World Series of Darts 2018: Odds and Betting Preview

world series dartsThe darts bandwagon rolls on and this week it’s destination Austria for the final of the World Series. This isn’t classed as a Major Tournament on the PDC circuit but it’s one that has attracted one of the bigger fields in recent times and it could be a competitive three days.

The action gets underway this Friday, November 2nd, so let’s take a glimpse at the history of this competition before looking at the runners and riders.

History and Format

The World Series first hit the darting schedules in 2013 and in those early days, the winner was decided based on a set of events through the calendar. Since 2015, the competition has involved a final tournament which includes qualifiers from those earlier contests.

In terms of previous winners, Michael Van Gerwen has won all three of the events since that switch in 2015. That record sends out an ominous warning to the rest of the field but at least we have one of the strongest entries of recent weeks. It’s also worth noting that Peter Wright got to the final in each of its first two years and the Scot pushed MVG close on both occasions.

In terms of the format, 24 players take part with the top eight seeds enjoying an automatic bye into the second round. The first and second rounds are the best of 11 legs and in the quarter finals we then have a jump to the best of 19. From there, the semis are a best of 21 affair and that’s the same basis for the final which will take place on Sunday November 4th.

Now we know all about the World Series of Darts, we’ll move straight to the result betting where a familiar face sits right at the top.

Out in Front

Michael Van Gerwen
Michael Van Gerwen

Van Gerwen beat Gary Anderson in the final of this event twelve months ago and the two men lead the way at the top of the betting for 2018. As the number one seed and the only man to have ever won this event, MVG is an obvious favourite for the outright win and you can pick the Dutchman up at 4/5 with William Hill and MarathonBet.

Gary Anderson follows at a top price of 6/1 with William Hill and MarathonBet and then we get to two-time World Series runner up Peter Wright at a best of 8/1 with William Hill and BetFred. Those are the top three and beyond those names, the market starts to drift.

Chasing Throwers

The chasing pack is led this week by Rob Cross who can be picked up at best odds of 12/1 with BetFred. The current PDC World Champion has yet to hit the heights that saw him lift the big one at the start of the year and while he went deeper into the European Championships than many expected, we’re going to keep clear.

A further gap follows to Mensur Suljovic who looks far more tempting at a top price of 20/1 – also with BetFred. The Austrian will play in front of a supportive home crowd and unlike most of his opponents, he’s remained active during a busy time on tour.

Other names to look at in this section include Michael Smith at a best of 20/1 with 10Bet and SportPesa while Dave Chisnall’s game has improved in recent weeks and he can be backed at a top price of 25/1 with William Hill and MarathonBet.

Outside Punts

Daryl Gurney
Daryl Gurney

It’s been an interesting few months for James Wade: The abrasive left hander is a new dad and has spent some time away from the game to work on his action. After a number of strong showings, The Machine enjoyed overdue success last weekend and while his win price for the World Series has dropped, he still looks seriously tempting at best odds of 40/1 with BetFred.

Daryl Gurney can also be found at a top price of 40/1 with SportingBet while other names in this section include Simon Whitlock, who lost in the final to Wade on Sunday. The Wizard is also listed at a best of 40/1 with MarathonBet and SportingBet while punters can also consider the returning Raymond Van Barneveld at a top price of 50/1 with BetFred.

Recent winners on Tour, Ian White and Gerwyn Price can both be claimed at a best of 66/1 with MarathonBet and SportingBet respectively while Kyle Anderson at 100/1 with 10Bet and SportPesa may also attract some interest.

We’ve covered the main contenders plus some interesting outside punts but who is going to get over the line here?

Verdict

Recent tournaments have thrown up some surprise winners including James Wade and Ian White. We haven’t always seen the strongest fields for those events and with Gary Anderson back this week, we’re not expecting any similar shocks.

Van Gerwen wasn’t at his best last week but with three straight wins in this event, he’s the obvious favourite. By all means get behind MVG at that odds on price but we tend to avoid him at such short numbers and we intend to do so again. That leaves some Each Way value and it starts with the home favourite.

Mensur Suljovic is in the half of the draw that avoids Van Gerwen and recent form suggests he can provide the biggest threat to the Dutchman. He will need to overcome Gary Anderson along the way but the Flying Scotsman’s extended absence from the board makes him vulnerable this week.

Suljovic is an option for the win but the Each Way punt is safer in a tournament where Michael Van Gerwen has been completely dominant. We’ll also stay with the form thrower and get behind the impressive James Wade who looks relaxed and ready to compete at the very top once again.

Best Bets for World Series of Darts 2018: