LAST week was a real disappointment as stat heavy bets saw a small loss but the settlement of our antepost bets healed our wounds pretty quickly.
Into phase two tonight and the start of the Race to Finals sees five games with two players battling twice.
Raymond van Barneveld v Daryl Gurney
- Head-to-head: Barney leads 3-1
Daryl Gurney became a father last week as we lost a Darting icon Eric Bristow but has fought tooth and nail to avoid elimination at the first hurdle and is 9/4 to make finals night with Paddy Power.
Last week Barney was just 6/4 on sealing finals night and defeat to Bullyboy has seen his price drift to 3’s at Paddy Power.
The previous meeting saw a tie at 6-6 back in Week One but it was a contest Superchin should have won and crumbled. On the night hitting five 180s building up a 6-3 lead only to not seize all the points
Barney was stunned last week being whitewashed by Michael Smith so not knowing his frame of mind coming into this could swing in favour of the Irishman and feel on the maximums Gurney has Barney’s number at an acceptable 7/10 with Bwin.
Gary Anderson v Peter Wright
- H2H: Anderson leads 24-13
Outside of the Premier League Wright has performed well to make three finals in weeks gone by but managed to make the top eight with just a single win.
Gary Anderson blew a stat heavy bet last week and had attempts to win it for us but is evidently blowing hot and cold.
I feel that Wright generally plays a better game against his fellow Scot and needs to seize the advantage and could see off his average line set at 98.5 at 17/20 with Bwin and Sportingbet is worth a small play.
Simon Whitlock v Michael van Gerwen
- H2H: Van Gerwen leads 30-5
Michael van Gerwen has already beaten Simon Whitlock twice in 2018, making it 11 straight wins against the Wizard.
Whitlock has reacted well to Thursday nights again and is in contention for the top four as long as he maintains scoring power which should ensure he stays in the match but his doubles can be his Achilles heel under pressure.
MVG generally has a lacklustre leg but now phase two has kicked in will want to motor away and secure his place to the o2 albeit being all but there according to odds compilers.
Michael Smith v Rob Cross
- H2H: Cross leads 6-1
Bully Boy was beaten in their first meeting this campaign back on Night Five and Cross is firing on all cylinders with a very steady approach.
Smith should not be complacent after whitewashing Barney and then winning a Tour event last Saturday and is playing some of the darts we all know he is capable of. Cross has won six of his last seven in this competition and may be able to punish Smith if he goes out of rhythm .
Raymond van Barneveld v Peter Wright
- H2H: Barney leads 11-8
This is always a difficult fixture to comment on when players have had to toe the oche at the top of the show.
It was three weeks ago where Wright suffered a drubbing 7-1 in a forgettable game for Wright.
This game could either see a finale finish or it drags its heels and although the total maximums line is set at 5.5 I’d rather leave this game alone.