former UK Open champion was completely monopolising the scoring stakes as he kicked off set five with legs of 12 and 13 darts, only to squander four set darts moments later. However, he made amends in the fifth set decider – converting a clinical 81 kill for a 12-dart break.

The beleaguered world No 3 was being emphatically outplayed but he somehow restored parity at three sets apiece in a dramatic sixth stanza – capitalising on more profligacy from Wright to break, which he followed up with a 15-dart break.

Price secured the early initiative in set seven with a sumptuous 11-darter and the tide appeared to be turning, although he then suffered an inexplicable slump – losing six of the next seven legs and averaging 87 and 78 in the respective sets as Wright established a two-set buffer.

The former Rugby star was at the point of no return and Wright converted 98 and 72 finishes to move to the cusp of victory and despite handing Price an unexpected reprieve after frittering away SIX match darts, the seventh seed eventually sealed the deal via double one.

Photo Credit: Lawrence Lustig/PDC

Josh’s Dartistry Darts Podcast Episode Nine!

In our ninth episode of the Josh’s Dartistry Podcast, Josh Gorton is joined by co-host Jon Dean and the returning Neil Conner for our preview show ahead of the William Hill World Darts Championship.

There’s plenty to discuss with all roads leading to the World Darts Championship, which gets underway at the iconic Alexandra Palace on Thursday night.

However, we begin by reflecting on the Players Championship Finals in Minehead, where Daryl Gurney defeated Michael van Gerwen 11-9 in a pulsating final to clinch his second PDC major title last month.

We also have an exclusive interview with ITV4 Darts presenter Jacqui Oatley, who discusses her love of the sport, the growth of darts worldwide and the emerging presence of female broadcasters within sport.

Jacqui Oatley.jpg

Jacqui also expresses her delight at the groundbreaking move which sees two women competing in this year’s PDC World Championship, before she offers her tips for this year’s tournament at the Ally Pally.

The team then look ahead to the World Championship and highlight some of the most eye-catching ties, including a potential showdown between defending champion Rob Cross and World Matchplay semi-finalist Jeffrey de Zwaan in round-two.

Neil provides us with all the odds ahead of the upcoming tournaments, before the team give their predictions for the PDC World Championship, and both the men’s and women’s events at the Lakeside World Championship.

We also have the latest instalment of our newest feature called ‘Lord of The Board’, before Neil tests Josh’s knowledge in another entertaining episode of ‘Challenge Josh’.

The JDP panel then reflect on some of the more interesting darting stories to have appeared in the mainstream media over recent weeks, including an injury-scare for World Masters champion Adam Smith-Neale, before the ninth episode concludes with our traditional Q&A section.

2017 PDC World Championship- Day One Report!

Gary Anderson.jpg

Gary Anderson began his world title defence with an emphatic straight sets victory as Michael Smith, Kevin Painter and Jamie Lewis also tasted victory on the opening night of the 2017 PDC World Championships at the Alexandra Palace on Thursday evening.

Anderson began his title defence with a routine whitewash triumph against debutant Mark Frost. ‘The Flying Scotsman’ averaged 96.16, landed five maximums and converted 38% of his double attempts to record an emphatic victory over the PDPA qualifier, who entertained the Ally Pally crowd despite averaging a miserly 74.

Anderson clinched the first set without reply despite averaging a modest 79. He wired the bullseye for a majestic 170 finish in the first leg before eventually cleaning up on D4. The Scot hit the same target to extend his cushion after ‘Frosty’ missed three darts to break, before the world champion eventually hit D1 to secure a scrappy opener.

‘The Flying Scotsman’ kicked off the second set with his first maximum before pinning tops for a 13-darter and his fourth successive leg. Frost was floundering and Anderson clinically converted a 116 finish on tops to continue the procession, before registering back-to-back maximums and pinning D10 for a 12-darter and a two-set lead. Continue reading “2017 PDC World Championship- Day One Report!”

Anderson retains his World Championship title in record-breaking final!

Anderson final

Gary Anderson retained his World Championship title with a thrilling 7-5 victory over Two-Time World Champ Adrian Lewis at the Alexandra Palace on Sunday evening.

It was a pulsating contest, which included 34 maximums- breaking the record for the most 180s ever hit in a professional game of darts.

Anderson, who secured his maiden World title last year with a 7-6 win over Phil Taylor, now joins a very exclusive list of players who have retained their first World Championship title. Lewis himself achieved this feat in 2012, whilst both Eric Bristow and Raymond van Barneveld also successfully defended their first world titles.

Nevertheless, ‘The Flying Scotsman’ made a very indifferent start to this year’s final; Lewis clinched the first set with consummate ease, by breaking Anderson’s throw in the fourth leg, on D5. The Scot was averaging a miserly 79 and appeared unsettled.

Continue reading “Anderson retains his World Championship title in record-breaking final!”

Resilient Raymond produces magnificent comeback to reach World Championship semis!


Barney v Smith
Photo: Lawrence Lustig/PDC

Raymond van Barneveld produced a magnificent comeback from 3-0 down against world number 8 Michael Smith, to reach his third World Championship semi-final in the last four years, at the Alexandra Palace.

On the anniversary of van Barneveld’s iconic 2007 World Final victory against Phil Taylor at the Circus Tavern, where he also trailed 3-0, Raymond repeated the feat to secure a nail-biting 5-4 triumph in an enthralling tussle at the Palace.

Smith made a blistering start to the contest, winning nine of the opening twelve legs to establish a commanding advantage, but the Five-Time World Champion showed his class to complete a masterful recovery, just 72 hours after his heroics against his compatriot Michael van Gerwen.

The contest began at a rip-roaring pace. Raymond van Barneveld took out 121 on the bullseye for a crucial break of throw in the third leg, but Smith delivered an instant riposte, taking out 97 in unorthodox fashion; D19 D20, with Barney sat on D20 to clinch the set.

Smith had the advantage of throw in the fifth leg and kicked off proceedings with a maximum, missing two darts at D20 for an 11-darter. However, van Barneveld missed the bull for a magnificent maximum 170 finish, before ‘Bully Boy’ returned to claim the opener in 13-darts.

Continue reading “Resilient Raymond produces magnificent comeback to reach World Championship semis!”

Brilliant Barney stuns MvG in one of greatest games in darting history!


Photo: Lawrence Lustig/PDC

Raymond van Barneveld produced an absolutely astonishing performance to stun World Number One Michael van Gerwen in the last 16 of the World Championships, in one of the greatest games of darts ever staged at the Alexandra Palace.

Michael has enjoyed an incredibly dominant 2015, winning a staggering eighteen titles and enjoying a 23-match unbeaten run since October. However, his veteran compatriot produced one of the best performances of his career to overcome MvG, who averaged an incredible 106.

Considering Raymond is a Five-Time World Champion and one of the most decorated individuals in the history of the game, the fact that this performance ranks so highly on his all-time list, illustrates just how superbly he performed.

Continue reading “Brilliant Barney stuns MvG in one of greatest games in darting history!”

Brilliant Barney beats Bunting in epic battle!

RvB v Bunting

Raymond van Barneveld defied a staggering fifteen maximums from Stephen Bunting to prevail in an epic World Championship second-round contest at the Alexandra Palace on Sunday evening.

Van Barneveld, who became a grandfather to Mason in the early hours of Sunday morning, produced five sensational ton-plus checkouts to defeat Bunting at the Ally Pally for the second year in succession. This victory sets up a tantalising last 16 clash against World Number 1 Michael van Gerwen.

However, the Five-Time World Champion didn’t enjoy an ideal start, as he was plagued by double-trouble in the opening set. Van Barneveld converted just one double from ten attempts, enabling ‘The Bullet’ to clinch the first set.

Continue reading “Brilliant Barney beats Bunting in epic battle!”

Day Seven: Klaasen produces performance of round-one, as Lewis eases through!


Adrian Lewis began his assault for a third World Title with a comprehensive 3-0 victory over two-time Lakeside semi-finalist Jan Dekker, whilst Jelle Klaasen produced the performance of the tournament thus far in dismantling Joe Cullen on the final night of round-one action at the Alexandra Palace, on Wednesday evening.

Lewis averaged 99.35 in defeating the former BDO man, but Klaasen stole the show, averaging 103.92 and hitting 50% of his doubles against an unfortunate Cullen, who acquitted himself well for the vast majority of the encounter.

Klaasen cruised to the opening set, winning it without reply. Cullen struggled for fluency, hitting just one score of 140 or better. Jelle capitalised on this, posting his first maximum and averaging 94 to establish an early lead.

Continue reading “Day Seven: Klaasen produces performance of round-one, as Lewis eases through!”

Barney breezes through to World Championship second-round!

Barney GSOD semi-final
Photo: Lawrence Lustig/PDC

Five-Time World Champion Raymond van Barneveld kicked off his World Championship campaign with an emphatic 3-0 victory over his compatriot and close friend Dirk van Duijvenbode at the Alexandra Palace on Sunday evening.

Ironically, it was van Barneveld who encouraged van Duijvenbode to take up darts professionally, and Raymond was key to the youngster gaining sponsorship from Unicorn. However, the master prevailed against the apprentice on this occasion.

Barney edged through in a tight opening set. There was a significant disparity in the averages, but this wasn’t reflected in the scoreline. Raymond was averaging 13 points higher than his opponent, but Van Duijvenbode took out 100, and then 110 to force a fifth and deciding leg, but van Barneveld held comfortably to clinch the set.

Continue reading “Barney breezes through to World Championship second-round!”

Suljovic and Caven progress in style, as Murnan dumps out Hamilton.

Mensur Suljovic and Jamie Caven cruised through to the second round of the World Championships, whilst debutant Joe Murnan dumped out former World finalist Andy Hamilton in a gruelling battle, on Sunday afternoon at Alexandra Palace.

The performance of the afternoon was unquestionably produced by Suljovic, who averaged over 99 in defeating Jermaine Wattimena. The Austrian grew in confidence as the game progressed, winning 7 of the remaining 8 legs to secure his second-round spot.

Despite this, the first set was extremely hard-fought. Mensur struggled for fluency in the scoring department, and squandered four set darts in the fifth leg. Wattimena, despite busting 64 in the previous visit, returned to clinch the set.

Continue reading “Suljovic and Caven progress in style, as Murnan dumps out Hamilton.”

‘Rapid’ Ricky stuns Whitlock, as Taylor breezes through!

Ricky Evans
Photo: Lawrence Lustig

Phil Taylor began his pursuit of a 17th World Title with a comprehensive 3-0 victory over Japanese qualifier Keita Ono, whilst Ricky Evans produced a miraculous comeback to stun former-World finalist Simon Whitlock on Saturday night at the Alexandra Palace.

Whitlock and Evans contested arguably one of the best first-round matches in the tournament’s history, but a lot of the focus was on Taylor changing his equipment prior to his World Championship campaign. Taylor has altered his darts from 26g to 22g, although he was never seriously tested by Ono, dropping just one leg.

Earlier in the evening, Ono comprehensively defeated Alex Tagarao 2-0 in the preliminary tie, dropping just one leg in the process. The Japanese soft-tip star averaged a very respectable 91.79, hitting a tremendous 75% on his doubles. Unfortunately, Keita wasn’t able to replicate his performance against Phil.

Continue reading “‘Rapid’ Ricky stuns Whitlock, as Taylor breezes through!”

MvG survives enormous scare as Pallett and K Anderson dispatch Huybrechts and Dolan!


Michael van Gerwen was given an enormous scare as he survived a nail-biting tie-break in the first-round of the World Championships against German qualifier Rene Eidams at Alexandra Palace on Friday evening.

Elsewhere, Dave Pallett caused the shock of the tournament thus far to dump out 12th seed Kim Huybrechts, whilst Kyle Anderson dispatched World Number 18 Brendan Dolan with consummate ease.

Rene Eidams had beaten Thanawat Gaweenuntawong 2-0 in the night’s opening preliminary-tie, but it was an abject contest; Eidams averaged just 69 in prevailing in straight-sets.

Nobody expected the 26-year-old to produce the display he did against MvG; it was a stunning performance that will certainly live in the memory!

Continue reading “MvG survives enormous scare as Pallett and K Anderson dispatch Huybrechts and Dolan!”

World Championship Day Two: Kist and Webster safely through to second-round.

 Former World Champions Mark Webster and Christian Kist both progressed through to the second-round of the World Championships, whilst the seeded duo of Justin Pipe and John Henderson were beaten at Alexandra Palace on Friday afternoon.

2012 Lakeside World Champion Kist, eased into the second-round of the World Championships after demolishing 20th seed Justin Pipe. Kist reeled off seven consecutive legs to seal the win, dropping just two legs against an abject Pipe, who averaged a mere 75.

Kist snatched a tight opening set and never looked back from that point onwards. Pipe held throw with a classy 104 checkout in the opening leg, but Kist responded with a 13-darter.

Continue reading “World Championship Day Two: Kist and Webster safely through to second-round.”

Day One: Anderson begins World Championship defence in style!

Gary Anderson

Gary Anderson began the defence of his World Championship title with a comprehensive straight-sets victory over Andy Boulton at the Alexandra Palace on Thursday evening. The Scot was professional throughout and averaged just under 100 en route to victory.

Anderson made a stunning start, hitting 5 perfect darts to secure an 11-darter in the opening leg. He then repeated the feat in leg two; hitting consecutive 140’s and producing a clinical 81 finish in two darts. The third leg was a scrappier affair, but the Flying Scotsman hit D10 to move 1-0 ahead.

Continue reading “Day One: Anderson begins World Championship defence in style!”

World Championship Contenders-Michael van Gerwen

Photo: Lawrence Lustig/PDC

As the 2016 PDC World Darts Championship kicks off tonight, I assess the chances of a man who has dominated the world of darts in 2015. Can he maintain his dominance to seal World Championship glory?

  1. Michael van Gerwen

Michael van Gerwen’s darting dominance over the last 12 months has only been matched or replicated by a certain Phil Taylor. The World Number One has won an astonishing 18 titles in this calendar year, and he has his sights firmly set on a second World Championship title in 2016.

Continue reading “World Championship Contenders-Michael van Gerwen”

‘Proud’ De Zwaan looks ahead to ‘dream’ Ally Pally debut!

De Zwaan

Today, I had the opportunity to catch up with 19-year-old Dutch star Jeffrey De Zwaan, who will be making his PDC World Championship debut at the Alexandra Palace this year.

The Dutchman, mentored by Five-Time World Champion Raymond van Barneveld, earned his tour-card at Q-School this January and has since broken into the world’s top 64 on the PDC Order of Merit.

He competed in his maiden PDC TV tournament two months ago, and he is determined to make a big impression when he faces World Number 8 Michael Smith in his first-round clash at the World Championships next Monday.

Continue reading “‘Proud’ De Zwaan looks ahead to ‘dream’ Ally Pally debut!”

World Championship Contenders- Phil Taylor

P Taylor.jpg
Photo: Lawrence Lustig/PDC

With the 2016 PDC World Championships set to begin at the Alexandra Palace tomorrow night, I assess the chances of the man who has won the World Championship title on a record 16 occasions….

2. Phil Taylor

After enduring one of the most testing years in his professional career, Phil Taylor will be vying for his 17th World Championship crown when he begins his campaign at the Ally Pally on Saturday evening.

Continue reading “World Championship Contenders- Phil Taylor”

World Championship Contenders- Gary Anderson

G Anderson
Photo: Lawrence Lustig/PDC

The 2016 PDC World Darts Championship gets under way in just over 48 hours. World Number One Michael van Gerwen is red-hot favourite for the crown, whilst Phil Taylor is second favourite to win his 17th World title. Nevertheless, you cannot write off the defending Champion!

3. Gary Anderson

Reigning World-Champion Gary Anderson will be hoping for a repeat of last year’s success when he begins the defence of his crown at Alexandra Palace on Thursday.

Continue reading “World Championship Contenders- Gary Anderson”

World Championship Contenders- Adrian Lewis

Adrian Lewis WC

Today I assess the World Championship chances of Two-Time World Champion and number five seed Adrian Lewis, who is vying to replicate his 2011 and 2012 successes at Alexandra Palace this year.

4. Adrian Lewis

Adrian Lewis loves the Alexandra Palace stage. He famously recorded his maiden PDC World title victory in 2011, beating Gary Anderson 7-5 in a pulsating final. He then repeated this success the following year, as he defeated his fellow Stokie Andy Hamilton 7-3 in the final.

Continue reading “World Championship Contenders- Adrian Lewis”

World Championship Contenders- Peter Wright

Peter Wright WC
Photo: Lawrence Lustig/PDC

The 2016 PDC World Championships are just a matter of days away, and in this article, I assess one of the biggest contenders for this year’s title….Peter Wright’s progression over the past couple of years has been remarkable. But can he go one step further than two years ago and claim the Sid Waddell trophy?

5. Peter Wright

It seems to be a case of when, not if, Peter Wright will win a PDC TV major title. Snakebite has produced the best darts of his career in a year which has seen him establish a spot in the world’s top four.

Continue reading “World Championship Contenders- Peter Wright”

World Championship Contenders- James Wade

Wade WC
Photo: Lawrence Lustig/PDC

The start of the 2016 PDC World Championships is now less than a week away and the anticipation is building. There are a host of big names capable of winning the crown this year, although there aren’t many players more adept at winning major titles than a certain James Wade.

6. James Wade

James Wade is one of the most decorated players in the history of the PDC. ‘The Machine’ has won eight major titles, including the Premier League, World Matchplay and World Grand-Prix.

However, the World Championships is the main piece of silverware that has eluded him in his career thus far. Can he rectify that at Alexandra Palace this year?

Continue reading “World Championship Contenders- James Wade”

World Championship Contenders-Raymond van Barneveld

raymond-van-barneveld pdc
Photo: Lawrence Lustig/PDC

The 2016 PDC World Championships are now just one week away. Michael van Gerwen, Phil Taylor and Gary Anderson are three of the favourites to claim Ally Pally glory. However, today I assess the chances of arguably, the second-greatest darts player in history.

7. Raymond van Barneveld

5-Time World Champion Raymond van Barneveld is seeded 16 for this year’s World Championships; nevertheless, this ranking doesn’t reflect his current form or his undeniable class. Van Barneveld is still a genuine contender for major honours and he may relish the ‘underdog’ tag at Alexandra Palace.

Continue reading “World Championship Contenders-Raymond van Barneveld”

World Championship Contenders- Michael Smith

Michael Smith.jpg
Photo: Lawrence Lustig/PDC

With the 2016 PDC World Championships just nine days away, today I assess the World Championship chances of another St Helen’s star, in the shape of Michael Smith, who enters this tournament as eighth seed.

9. Michael Smith

Michael Smith has enjoyed the best year of his PDC career so far, winning two European Tour events and reaching his maiden PDC major semi-final, just last month. Can Smith come of age and win the big one at Ally Pally in January?

Continue reading “World Championship Contenders- Michael Smith”

World Championship Contenders-Dave Chisnall

Dave Chisnall
Photo: Lawrence Lustig/PDC

With the 2016 PDC World Darts Championships just ten days away, I assess ten of the leading contenders for this year’s title. I begin by talking about a man still searching for his maiden PDC major crown. Can he break his duck by winning the big one?

10. Dave Chisnall

Dave Chisnall has slipped out of the World’s Top 10 over recent months and is seeded 13th for this year’s World Championships; however his ranking doesn’t provide an accurate reflection of his current form.

Continue reading “World Championship Contenders-Dave Chisnall”

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