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PDC 2014 World Championship Day Eight Premium Picks.
Finally, finally, finally, Round One is over and we’re now onto some decent matches. Last night was the last of the Round One games, and I was pleasantly surprised at the quality. Mensur Suljovic was unlucky not to beat Mark Webster, in what was an extremely entertaining match. Royden Lam put in a solid performance against Gino Vos, before losing to Wes Newton 3-1. James Wade flattered to deceive against Darren Webster, and Kevin Painter put in perhaps the performance of Round One with a 3-0 demolition of Tomas Seyler. Because of Suljovic’s failure to get over the line, it cost us a winning night. So we’re now 12-12 with profit of +3.5 units for the Premium Picks.
Tonight, we have three of the PDC’s power scorers taking to the oche in what appears to be decidedly one-sided contests. Peter Wright takes on the qualifier Per Lauresen, then it’s Raymond van Barneveld against Jamie Caven, while Phil Taylor rounds out the evening against the up-and-coming Michael Smith.
Peter Wright Vs Per Lauresen.
Most people will have had Terry Jenkins Vs Peter Wright in this match, but Laursen impressed in his Prelim Match and also his Round One match. He played solid darts, that were not particularly flashy. He did what he needed and got over the line. Peter Wright didn’t bring the razzle-dazzle we all expected, but he was a comfortable winner in Round One, doing what he needed to bring on the possible showdown against The Power in Round Three. For me, Wright is a threat for the World Championship, and he’s going to have too much for Laursen. I don’t think we’re going to get a lot of legs, so I can’t see the 180s line of 8.5 coming close. Wright should get a few, but with around 16 legs, I can’t see a glut of them.
Under 8.5 180s in Wright Vs Laursen match Best price Evens (Paddy Power)
Recommend: 2 units.
Raymond van Barneveld Vs Jamie Caven.
Jamie Caven was one of the poorer first round performers, while Raymond van Barneveld was one of the stand-outs. Barney averaged around the 98 mark, while Caven his 87 in a match where Jelle Klaasen was never at the races. I think we’re going to see another one-sided contest, as Barney has been looking sharp on TV recently, he’s power scoring and he’s just not keeping his focus. But Caven shouldn’t pressure him, and I can only see 4-1 or 4-0 for Barney here. The handicap looks great value.
Raymond van Barneveld -2.5 sets to beat Jamie Caven Best price 6/5.
Recommend: 2 units.
Phil Taylor Vs Michael Smith.
We’re going to hear all about how Phil Taylor almost lost to Rob Szabo, but I want to reiterate that I don’t think he was really in any danger. Taylor is a bit of a slower starter, and he should start to come good, especially as he has something to prove. He averaged 96.68, while Michael Smith averaged 79.69 in what was a shocking performance against Hashimoto, the qualifier. Smith is a strong 180 hitter, but he’s likely to precede it with 26 and follow it with a 44. His lack of consistency is going to play into Taylor’s handed, and on first round performances and averages, Taylor has far too much in the tank. Smith has one chance – no chance. But Taylor is odds-on to win 4-0, the handicap is that way, too. But what’s interesting is the 180 market. Smith is a strong 180 hitter, but only hit 1 in Round One. Taylor hit 5, yet he’s the same price as Smith to score the most. I can see Phil going out to prove a point here.
Phil Taylor to score most 180s Vs Michael Smith Best price 6/5.
Recommend: 2.5 units.
That’s all for Day Eight of the Premium Picks. Round Two continues tomorrow, and I’ll be back with more tips then.