2018 champion Rob Cross suffered a surprise second round loss to Dirk van Duijvenbode in a match that went all the way to the deciding leg of the final set ©Getty Images

Former champions Rob Cross and Adrian Lewis both suffered surprise second round defeats at the Professional Darts Corporation (PDC) World Championships on day eight at Alexandra Palace.

Englishman Cross, the champion in 2018, became the highest-profile casualty of the event so far as he suffered a surprise loss to Dirk van Duijvenbode of the Netherlands.

The match went the full distance before van Duijvenbode prevailed in the deciding leg of the final set, when he took out a 99 finish and broke the throw of his opponent to claim a dramatic 3-2 win.

Cross' compatriot Adrian Lewis was also the victim of an upset with the 2011 and 2012 world champion being knocked out by American qualifier Danny Baggish.

Baggish took the first two sets for the loss of only one leg before Lewis cut the deficit.

However, Baggish produced an impressive 170 finish and a crucial checkout on 91 to complete a 3-1 win.

Another second round match that went the distance saw Australian Simon Whitlock triumph over Lithuania's Darius Labanauskas.

Whitlock started strongly with a three-figure scoring average but Labanauskas roared back landing a remarkable 164 checkout to force a decider.

2010 runner-up Whitlock then reeled off a ten darter as he claimed three successive legs and a 3-0 victory.

Two time champion Adrian Lewis was left disappointed after a surprise loss to American qualifier Danny Baggish today ©Getty Images
Two time champion Adrian Lewis was left disappointed after a surprise loss to American qualifier Danny Baggish today ©Getty Images

Eight matches took place across two sessions on a busy eighth day in London, with the other afternoon games seeing Northern Ireland's Brendan Dolan beat Japanese qualifier Edward Foulkes 3-1 and Joe Cullen comfortably defeat fellow Englishman Wayne Jones 3-0.

In the remaining evening matches, Danny Noppert of the Netherlands beat South Africa's Cameron Carolissen, who enjoyed a walkover win in round one after his scheduled opponent and replacement were unable to play because of coronavirus, 3-1.

Elsewhere, South African Devon Petersen beat Ireland's Steve Lennon 3-1 and Dimitri Van Den Bergh of Belgium ended the fairytale run of Paul Lim by emphatically beating the 66-year-old Singaporean 3-0, averaging over 105 in the process.

Tomorrow sees the final day of action before the tournament takes a three day break for Christmas.

Eight more second-round matches are scheduled including two-time champion Gary Anderson of Scotland against Madars Razma of Latvia.

That match had been due to feature on the order of play on Sunday (December 20) but was put back by three days due to Anderson self-isolating after a close contact received a positive coronavirus test.

Organisers today confirmed the remainder of the championships, scheduled to conclude on Sunday January 3 2021, would be played behind closed doors owing to the coronavirus restrictions in place in the host city.

The first day of action on December 15 featured a limited crowd, but since then action has taken place without spectators due to London moving to a tougher set of restrictions, which include the playing of elite sport behind closed doors.