Big Guns Draw Qualifiers

COLIN LLOYD will open the defence of his Sky Bet World Grand Prix title with a first round match against Irish qualifier Tom Kirby after the draw was made at the CityWest Hotel in Dublin on Wednesday afternoon.

Kirby, a veteran of the Irish darts scene, made his way through the Irish qualifying event earlier in October but faces a tough challenge to make further progress after being pulled out of the hat against the world number one.

"I'm looking forward to defending my title in Dublin," said Lloyd.

"It'll be a tough tournament and having to start on a double over short matches always makes things interesting.

"Tom will be a tough opponent for me but I'm playing well at the moment and am always confident when I'm on the oche."

Phil Taylor, the 12-time World Champion, has also been handed a clash with a local qualifier after drawing Cork's Joe Collins in round one.

Taylor crashed out in a shock first round upset last year when he was defeated by qualifier Andy Callaby in the quick-fire best of three sets format.

Gary Welding, who reached the quarter-finals 12 months ago, has qualified for a second successive year and faces another qualifier in the form of little-known Kevin Harris from Ipswich.

Alan Warriner, the only player other than Taylor and Lloyd to have won the tournament when he triumphed back in 2001, has been paired with Alex Roy whilst other eye-catching match-ups include Roland Scholten v Dennis Priestley, Peter Manley v Denis Ovens and Bob Anderson v Andy Jenkins.

CLICK HERE to see the full first round draw

CLICK HERE to see the schedule of play

CLICK HERE to see the pre-tournament odds with Sky Bet

The Sky Bet World Grand Prix features a unique 'double-in, double-out' format where players have to start and end each leg on a double.

It is screened live on Sky Sports throughout the UK and Ireland from the CityWest Hotel, starting on Monday October 24 and ending the following Sunday.

The total prize fund for the event is £100,000, with £20,000 going to the winner.

TICKETS are still available for the 2005 Sky Bet World Grand Prix, to be held at the CityWest Hotel in Dublin this October.

Tickets can be ordered by emailing the CityWest on or calling (from UK) 01 401 0505 or (from Ireland) 00353 1401 0505.

ACCOMMODATION is also available at the Citywest Hotel at the following rates:
Eur 110 single room
Eur 140 double room
Eur 170 triple room
Book now at: