The first three days of the PDC World Darts Championship have provided a fair share of upsets with two of the favourites already sent packing before the Christmas break.
The most high profile name to crash out was the 2018 World Champion Rob Cross who lost in straight sets to Belgian number one Kim Huybrechts.
The second seed was one of the favourites to lift the Sid Waddell Trophy on New Year’s Day but lost eight legs in succession as Huybrechts closed in on victory.
The 32- year-old never looked under pressure and finished the game on double 16.
This follows the shock defeat for Raymond van Barneveld who ended his career with a disappointing 3-1 loss to Darin Young.
The former electrician was favourite to topple his rival having won all six of their previous meetings.
The game started in familiar fashion with Cross taking the first leg, hitting his favourite double 18 to take the first leg.
An impressive 116 from Huybrechts saw the Belgian open his account which saw him take the next eight legs in succession including a roof-raising 152 finish.
Cross looked a shell of the man who defeated Phil Taylor in the 2018 World Final and uncharacteristically bust a 130 finish as he looked to rescue the contest.
He averaged around 85 throughout the tie and bowed out having only won two legs overall.
Huybrechts sealed his place in the third round with an impressive 11 darter.
This defeat is a blip in what has been a successful season for Cross who won both the European and World Matchplay titles and reached two more major finals.
Huybrecths will play in the third round on Sunday.
What next for Rob Cross?
Cross will have a few weeks to reflect on this disappointment and will go home to spend some time with his family over the Christmas break.
It’s the first time that Cross has been knocked out at this stage and wont return to the oche until the Masters commences in Milton Keynes in early January.
He hopes to take part in the prestigious Premier League of Darts that starts a month later and will look to go one better than 2019 and win his first league crown.
The man knows as Voltage has taken to social media addressing the fans about his defeat and he has vowed to come back stronger and a better player.
Many fans have responded in their support for the former world champion on Twitter and backed Cross to make a comeback.
Hugely disappointing night to say the least, obviously I’m gutted. Kim played great & good luck to him for the rest of the Worlds.— Rob Cross (@RobCross180) 15 December 2019
I will learn from this. Time for me to re-group hit the reset button & come back an even better player. Thanks for all the messages, means a lot ⚡️ pic.twitter.com/vP0rrHK8Vj
Despite this shock defeat, do not write Cross off in 2020 as he looks to add more success to his already impressive achievements.