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Grand Slam of Darts Day Nine Premium Picks
The end of near, the 2012 Grand Slam of Darts is coming to an end, and we’ve only got three matches left to bet on. We’ve seen everything but a 9-darter. We’ve had drama, great darts, beautiul women and, most importantly, some great wins.
Dean Winstanley got us off to a great start yesterday, with his well deserved win over Kevin Painter. In his debut season with the PDC, Winstanley has played decent darts, but this week he’s moved into a gear we haven’t seen for almost two years. That hunger got us a nice winner, and it kept up thanks to Andy Hamilton punishing John Part. The result was what I expected, and it was nice to be rewarded for the confidence. So the afternoon session was a great one. And then we couldn’t get a break in the evening. Barney and Christian Kist didn’t come close with the highest checkout, with their best being 111. Then Scott Waites tried valiantly to stop the juggernaut that is Michael van Gerwen, but it wasn’t to be.
So, that puts us at 30-21 with a profit of 23.75 units after eight days of the Grand Slam of Darts.
Two sessions today, with the semi-finals this afternoon, and the final is played in the evening. The afternoon session starts off with Andy Hamilton taking on Raymond van Barneveld, in what’s sure to be a tight, entertaining match. And then it’s Dean Winstanley’s turn to try and stop Michael van Gerwen. It’s a different look for a big semi-final line-up, but it’s got an entertaining look about it. The final will start at 7pm tonight, and one of those men will end up taking home a cheque for £100,000. Not bad for a week’s work.
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Andy Hamilton Vs Raymond van Barneveld.
Two BDO stalwarts who have played great darts this week face off in the first semi-final of the day.
Andy Hamilton has had a great run so far, and is one of two men in the semi-finals not to have lost a match. He’s beaten Barrie Bates, Brendan Dolan, Paul Nicholson, Gary Anderson and John Part on his way to the semi-finals, and he’s averaged 93.80 along the way. He’s hit 13 maximums and a highest checkout of 152. So he’s playing well, he’s full of confidence and his 95.37 average against John Part was extremely solid.
Raymond van Barneveld is going through a resurgence of late. He’s been playing well on the floor and in European Tour events, so now it’s good to see that form coming back onto the TV. Unlike Hamilton, Barney lost one of his group games, but he got revenge of Christian Kist in the quarter-finals with a comprehensive win last night. His tournament average is 96.15, but his 100.57 last night was on the back of a 104.56 against Wesley Harms, so the longer format is suiting the Dutchman. Barney’s performance last night included 12 maximums, a 111 finish and 47% on his doubles.
This is going to be a great one. Both men are confident, and both men will fancy their chances of getting to the final. Hamilton has been here before, while Barney is no stranger to big finals. The really interesting stat here is that Andy Hamilton hasn’t beaten Barney since their first meeting back in 2006. Barney has won the last 16 encounters, including their last meeting on TV, which was at the UK Open – Barney winning 9-5. I don’t see why that’s going to change right now; Barney is playing great darts, he’s averaging over 100 in his two longer format matches and he just seems to have Hamilton’s number. However, there’s no great value in backing the Dutchman here. We’re going to look elsewhere, and the first place is the players to score the most 180s. Barney hit 12 yesterday, which is 1 short of Hamilton’s total for the tournament. Hamilton score 7 against John Part, and he can up that, but so can Barney. We also need to look at the highest checkout market. Both men are capable of big ones, Hamilton putting in a 133 yesterday, and he has a high of 152 for the tournament. While Barney only managed a 111 yesterday, he has a tournament high of 156, which is more than enough to beat the line of 136.5.
Raymond van Barneveld to score more 180s than Andy Hamilton: 4/5 @ 888sport.
Recommend: 2 units.
Highest checkout in Raymond van Barneveld Vs Andy Hamilton match over 136.5: 5/6 @ 888sport.
Recommend: 2 units.
Michael van Gerwen Vs Dean Winstanley.
It’s a David versus Goliath battle, with the in-form player in darts taking on a man who’s trying to make a name for himself in the PDC after getting to the final of the BDO World Championship in 2010.
Michael van Gerwen hasn’t disappointed throughout this tournament. He’s kept up his performance from the World Grand Prix, and he’s knocked out Phil Taylor and Scott Waites to get to this semi-final. Needless to say, he’s a short order for this match thanks to his 100.09 tournament average and 20 maximums. He’s shown a maturity in his game that everyone expected to happen as soon as he moved to the PDC. While it’s been some time coming, he’s matured to a level that’s unbelievable, and doesn’t show sign of stopping. His 106.63 average against Scott Waites included TWO 170 checkouts, as well as 9 maximums. His finishing was a bit astray at times, so the fact his average was so high just shows how powerful his scoring actually is. The 2/9 for the Dutchman is how the bookies see the match going.
Dean Winstanley has shown a fighting spirit that he seemed to have been missing during his first year with the PDC. He’s not set the ProTour alight as he would have hoped, but the Grand Slam of Darts may finally be a turning point, especially after his gritty performance last night. His 16-12 win over Kevin Painter wasn’t pretty, with a 90.45 average and only 1 maximum, but he found his range on the doubles, hitting 40%, which is where Winstanley needs to tighten his game up. His tournament average is 93.01, which, while not great, is still of a high enough standard to get him to the semi-final of a big event. That being said, he’s going to have to up his game this afternoon. 4/1 for Winstanley shows what the bookies make of his chances.
Well, the head-to-head is useless, as they’ve never faced each other because of Winstanley’s recent defection to the PDC, but to keep it simple, Van Gerwen looks a good thing here looking at his run to the semi-finals. While Winstanley has played solid darts, Van Gerwen crushed Scott Waites, who was averaging 98.04, almost 8 points more than Winstanley managed in his quarter-final. I’m not saying that Winstanley doesn’t stand a chance, but the 4/1 about him is the right price in my opinion. So we’re not going to be looking at the outright market for our bet. But what we are going to keep in mind is the fact that Van Gerwen hit two 170 finishes in his semi-final. The line, like the previous match, is 136.5, and Dutchman looks good value to do it himself. But Winstanley has a highest checkout for the tournament of 142, which would be good enough to get us across the line, too. I think the line is low here, so we’ll take that as our last bet of the semi-finals.
Highest checkout in Michael van Gerwen Vs Dean Winstanley match over 136.5: 5/6 @ 888sport.
Recommend: 3 units.
And that’s it for the semi-finals. There’s one match left, and if there’s any value to be had, I’ll be sure to send it through to you.