Tungsten action returns Saturday in the form of the Bet Victor World Matchplay from the Winter Gardens in Blackpool. and Craig Wilburn looks to value in the outright market.
Saturday 16th – Sunday 24th July 2016
PDC WORLD MATCHPLAY – Winter Gardens, Blackpool
Widely regarded as the biggest tournament outside the World Championship, the Matchplay sees the top 16 ranked players in the PDC Order of Merit compete alongside 16 qualifiers from the PDC Pro Tour.
Last year saw Michael van Gerwen cruise to his maiden Matchplay title defeating James Wade in the final. MvG looked the likely winner throughout the tournament, the only scare coming from Ian White who led 6 legs to 1 in his quarter final against the Dutch gurner.
The long format of this tournament means that shocks are less likely to occur, indeed the history books show that the title has only been won by four different players since 2000 – Phil Taylor x 13, Colin Lloyd, James Wade and Michael van Gerwen x 1.
Looking at the 2016 tournament there are two players who take my attention. The first being reigning World Champion Gary Anderson who is a best priced 5/1 (BetVictor). Ranked the number two player Anderson has been in fine form over the past two months winning the Dubai, Auckland and Tokyo Masters. Anderson will battle the runner-up of the 2014 BDO Worlds, Alan ‘Chuck’ Norris in the first round. Norris has shown flashes of his ability since jumping to the PDC but I struggle to see him posing too much trouble. Looking further into the bottom half of the tournament, the most likely route for Anderson will be Jenkins > M Smith / Klaasen > Taylor / Wade. There are Some potentially tough ties within the route but given his ability and current form I strongly fancy Anderson to go all the way.
The other player of interest is Peter Wright who is priced at a juicy 25/1 with Coral. Wright has emerged as a real force over the last two years but has repeatedly fallen at the final hurdle when trying to win a major televised tournament. Maybe it’s the success of Portugal in the Euros, but I’m working on the conclusion that if you repeatedly get yourself deep into tournaments then eventually Lady Luck will reward you. Wright is drawn in the opposing half of the draw to Anderson and will likely face the following route to the final Cullen > White > Lewis > MVG. Again another tough route but Wright has beaten all of these opponents in recent history.
TIP: 1pt on Peter Wright to win tournament (26.00 at Coral)
TIP: 3pts on Gary Anderson to win tournament (6.00 at BetVictor)