Dave Chisnall will face Robert Thornton in round two of the BetVictor World Matchplay on Tuesday night after seeing off Dutch youngster Benito van de Pas.
The Morecambe ace prevailed in a tight battle, winning 10-7 at the Winter Gardens in Blackpool on Saturday evening.
Chisnall came from a leg down to open up a 4-1 lead with the aid of an 11-darter and a 115 finish, only for van de Pas to take out 115 himself as he cut the gap to 5-4.
He then finished a brilliant 135 on the bull to level at seven-all and set up an interesting finale.
Chisnall however took out 68 to edge back ahead as the tension rose, and capitalised on missed doubles in the next two legs to secure his spot in the last 16.
He said: “Benito’s done the business against me before on TV but it was my night tonight and I’m very relieved to win.
“I’m very confident at the moment and I felt good tonight.
“I played okay in patches, and if I start like I did today I can give anyone a game and it should be a cracker against Robert Thornton - he’s always dangerous.”
Reigning World Grand Prix champion Thornton celebrated his first-ever win at the World Matchplay at the seventh attempt as he overcame debutant Josh Payne.
He said: “I’m very, very relieved.
“I’ve lost here six times so I was due a win - I was alright until it came to hitting that last double and it was the smallest double you’ll ever see!
“It’s Josh’s first time up there and it’s going to be a factor but he didn’t play the way he’s been doing on the floor.
“He missed a few doubles and let me in in one of the legs.
“In the past couple of years I’ve lost close games, so it was a big relief for me and my family to win this one.”