AS DEBUTS go LockupTispter’s wasn’t half bad. Two wins from three tips meant it was a profitable start on the first day of the World Grand Prix in Dublin.
But for Peter Wright missing four doubles to win his match it would have been a full house for LockupTipster and he’s hoping to continue his winning form into the second day. His tips are definitely worth watching and here they are…
Winners from the final eight matches on Monday night will form the last 16 to be played Tuesday and Wednesday. First up is Andrew Gilding versus Simon Whitlock and the players have never met on TV before, although have played three times on the floor. Gilding currently leads 2-1 in the head to head, although the pair have clashed just once on the circuit this year back in July, where Goldfinger edged it 6-5.
Bookies have the former European Champion at a 5/6 favourite with Gilding at 5/4. Goldfinger has not made much impact on the circuit since a semi final at a floor event back in July.
Whitlock in contrast has had similar form, so pricing this goes with the experience. Whitlock was knocked out the first round last year, whereas Gilding made a second round exit to Phil Taylor. We know that Whitlock has been working hard on his doubles, and has a reputation for his finishing. This could go either way, but will stick my neck out with Whitlock to edge this one to kick-start his move towards getting back into the Premier League next February.
Next up is Justin Pipe facing the Bronze Adonis Steve Beaton. Both trying to overturn their 2-0 exits from the 2014 competitions in the first round. Those that read my tournament preview should have seen that I did fancy Beaton to win this, but had priced Steve at 6/4. One bookie was offering this, but has since shortened to best 10/7, so in decimal terms 2.43 – between 7/5 and 29/20.
Pipe leads the head to head 3-1. The pair have never met on TV, nor have they met in three and a half years. With Beaton you get a smooth consistent action, whereas Pipe is a more deliberate slow burning player which in my view can halt rhythm. I do think this game could go all the way and Coral are offering evens on the game seeing 11 or more legs.
The next game is between veterans Mervyn King and Terry Jenkins, with the head to head tied at 10 apiece with one draw. It is worth noting Jenkins has won all of the last five meetings ending a drought of nearly two and a half years of six successive defeats. Both of the two meetings in the last year have been in front of a crowd, with Jenkins winning both with some comfort.
When I saw the draw, this game stood out and for good reason. We have seen the way King can succumb under the pressure, and Jenkins seems to thrive with the pressure on. King will be looking at his trademark D16 with Jenks on Tops. Jenkins is 5/6 with Betfair and I think Terry can equal the value of successive wins versus his bout of successive defeats.
Last up is the finale of the evening between Thornton and Gurney. The pair have a head to head of 2-0 to Thornton with both meetings in the last 15 months or so. Gurney is the Irish competitor and will have home crowd on his side as they toe the oche late on Monday evening. Gurney has made three last eight or better appearances on the floor this season including a quarter final on Friday.
Thornton pocketed a European Tour title back in July as well as a more recent semi final in another European Tour competition. I think the class between the two competitors will show as the far more experienced Thornton is fairly good on his doubles, and should be able to win this with some comfort. I find it difficult to make a case for Gurney winning this, or even taking a set and with a 7/5 shot on Thornton winning 2-0.
Whitlock to beat Gilding – 4/5 888Sport
Pipe/Beaton – over 10.5 legs – 1/1 Coral
Jenkins to beat King – 5/6 Betfair
Thornton to beat Gurney 2-0 – 7/5 888sport