Wayne Mardle came from a set down to beat Ray Carver 3-2 in the first round of the PDC World Darts Championship at Alexandra Palace in London.
Mardle was a three-time semi-finalist at the Circus Tavern
The three-time semi-finalist led the first set 2-1 before American Carver hit back to clinch it 3-2.
Mardle won the second and third sets 3-1 but Carver levelled before the Essex star closed out the match.
Alan Tabern beat Per Laursen 3-1, Mark Walsh beat Adrian Gray 3-2 and Jan van der Rassel beat Colin Lloyd 3-2.
Dutchman Van der Rassel won the deciding fifth set 6-4 after needing two clear legs for victory.
Mardle, the world number nine, said: "I'm over the moon to get through that game.
"I've been playing great on the circuit this year but been atrocious in the TV events. I want to change that and believe I can win this."
Phil "The Power" Taylor, the 13-time world champion, begins his campaign against Michael van Gerwen on Tuesday.
Taylor lost last year's final to Dutchman Raymond van Barneveld, who defected from rival organisation the BDO in February 2006.
The event has switched to North London from the Circus Tavern in Purfleet, Essex, where Taylor won 11 of his world titles.
This year's PDC World Championship runs until New Year's Day, with the winner claiming a cheque for £100,000.