AS we draw ever closer to judgement night, the bookies took a beating last Thursday with all the favourites winning outright. One particular bookie, which remains unnamed stated they had taken a kicking.
This week sees five more matches as the table unfolds and phase two officially begins for some players racing for a top four spot.
Fixtures: Player named on the left will throw first
Suljovic Vs Anderson – Suljovic leads 4-3
The prices go with the likelihood of punters backing Anderson who has been given around a 60% chance of winning the game. Mensur is BIG at 4/1 with the draw a tad bigger at 9/2.
Mensur has been one of Anderson's bogey opponents in recent times despite the small sample of times they have played.
Suljovic despite his impressive stats with finishing and averaging has not paid dividends as he hangs over being eliminated at the first hurdle with likely candidate Gerwyn Price. There is a bet, which has taken my eye and will likely be pushed in to odds on before Thursday. Anderson will be well backed by most and I can see why, as he put on a no nonsense performance last week and is doing enough to stay in touch.
For Anderson backers, combining most maximum pays evens. Now at best 8/13 for the win with Betfair will not be objected from this quarter. However when you get a coin toss price of winning the game and hitting most maximums, then this is surely worth a punt? Mensur in the last two weeks has failed to hit more than one maximum in each of his games. Anderson has hit eight and with the gentle quickening his pace up will suit the flying scotsman as we kick off the night.
Also to support this, both have similar averages just shy of the 100 mark, but Anderson has hit the most maximums, with Suljovic hitting the fewest with just ten.
Smith Vs Price – Smith leads 9-4 (Price won last two)
Smith suffered a second defeat in three weeks last week albeit at the hands of MVG. Michael is sitting in second place in the standings and is around the 5/6 mark with Paddy Power to end phase two and make the o2 playoffs in May. If you fancied Price to turn his form around he is 250/1 with the same firm to go from last place to fourth overall. This is not inconceivable, but very unlikely.
If Gerwyn needs a lift before this tie, he has won the last two games. Michael can reaffirm his position in second although Rob Cross could overtake Bullyboy if he fails to win the match.
If I was Gerwyn Price, where would my pressure be? Knowing you are almost certainly relegated so playing with freedom? If Price loses he will almost certainly be down and think he will be taking on this pressure of survival as admittedly Gerwyn does not give up without a battle and the game to go eleven legs is best priced with Glenn Woodage at Bwin and Sportingbet.at 8/13 compared to the miserable 1/2 with sponsors unibet.
Barneveld Vs Gerwen – Gerwen leads 33-19
Barneveld can be a thorn in the plan of backers on Thursday with the five time world champion given a good handicap at 5/6 not to lose more than 7-4 for the safer punter with Betbright. The same firm with Betfred gives even money on the game seeing more than ten legs.
The Racing Post seems like Barney is a good call not to lose and some places will quote around 5/2 that it happens.
Gurney Vs Cross – Cross leads 2-0
Gurney’s birthday last Thursday provided him with the treat of earning a victory which may just be enough to stave off relegation. Gurney’s weekend did not go to plan being edged out in a 6-4 defeat to Meulenkamp where Superchin got chinned with a lowly 85 average and not a single registered maximum.
Rob Cross stormed to an impressive 7-1 over doomed Gerwyn Price and never prolonged the game during the eight legs played.
Backers of Gurney should get 6/4 on the Irishman winning the game but I am not so sure.
With almost identical averages throughout the event, Cross is short at 5/11 with Sportingbet to reign supremacy here and is 17/20 to pass the 99.50 average line with the same firm.
Whitlock Vs Wright – Wright leads 10-7
Out of all the games initially priced Wright opened the market around 6/4 after a dismal display last week. Fast forward 72 hours and he is edged out in the final of the opening European Tour to MVG, where his stats were pretty much his A-game.
This has been enough for odds compilers to rebase their price and with this the penultimate week before judgement night is a must win. Not discounting Whitlock had a good run and ended with the second best checkout conversion of the weekend despite a measly 1/5 conversion in a 6-1 loss to MVG in the quarter final.
I wouldn’t put anyone off Whitlock’s price, however the valuation of evens for Whitlock to win or draw has not been met.
Whatever Wright did last weekend was encouraging and a coin toss price to find out if this can continue is worth the risk on this occasion.