Grand Slam of Darts Day Five Premium Picks
Back to a bit of normality last night. Well, I say a bit of normality, but we did see the worst performance on a PDC stage since Warren French took on Akihiro Nagakawa in 2009 at the Ally Pally. Ted Hankey was just not with it, and although the crowd were chanting that he was drunk, there are reports that he turned up with a swollen eye, but no-one could have predicted that kind of performance from The Count. Aside from that, we got on the right side of Scott Waites, and hopefully a couple of you took my optional extra of Waites 5-2 at 20/1. Thanks to that result, I’ll be getting myself something extremely nice for Christmas, and I hope you will too. We were also on Arron Monk -1.5 legs, and he didn’t disappoint. Mark Webster, however, did, against Co Stompe. You would have thought with everything to play for, Webster would have been at his best. C’est la vie! James Hubbard’s scoring let him AND us down, while Mervyn King didn’t disappoint against James Wade, and I still can’t get over the price we got. And Dean Winstanley finally done us a good turn, and came in at 13/8, which I’m more than happy with.
So, that puts us at 18-14 with a profit of +13.68 units after four days of the Grand Slam of Darts.
There’s one night of first round action left, and it’s going to be great, if last night was anything to go by. We start with a dead rubber, with Gary Anderson taking on Adrian Lewis. Lewis is out, so he’s only playing for pride. Then we get to see if Brendan Dolan can dish out the same punishment to Barrie Bates that Paul Nicholson did. Anything less than 5-1 or 5-0 to Dolan and he’s sure to be disappointed. Then we get an all-BDO clash, with Wesley Harms taking on Martin Phillips, followed by Raymond van Barneveld against Wayne Jones. Tony O’Shea and John Part square off in a must-win game for both men. Winner goes through, loser goes home. Simple as that. Andy Hamilton and Paul Nicholson are up next, and then it’s Wes Newton against Terry Jenkins. Finally, we have the BDO World Champion, Christian Kist, facing Mark Walsh. So it’s definitely a big night of darts, with a lot of variables going on throughout the night.
Betfair have the best prices on most markets, and darts is one of them, and they’re doing more for the sport than ever before – a lot of their markets have more liquidity than ever and no is a great time to sign up there if you haven’t done so already. Plus, what’s better than trading darts matches in-play? Sign up now, get a free £20 bet and up to £1,000 cashback:
Adrian Lewis Vs Gary Anderson.
I mentioned before that this is a dead rubber. Gary Anderson has won both his games, Adrian Lewis has lost them both, and even if he was to win 5-0, he’d still be out and Gary Anderson would still be through. However, Anderson will be wanting to win this to ensure he tops the group, while Lewis might just want to win it to avoid looking like a chump.
While I don’t normally like betting on dead rubbers, Anderson needs to win to avoid the winner of Group F. If he loses, he could end up second in his group, which could end up giving him a trickier second round tie. So winning is a must for Anderson. Lewis has nothing to play for, and he’s not the greatest when it comes to the mental side of the game, so it could be a case of going through the motions. I certainly don’t think he’s any value at around the same price as Anderson.
I think we’ve got an Anderson win here, and it doesn’t matter if it’s 5-4 or 5-0, so the handicap is definitely not an option, but the outright is. The bookies have it close, I don’t. There’s value to be had in the Scotsman.
Gary Anderson to beat Adrian Lewis: 5/6 @ 888sport.
Recommend: 3 units.
Brendan Dolan Vs Barrie Bates.
While not “strictly” a dead rubber, Barrie Bates is out, and Brendan Dolan needs to win to stand any chance of playing in the second round. On paper, it should be a formality for Dolan. He’s averaged 88.20 and 85.85 in his first two matches, while Bates has managed 78.19 and 73.54. So the Northern Irishman has been putting in 10 points more on the averages than the Welshman.
So Dolan needs a big win, and Barrie Bates hasn’t been playing like a man that has any chance of stopping that. Losing 5-0 to Paul Nicholson sums that up nicely. The problem is that the bookies have finally got wise about this, and now have the handicap at -2.5 legs, and even though Dolan needs the win, it’s Brendan Dolan playing, not Phil Taylor, so realiability is an issue. That being said, Dolan should go better than Bates on the maximums, and 4/5 on him to score the most in the match looks a tempting proposition, given Bates has managed one this tournament, and his scoring wouldn’t suggest a man brimming with confidence on the treble 20.
Brendan Dolan to score more 180s than Barrie Bates: 4/5 @ 888sport.
Recommend: 1.5 units.
Wesley Harms Vs Martin Phillips.
If the results go the right way, Martin Phillips can still qualify for the second round. First, he has to beat Wesley Harms 5-2 or better, than hope Wes Newton wins by the same scoreline, or better. That’s a lot of hoping, but it’s still possible. So Group G is not over yet, not by a long shot.
Both men disappointed in their second group games, with Wesley Harms’ 81.08 average against Wes Newton the lowest average in the group. It was followed closely by Martin Phillips’ 82.41 against Terry Jenkins. That being said, Harms’ brilliant 5-2 win over Terry Jenkins, with a 101.79 average is one of the highlights of the 2012 Grand Slam of Darts, so it would be foolish to write the Dutchman off just yet.
This is actually a rematch from the first round of the 2012 BDO World Championship, which Harms won 3-1, in a scrappy encounter. I think he’s capable of doing it again, because as soon as he gets 3 legs on the board, Phillips is out, and I can see Harms getting at least 3 legs, which would no doubt cause Phillips to suffer a bit mentally. The fact is, one of these men has shown great form in this tournament, while the other has just been distinctly average. I also think that Harms will be wanting to go out and blow Phillips away to help try and secure a place in the second round. 5-0 would guarantee him a place, and although I can’t see it, he might not be far off to try and put as much daylight between himself and Terry Jenkins as possible, so the -1.5 legs on the handicap is a good place to go hunting.
Wesley Harms -1.5 legs to beat Martin Phillips: 11/10 @ 888sport.
Recommend: 2 units.
Raymond van Barneveld Vs Wayne Jones.
Barney wins, he’s through. Wayne Jones wins, he might be through depending on the scoreline and the Walsh/Kist result later on. That being said, it looks more than likely that Jones is out, as only a 5-0 win and a win for Christian Kist would put him through. One leg for Barney, and it’s all over for the local lad. So Barney looks good here, right? Well, yes. The form line through Mark Walsh would suggest Barney has the beating of Jones. Barney beat Walsh 5-0, with Walsh averaging 85.00. Jones lost 5-4 to Walsh, who averaged 87.4. So if this was a handicap, you’d have Barney somewhere around a 3-4 leg favourite, surely? The bookies have the line at -1.5. I can’t see why it’s not -2.5 like Dolan/Bates, but there you go.
When you also factor in Barney’s performance in his first match, with an average of 96.35, and the fact he looked like he was simply going through the motions against Christian Kist (until the last leg, when both men came alive), I can’t see anything but a convincing Barneveld win.
Raymond van Barneveld -1.5 legs to beat Wayne Jones: 8/11 @ 888sport.
Recommend: 2.5 units.
John Part Vs Tony O’Shea
And now it’s the one I’m most excited about. This is a match that decides who qualifies from the group. It’s winner takes all, and it’s two stalwarts of the game, and two men that have surpassed expectations in their first two matches.
John Part had been written off by most, but he’s shown that he can still play good darts by beating Adrian Lewis and pushing Gary Anderson all the way. While his averages might not have been unbelievable, he’s shown great grit and determination to sit second in Group E. As for Tony O’Shea, he’s unlucky not to be sitting top of the group, after missing darts to beat Gary Anderson. That being said, he played around the same standard as he did against Adrian Lewis, averaging 90.71 in his first match, and 89.96 in his second. So he’s consistent, if nothing else. And, to be honest, it’s his consistency that could prove crucial here. Part’s averages have been 85.5 and then 78.66. So he’s coming in around 8 points worse off, which could be crucial in O’Shea getting to the double first. Both men have gone well here in the past, but it’s O’Shea’s consistency that impresses me. They’ve met once before in competition, with O’Shea winning back in 2000. That was 12 years ago, so we won’t worry about that! I say stick with The Silverback, because consistency is the key, and if he can maintain an average around, Part will not be able to play how he did against Adrian Lewis, or he’ll be going home.
Tony O’Shea to beat John Part: 4/6 @ 888sport.
Recommend: 3 units.
Andy Hamilton Vs Paul Nicholson.
It’s tight at the top of Group F. In theory any two of three can win it, and any two of three can go through (technically any two from four, but unless Barrie Bates won 5-0 earlier, it’s any two from three). And in this match we have two men who can’t be separated on tournament averages – Hamilton on 88.78, Nicholson on 88.80 (so yes, they can be separated, but by a fraction of a point).
So is it going to be close? Probably. However, there’s something bugging me, much in the way the Taylor/Waites match did last night. You see, a 5-2 win for Nicholson is good for both men. So even if Brendan Dolan wins 5-0, Hamilton would go through due to winning their group match. Again, it’s not for me to say that there’s shenanigans afoot, but a mutually beneficial result is certainly feasible. Plus, Nicholson HAS won 5 out of their 6 matches in competition, so it wouldn’t be a shock to see him win. It’s going to be tight, yes, but I think there’s a good chance we’ll see both men in the second round, which would mean Paul Nicholson winning.
Paul Nicholson to beat Andy Hamilton: Evens @
Recommend: 2 units.
Wes Newton Vs Terry Jekins.
This could be a huge match for both men, or if Martin Phillips has managed to beat Wesley Harms it might just be an exhibition win for Terry Jenkins so as to secure qualification. However, we’ve got Wesley Harms down as a convincing winner, so let’s plan ahead and use that scenario.
A Harms win of 5-0 or 5-1 means Jenkins has to win 5-2 or better to eliminate Wes Newton. A 5-2 win for Harms and a 5-2 win for Jenkins and we get the same scenario that was possible in Group D of a three-way shootout. Harms winning 5-3 means 5-2 or better for Jenkins to eliminate Harms (or possibly Newton depending on the scoreline), and Harms winning 5-4 means Jenkins has to win 5-3 or better. Confused? Don’t be!
Like the Hamilton/Nicholson match, these men are close on the tournament averages. Jenkins’ average of 91.76 just outdoes Newton’s 91.62. So it’s close, yes. Jenkins’ highest checkout is 78, Newton’s is 76. Maximums? Jenkins is on 6, Newton is on 4. There is very little between them. Oh, and the head-to-head? 11-10 in Newton’s favour, including two 6-5 wins in the Champions League Darts on October 25th.
Looking at the overall performances of both men, though, and I’ve been more impressed with Jenkins. The Bull played well in defeat against Wesley Harms, and did a professional job against Martin Phillips, beating him 5-2, just like Newton. So while the form line through Wesley Harms would suggest a comfortable Newton win, you have to take into account the fact that Harms’ average was 20 points better against Jenkins. Jenkins NEEDS to win, Newton just needs to not lose by too many legs, so the sensible option is to take the man who will be hungrier for the win. It just so happens he’s also ahead on averages, highest checkout and total 180s.
Terry Jenkins to beat Wes Newton: Evens @ 888sport.
Recommend: 1 unit.
Christian Kist Vs Mark Walsh.
Last and by no means least we have the BDO World Champion, Christian Kist, taking on (in Dean Winstanley’s words) “the legend that is” Mark Walsh. By now, Kist will know if he needs to win to guarantee his place in the second round, depending on the Barney/Jones match. If Jones has won, Kist is through. If Barney has won, Kist needs to avoid a 5-0 defeat. So, if Barney has won, only a 5-0 win can send Mark Walsh through, and Special Brew won’t be too pleased about having to win that way.
This is pretty much academic, isn’t it? If Barney HAS lost, there’s nothing to Kist to worry about, everything for Walsh to play for, and Walsh might be a good thing. If Barney HAS won, as long as Christian Kist gets one leg, there’s nothing for the youngster to worry about.
In short, it depends on what has happened earlier as to the permutations here, and there’s no value to be had on this much speculating, as the markets have Kist in as favourite, which is right, and the lines are all set fairly. Just leave it for tonight, and we’ll start afresh tomorrow.
Recommend: No bet.
And so ends the final round of group matches. By the end of the session the second round line-up will be complete, and hopefully our bankroll will swollen up even more to do some proper damage to the bookies in the knockout stages. Enjoy the darts, and I’ll be back tomorrow with more Premium Picks.