ROB CROSS feels ready to claim his first televised title since being crowned World Champion at the BetVictor World Matchplay.

The world number three made his Winter Gardens debut last year, defeating Ian White in round one before going out at the hands of Adrian Lewis in the last 16.

Cross has enjoyed a return to form in recent weeks, reaching back-to-back World Series of Darts finals in Las Vegas and Shanghai, and is confident of producing his best form in Blackpool.

"I feel ready to perform to the best of my ability," said Cross, who will take on Mervyn King in the opening round.

Rob Cross (Lawrence Lustig, PDC)

This is only the beginning for me

"A lot has changed in the last 12 months, I really enjoyed making my debut at the Winter Gardens last year - it was a unique experience playing there.

"I'm pleased with how far I've come since I played here last year but now I'm focused on maintaining my high position on the rankings and pushing on - I want the number one spot.

"This is only the beginning for me, I believe in myself and I feel my fitness has improved over the last few weeks which is also helping me.

"Mervyn is a good player but I'm going to produce and I'm going to play well so if he's going to beat me he's going to have to play better than me."

Winter Gardens (PDC)

Watch Rob in action at The BetVictor World Matchplay; a limited number of tickets are still available from the Winter Gardens Box Office by calling 0844 856 111 or in person.

The BetVictor World Matchplay will be televised live on Sky Sports and worldwide through the PDC's broadcast partners, as well as through PDCTV-HD for Rest of the World Subscribers (outside of UK, Ireland & Netherlands).

2018 BetVictor World Matchplay
Schedule of Play
Saturday July 21 (7pm)

First Round
Adrian Lewis v James Wilson
Dave Chisnall v Keegan Brown
Michael van Gerwen v Jeffrey de Zwaan
Michael Smith v Jonny Clayton

Sunday July 22
Afternoon Session (1pm)
First Round
Darren Webster v Steve Lennon
Ian White v Max Hopp
Gerwyn Price v Joe Cullen
Daryl Gurney v Steve West

Evening Session (7.30pm)
First Round
Mensur Suljovic v Steve Beaton
Gary Anderson v Stephen Bunting
Rob Cross v Mervyn King
Raymond van Barneveld v Kyle Anderson

Monday July 23 (7pm)
First Round
Kim Huybrechts v John Henderson
Simon Whitlock v Richard North
James Wade v Jermaine Wattimena
Peter Wright v Jelle Klaasen

Tuesday July 24 (7pm)
Second Round
Chisnall/Brown v Smith/Clayton
Gurney/West v Price/Cullen
Van Gerwen/De Zwaan v Lewis/Wilson
G Anderson/Bunting v Van Barneveld/K Anderson

Wednesday July 25 (7pm)
Second Round
Whitlock/North v Wade/Wattimena
Suljovic/Beaton v White/Hopp
Cross/King v Webster/Lennon
Wright/Klaasen v Huybrechts/Henderson

Thursday July 26 (7pm)
Quarter-Finals x2

Friday July 27 (7pm)
Quarter-Finals x2

Saturday July 28 (7pm)
Semi-Finals

Sunday July 29 (7pm)
Final

Format:
First Round - Best of 19 legs
Second Round - Best of 21 legs
Quarter-Finals - Best of 31 legs
Semi-Finals - Best of 33 legs
Final - Best of 35 legs

Prize Fund:
Winner - £115,000
Runner-Up - £55,000
Semi-Finalists - £30,000
Quarter-Finalists - £17,500
Second Round Losers - £11,000
First Round Losers - £7,000
Total - £500,000