As we move deeper into this season’s PDC Premier League darts tournament, we’ll soon be at the stage where we say goodbye to the weakest players in the section. After week 8, the table is really starting to take shape and for those at the bottom of the table, it’s the time where every match is a ‘must win’.
For week 9, we move across to Belfast and a round of crucial matches but for those safe at the top of the ladder, the focus starts to turn to the play offs and the ultimate prize.
As always, we’ll start by rounding up the outright win market and after yet another victory, Michael Van Gerwen remains secure at the top of the betting and you can now claim the Dutchman at best odds of 8/15 with Sun Bets.
Rob Cross is also in a rich vein of form and after a fifth straight victory, the World Champion is the second favourite at a top price of 9/2 with bet365 and Winner Sports. Gary Anderson is fifth in the table but after beating Simon Whitlock last week, the Flying Scotsman is our third favourite at best odds of 8/1 with Boylesports while Michael Smith now moves to fourth favourite at 16/1 with Coral.
Raymond Van Barneveld demolished Peter Wright last week and Barney can now be backed at a top price of 22/1 with Coral and Winner Sports while Wright is the biggest mover. A beaten finalist last year, there was some support for Snakebite at the start of the tournament but following a third straight defeat by the same 7-1 scoreline, the Scot has now drifted to a best of 40/1 with Sun Bets for the outright win.
Peter Wright is now second from bottom of the table after a dreadful start to the campaign and we now continue with throwers who have plenty of work to do to make sure they are through to the next phase. Those players include Simon Whitlock who has drifted after a strong start to the season and the Wizard can now be found at best odds of 66/1 with bet365 and MarathonBet in the outright betting.
Daryl Gurney won last week and can also be backed at 66/1 with most bookmakers but elsewhere, he’s available at a top price of 80/1 with 10Bet and Sport Pesa. Mensur Suljovic is third from bottom, on the same points tally as Peter Wright, and he is available at a best of 200/1 with Sun Bets and Coral and then we come to Gerwyn Price, bottom of the league and most likely to be eliminated on ‘Judgement Night’. Price can be backed by brave punters at best odds of 2000/1 with SportingBet.
That’s the latest state of play with the outright betting so let’s now take a look at our schedule for week 9.
First Up to the Oche
Some darts bettors will see potential in the first game of the evening as Mensur Suljovic takes on Gary Anderson. Austrian Suljovic had a dreadful start to the 2018 Premier League and has dropped back after a brief revival so, he is the outsider here at best odds of 4/1 with Unibet and BetFred. The draw is also available at a top price of 4/1 with Betway and MarathonBet and that all leaves Anderson as hot favourite at 10/17 with Sport Pesa.
While the odds go with the better thrower, Anderson’s form is shaky right now and there may just be potential for an upset.
Following on we have Michael Smith versus Gerwyn Price and a game between two men who have experienced contrasting fortunes this season. Smith keeps picking up wins and has only lost to the two best players in the tournament while Price is without a victory and has just two points by virtue of two drawn matches.
It’s therefore a very predictable market for this one with Smith the clear favourite at best odds of 14/19 with Sport Pesa and Price out at a best of 3/1 with Sky Bet and Unibet. Finishing off is the draw at 4/1 with bet365 but this is one where the bookies look to have called correctly.
Our two throwers from the Netherlands come along next as Raymond Van Barneveld takes on his compatriot Michael Van Gerwen. Barney has enjoyed a good overall start to 2018 and is fourth in the Premier League table right now so may attract some interest at best odds of 13/2 with Boylesports.
Needless to say, MVG is the hot favourite for this one at a top price of 4/11 with MarathonBet and Sport Pesa while the draw drops in at a best of 11/2 with bet365 and BetBright. It certainly could be closer than the market suggests so we’ll look at the correct score betting shortly but with Van Gerwen establishing a lead at the top of the table, we expect the favourite to take the points.
Next up is Daryl Gurney versus Rob Cross in another match where the bookies have identified a clear favourite. PDC World Champion Cross is currently listed at 11/18 with Sport Pesa while Gurney is out at a top price of 4/1 with Sky Bet. The draw is only slightly further back at best odds of 41/10 with 188Bet and Cross’ run of five straight wins in this tournament makes him the obvious choice.
The last match of the evening sees Peter Wright make an attempt to drag himself away from the elimination places as he takes on Simon Whitlock. Ordinarily, Wright would carry a short, odds on price for this match but after three straight 7-1 defeats, the Scot remains favourite but at an odds against figure of 11/10 with MarathonBet.
A win for Wizard Whitlock is available at 11/5 with Ladbrokes while the draw finishes off the night at a best of 15/4 with bet365 and BetBright. Clearly there is going to be some value in this match but where will it land?
We lost out by backing Wright last week but are tempted to get behind Snakebite again. He’s been in a dismal run of form, it’s true, but surely he will soon find the quality that got him to the final in 2017. He doesn’t become a bad player overnight and with the prospect of elimination hanging over him, we think it’s time for Wright to pick up points once again.
Elsewhere, we think that the only potential upset could come in the match between Suljovic and Anderson at the top of the bill. The Austrian has been wildly inconsistent while the Scot has just been subdued so we’ll opt for an Anderson win by a close(ish) 7-4 scoreline which is on offer at excellent best odds of 7/1 with SkyBet.
We usually offer three tips so will finish with another side bet on a week where the result betting is low in terms of value. Michael Smith is a short option to beat Gerwyn Price but you can improve on his win odds by taking Bully Boy to hit the most 180s which is at an improved 9/10 with Sun Bets.
- Peter Wright to beat Simon Whitlock at 11/10 with MarathonBet
- Gary Anderson to beat Mensur Suljovic 7-4 at 7/1 with SkyBet
- Michael Smith to hit the Most 180s against Gerwyn Price at 9/10 with Sun Bets