THE 2017 World Matchplay will be the 24th annual staging of the World Matchplay The tournament will take place at the Winter Gardens in Blackpool from 22–30 July 2017.
The current defending Champion Michael van Gerwen is again the bookmaker favourite to retain his crown.
The coverage will be shown LIVE on Sky Sports arena throughout its duration.
Michael van Gerwen will be looking to defend his crown again in 2017 after an epic route to the final last year. The green machines pathway is by no means an easy feat.
- Michael van Gerwen Vs Stephen Bunting
- Simon Whitlock Vs Kyle Anderson
- Phil Taylor Vs Gerwyn Price
- Raymond van Barneveld Vs Joe Cullen
- Adrian Lewis Vs Steve Beaton
- Ian White Vs Rob Cross
- Dave Chisnall Vs Mervin King
- Kim Huybrechts Vs Alan Norris
- Gary Anderson Vs Christian Kist
- Benito van de Pas Vs Darryl Gurney
- Mensur Suljovic Vs John Henderson
- Jelle Klassen Vs Justin Pipe
- Peter Wright Vs James Wilson
- Rob Thornton Vs Cristo Reyes
- James Wade Vs Darren Webster
- Michael Smith Vs Steve West
Looking at each quarter briefly MVG will have quite the task of disposing of Bunting followed by a tricky second round between one of team Australia. With a possible quarter final against Taylor, who is appearing in his last Matchplay what better chance Phil will have to potentially take on the world number one MVG one more time. Similar could be said for Taylor and Barney one more time although I'm sure Gerwyn Price and Joe Cullen will want to end this possibility!
MVG is 3/10 to reach the Semi Final and 8/15 to reach the final. Taylor is 7's to win his quarter, Barney 12's all the way to Cullen at 100/1.
Bookmakers have priced MVG in such a way to deter many backers but some shorter price backers may still take the 3/10 or 8/15.
Quarter two may provide a surprise especially with danger man Rob Cross looking to make an impact on the winter garden stage. Lewis has been outside the game dealing with a health issue and Steve Beaton can best jackpot here depending on if Lewis is 100% match fit.
Ian White has a tricky task against Rob Cross where if both bring their A-game could take this to a deciding leg
Chisnall is certainly in better form recently with Mervin King a recent European Tour finalist in his way and Kim Huybrechts could be in danger from a Alan Norris that any player would be fearful of.
Bookmakers have Chisnall hot at 9/4 to make the semi finals with Lewis 3/1, Cross 13/2 all the way to Beaton out at 25/1.
Norris has the credentials at 16's but White and potentially Chizzy before the quarter finals wants a tad more than the 16's on offer.
Quarter 3 has a potential twist with Anderson red hot to get past an out of sought Kist playing the winner of Pas and Gurney. Superchin Gurney defeated Anderson last weekend in Vegas and has the ability to stun the double world champion again.
Who the winner of that mini section could play is most likely to be Suljovic but Klaasen if his wrist injury is fully healed could pose a danger although Justin Pipe could use this platform as a turning point of his season. Never underestimate the World 32 John Henderson although will need some luck to maintain his momentum versus Mensur. Anderson is short at 4/7 to reach the semi final with Mensur at 6/1 and Gurney a real possible at 10/1 here could be worth a punt.
Quarter 4 has all sorts of potential with Snakebite the obvious favourite at even money with Betfair with Michael Smith tempting at 11/2. Steve West is placed at 80/1 so quite the outsider.
Some may argue since the UK Open win Wright has not capitalised at the World Series. I'd rather be one to see how the first round pans out here in this quarter
Looking at some of the ante post markets any that are not covered will be mentioned in in round one's edition. Admittedly Bwin are taking on the highest round one checkout and the line is 160.50. Okay this involves a bull finish so all those out your seats rushing for your devices hold back for a moment.
Take stock that sixteen games, thirty-two competitors with a ball park average game of fifteen legs each so on that basis 240 chances for the BIG out versus how many realistic outs will be left somewhere between 24-36 probable attempts at this and 17/20 it can be warranted why people might be interested but are you?
The same firm take a line of 140.50 maximums for round one. Again a straight line calculation of 141/16 is 8.8125 maximums per game. I promise you readers will not see this sort of analysis in print anywhere else. You have to admit the more games that see 10+ in the game will compensate for the 3-4 games which may see fewer than expected and at 17/20 will have a fair chance of landing! With some of the big hitters playing Monday you may need them to close the slack left by other sessions!
Round one bets will follow!