It's the most wonderful time of the year, yet again. Forget Christmas, the PDC World Championship is the best thing about December. The big names of darts head to the Ally Pally after Phil Taylor's triumph at the Players Championship at the start of the month.
The PDC World Championship starts on Friday, which means there's only a couple of days left to get the bets on the outright market, and usually there's not much in the way of promotions that grab my attention, but Victor Chandler has a great offer on. If Phil Taylor wins the 2013 PDC World Championship, Victor Chandler will refund all bets on the outright market placed before the start of round two up to a maximum of £50.
So, keeping in mind that Phil Taylor is still the man to beat, as was evident at the Players Championship, it's a great promotion that makes having a punt on the outright market a great opportunity for a nice score in the New Year.
Like most PDC tournaments, I'll be offering both a free tip for each day of competition, as well as a Premium Tips service. For £10, you get access to the Premium Tips for the entire tournament.
You can sign up here: Darts Betting Tips Premium Picks.
The Premium Tips have been running for five tournaments and these have been the results so far:
Grand Slam of Darts: +23.35 units.
PDC World Grand Prix: +4.26 units.
PDC World Matchplay: +16.92 units.
PDC UK Open: +7.62 units.
PDC Premier League: -18.43 units.
The last four tournaments have been good for us, even though Robert Thornton and Michael van Gerwen and Raymond an Barneveld gave the bookies the results they wanted in the last two majors. And we're +33.72 units in front for the entire year. So for an investment of £50 so far this year, you'd be nicely in front of the bookies using the Premium Picks.
Remember, for £10 you get access to the Premium Picks here: Darts Betting Tips Premium Picks.
He's the obvious place to start, even if he's not the most fashionable player to be backing at the moment. This year, away from the floor tournaments, Taylor has won the Champions League Darts, the World Cup, Players Championship Finals, Premier League and the World Matchplay. So while not his most prolific year, it's easy to say that he's still head and shoulders above most of the competition. Taylor obviously loves the venue, and at around 2/1, it's a fairly big price for The Power to regain his World Championship. The draw's also been kind to him, as if it goes to seeding, he's got Wayne Jones in the second round, with the potential banana skin of Robert Thornton in the third round, IF the Scotsman can get past Magnus Caris and Paul Nicholson/Co Stompe.
Michael van Gerwen:
The man everyone wants to beat at the moment, and not too long ago you could get 66/1 for the young Dutchman to lift the 2013 World Championship title. Now, he's best price 5/1 to win his first World Championship, and many people out there are speculating that this is his time. He's certainly got lucky by ending up in the bottom half of the draw, away from Mr Taylor. In fact, the draw has been VERY kind to Van Gerwen as he gets the privilege of playing a qualifier in his first round match. There's no denying the World Grand Prix champion has had a great year, and if you got on at fancy prices, you'll be laughing. He's short enough, but if you want to take advantage of the great offer from Victor Chandler, it's where you should be placing your money:
I can't ignore Adrian Lewis when I go on about "The Contenders" simply because he's the defending champion. In fact, he's a two-time PDC World Champion, and he always comes into the tournament in stinking form, yet plays great darts and in January lifts the World Championship over his head. Do I think he can make it a three-peat? No. Could he? Of course, he's done it before. Lewis hasn't had a great 2012 when it comes to darts, but he is a new father, and maybe that will be the change to his mentality that he needs. Lewis has got a decent draw up to the quarter-finals, where he could end up facing Michael van Gerwen. If that happens, I can't see Lewis beating Van Gerwen. Of course, that match might not come about, and Lewis might end up getting a much easier run to the semis, or even the final. But I can't see it, and the 10s or 12s are probably just about right. However, he's in the right half of the draw to avoid Phil Taylor. Remember Victor Chandler's generous offer!
TV Tournament Winners
The winner of the UK Open, the conqueror of Phil Taylor... twice in televised competition and one of the resurgent players on the PDC ProTour. He's won floor tournaments, as well as the UK Open, and he's playing the kind of darts we saw him play in the BDO before he made the switch a few years ago. You can get around on 33/1 on Thornton winning the title, and looking at the draw he has, it could be a little on the short side. There's no denying he's in good form, though, but I'd be looking for someone with an easier draw in the first few rounds as a lively outsider.
Raymond van Barneveld:
The most emotional winner of a televised tournament in 2012, Raymond van Barneveld was a popular winner of the Grand Slam of Darts. It was a welcome return to form for the Dutchman, especially beating the in-form Michael van Gerwen in the final. Barney's been there and done that before when it comes to the PDC World Championship. But, he's got a shocking draw. Michael Smith in his first match is one of the tougher first round matches, then there's the potential of facing Gary Anderson in the third round, then Simon Whitlock or Dave Chisnall in the quarter-finals. 18/1 is the Dutchman's price, and you'll have earned every penny of it should be get through that half of the draw, as even if he managed to get through those matches, he might just end up with Phil Taylor in the semis, which isn't nice. If he gets through that, then it could be Michael van Gerwen of Adrian Lewis. Easy enough for Barney, right? Right? Still, there's far worse bets out there, as Barney's obviously coming back into a bit of form, and even if he makes it to the semi-finals and loses out to Taylor, if you get on with Victor Chandler, you can cheer Taylor on to victory and get your stake back!
Mervyn King/Dean Winstanley:
Yes, it's two players, but hear me out here. King is 50/1, Winstanley is 50/1-66/1 and they're in the plum section of the draw. The top seed in the draw is James Wade, and I think it's clear that The Machine is malfunctioning at the moment, so the players in that section of the draw will fancy their chances. They play each other in the first round, the winner than faces Stuart Kellett or Vincent van der Voort, with the Dutchman's health a huge question mark. After that, it's probably Steve Beaton or James Wade. Then it's the quarter-finals, and any of those seeds are there for the taking. We're going to get an unexpected semi-finalist from this quarter of the draw, and I think both of these men have the potential to go deep. Hedge your bets and take the value on both of them!
Again, you might think I've gone mental, but it's all down to the draw, and the fact Painter has had a solid year. The experience of the past 12 months has been vital in getting Painter back into a position where he feels like he deserves to be, and the confidence he has on the stage shows that. Sure, he's not playing flashy darts, but he's capable of beating most players with his solid darts. He's got Adrian Lewis as a potential third round opponent, and if Lewis isn't firing on all cylinders, as has been the case this season, Painter could be looking at a quarter-final with Michael van Gerwen. Painter has the game to stifle Van Gerwen's speed, so maybe the 100/1 shot starts to look a bit better. Don't forget, he's been in the final of the PDC World Championship before, and came so close to winning it. His game might have went off the rails since then, but he has shown he is playing good darts again, so I think the 100/1 is a nice bit of value. Remember, the value increases at Victor Chandler, because even if Painter doesn't win, as long as Phil Taylor wins, you don't lose. Perfect!
I'll be back with the Free Darts Betting Tip, as well as the Premium Picks for the first day of the 2013 PDC World Championship later in the week, so keep an eye out for them. And remember, make the most of Victor Chandler's great promotion.