The Premier League darts roadshow rolls into Cardiff in Wales for Week 12. As ever, there are some scintillating match ups. The one that catches the eye most is Rob Cross v MVG, and that promises to be a real barnstormer. TXODDS darting doyen James Punt has looked at all four matches in great detail. You can check out his Premier League Darts preview and tips for week 12 below…
Premier League Darts Preview: Mensur Suljovic vs. Daryl Gurney
A big match between two players tied on 12 points and on the cusp of a play-off place. Daryl Gurney could do with a comprehensive win to improve his leg difference. That may well be the deciding factor to see who goes to London for finals night.
Gurney is in better form and has a H2H record of 8-5 with Suljovic. He has won six of his last ten matches with five of those seeing 100+ averages. Suljovic has won just one of his last five matches and four of his last ten. His scoring has largely been poor with three of those ten matches seeing averages under 90 and an overall average of 93. That isn’t good enough at this level and this looks like a great opportunity for Gurney to pick up two valuable points.
Gurney won their 1st phase match 7-3 and another fairly comfortable win is on the cards.
2 points Daryl Gurney to win @ 2.30 with Betfred
Premier League Preview: Rob Cross vs. Michael van Gerwen
A top of the table clash and it may well decide who tops the table in five weeks’ time and collect the £25000 bonus for doing so. MVG believes that is his rightful position and he will be very motivated to win this match. He has a very good record over Rob Cross, winning 13 of the previous 16 matches. He is in very good form with eight wins and a draw from his last ten matches.
Rob Cross is also playing some very good stuff and says that he is playing better than he was when winning the world championship. The results tend to disagree with that and he has lost four of his last ten matches. That isn’t poor form but it’s not great either.
Cross hasn’t been well recently, suffering with a fever last week and he decided to withdraw from the player’s championship events last weekend in order to rest and recover. His form last month was very good and after losing the final of the UK Open he had a run of performances which saw him average over 100 in eleven of twelve matches. That is peak Rob Cross.
Cross Gone Off The Boil
In his last eight matches he has only had two ton plus averages. While his form hasn’t collapsed it has dropped off from his run of very strong form of last month. That may be down to his illness taking the edge off his performance and hopefully he will have fully recovered after a week off.
A fully fit Rob Cross usually loses to MVG and if there are still any after effects from his illness still in his system then that moves things further in MVG’s favour. Van Gerwen won three of their four matches in the last 12 months with Cross’ sole win was in a World Series event and it must be said that MVG wasn’t that impressive on the World Series tour last year.
MVG Looks Overpriced
MVG won their first phase match 7-2 but Cross was poor that night, averaging just 93. He is usually much better than that so we should get a closer match but the same outcome has to be expected.
Van Gerwen can be backed at 1.57 which does seem a touch generous. Perhaps those odds would be about right if Cross was in the form he showed last month but he does seem to have dropped off that a little. He will likely need to average north of a 100 average and be strong on his doubles to live with Van Gerwen and the Dutchman rarely has an off night.
0.5 point Van Gerwen to win 8-5 @ 9.00 with Bet365, Boylesports
Premier League Darts Preview: Michael Smith vs. Gerwyn Price
Finally a venue with friendly fans for Gerwen Price. That may not be good news for Michael Smith who will have the Welsh crowd behind his opponent at just the time when he desperately needs to win just to keep any realistic hopes of qualifying for finals night. Smith is bottom of the table on eight points and a leg difference of -11. His form is good however. He took a weekend off a couple of weeks ago which seems to have refreshed him. Bully Boy was in good form at the weekend reaching the final of PC 11 and the semi-final of PC12, losing both to James Wade. That is eleven wins from thirteen matches and he played very well until he faced Wade. His scoring then just went to bits and he does seem to have a mental block about playing James Wade.
Gerwen Price also played in the players championship events at the weekend. He lost in the first round of PC11 despite a 103 average. He reached the last 16 in PC12 before narrowly losing 5-6 to Danny Noppert again despite averaging 105. The Iceman isn’t quite playing as well or as consistently as he was in February when he won back to back players championship events, but his best form is not far away.
Smith has the better H2H record at 12-5 over Price. Their most recent meetings have been close affairs and this should be another one. The pressure is more on Smith as he cannot afford to lose. Also, Price will have the novelty of having the crowd on his side for once. This match does have the look of a draw about it.
1 point drawn match @ 5.00 with SpreadEx
Premier League Darts Preview: Peter Wright vs. James Wade
In terms of current form this is a total mismatch. James Wade won back to back player’s championship events at the weekend, to go with the one he won the weekend before. He has won fourteen matches in a row and in his last twenty three matches he has won twenty one with a draw and only one defeat. The second best player in the world on recent form? Arguably true. However his Premier League form shows a different picture.
Wade has won just one of his last six PL matches with three draws and two defeats. He managed a draw with Daryl Gurney last week despite Superchin averaging 104 and Wade just 90. That is what Wade can do, not score that well but still get something from a match. Even if it is just a point.
Snakebite Searching For Consistency
Peter Wright continues to confound with his unpredictable form. He played well against Rob Cross last week, averaging 100, but lost 5-8 as Cross was just that bit better. Wright then went to Barnsley for the players championship events and started well with two wins with averages of 103 and 107. Had he found his game? Settled on a set of darts for more than a day? No. He started playing poorly again, averaging in the low 90’s and struggling.
Wrights PL form is poor and he has no wins from his last six matches, three defeats and three draws. He has only won two matches from the eleven played so far.
So we have one player in top form on the floor but a little disappointing on the Premier League stage against another who is even worse on the PL stage and totally inconsistent on the floor. Wright cannot be easily dismissed. He can still turn it on and score big averages but predicting when and where is impossible to tell.
Their H2H form shows their last PL match was a draw and Wade winning both their other two matches in the last 12 months. However, at 11-9 and 6-4 they have been close affairs. Overall Wade has a 18-17 H2H record with Wright so there are no pointers from those stats except to hint that these two are usually very evenly matched.
Given Wades most recent form he must go off as the favourite but despite Wrights mixed form he can’t be written off as he might turn up with his ton plus game. It’s all about the odds of course and Wade looks a bigger price than expected. It is not a banker bet, Wright is too unpredictable, but Wade is taken to continue with his winning ways even if Wright plays well.
2 points James Wade to win @ 2.38 with Marathon Bet, William Hill