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BDO 2014 World Championship Day Eight Premium Picks.
A crazy night of darts last night. We saw Martin Adams lose to Jan Dekker – Adams was never at the races, but what was more embarrassing was Tony Green’s commentary. We can only assume that Green done his dough on Wolfie. And then we saw the match of the round. James Wilson and Alan Norris had a match that will go down in Lakeside history, with both men averaging in the very high 90s, and both men were well over 100 at one point. It was a classic, and I think the best man won, as Norris wasn’t missing a double. So, after yesterday, we’re now 19-17 with a profit of +5.81 units.
Two semi-finals this afternoon, and we start with Stephen Bunting and Robbie Green – the battle of the BDO big guns. They’re the big hitters, as well as big men, and they’re played absolutely fantastic darts to get here. And then it’s the ‘wildcard’ semi-final, with Alan Norris taking on Jan Dekker, the match that not many would have predicted last week.
Stephen Bunting vs Robbie Green.
This is the first match I’ve genuinely been excited about all week. This is the match we’ve all been hoping for in the semi-finals, as it’s two of the biggest names in the BDO, the No.1 seed taking on the No.4 seed, the way the draw was meant to pan out. No shocks, and both men have been playing extremely solid darts. Bunting’s form peaked in Round Two with an average of 100.65, and he did look a little off in his quarter-final, losing the first two sets before beating Rick Hofstra 5-2 with an average of 90.87, his lowest of the week. But Bunting has been in great form, and he’ll be confident of beating Green. Robbie Green has had much of the same form as Stephen Bunting, although he’s been extremely consistent. He’s gone 94, 91, 92 in his averages, and has found his range on the 180s. He’s been a model of consistency all week, and has never really been troubled, although Tony Eccles did push him a little in the quarter-finals before Green came through 5-2. I think it’s going to be a tight one, but I’ve been impressed with Green’s consistency. Bunting looked a little off against Rick Hoftra, and if he does that against Green, he might not get back into the match. The recent head-to-head is 1-1, and Green lost 6-5 to Bunting in this last encounter. While many think Bunting is destined for the title, it may just be that the pressure is getting to him. The pressure is off Green, especially with him now knowing he can’t go to the PDC (even though he was definitely going to jump) now that the BDO have moved the goalposts. So, no pressure on the classy underdog here, and that might be what helps to get him over the line in a tight one.
Over 9.5 sets in Bunting vs Green match Best price 5/4 (Victor Chandler)
Recommend: 3 units.
Robbie Green to beat Stephen Bunting Best price 5/2 (Victor Chandler)
Recommend: 2 units.
Alan Norris vs Jan Dekker
This is the semi-final few would have predicted. Alan Norris has been playing fantastic darts – scoring 180 after 180 and hasn’t averaged under 93 this tournament. He’s shown consistency and he’s also shown bottle, which is what he lacked in the past. After last night, he came right into second-favourite, and it’s not hard to see why. He’s going to score a ton of 180s, and if he doubles like he did last night, he’s going to be hard to beat. Jan Dekker put in his best performance of the week in seeing off Martin Adams. He finally got his average over 90, putting in a 91.42, a whole 6 points better than his previous. But he’s going to have to find yet another gear – and I don’t think he has it. Last night was the best I’ve seen Dekker play on TV in quite some time, and I think he’s done all he can. If Norris’ form continues this afternoon, he could dispose of Dekker very, very quickly. Norris to make his first World Championship Final, and to do it in style.
Alan Norris -2.5 sets to beat Jan Dekker Best price Evens (Boylesports)
Recommend: 2 units.
That’s all for the Day Eight of the 2014 BDO World Championship. I’ll be back tomorrow with the last day of Premium Picks.