Co Stompe v Mark Webster:
R1 – Stompe bt Steve Maish 3-1
R2 – Stompe bt Mervyn King 4-2
R3 - Stompe bt Mark Dudbridge 4-2
R1 – Webster beat Mark Walsh 3-2
R2 – Webster beat Peter Manley 4-2
R3 -Webster bt Kirk Shepherd 4-1
Opening match sees a really intriguing match between the former BDO champ and the former BDO journeyman. Stompe has been a revelation again this week and is totally unrecognisable from the player in the BDO. Heavy scoring and good finishing and he will be very hopeful of a spot in the semis. Webby on the other hand has gotten stronger as the week has gone on and this reminds us a lot of the week that he won the Lakeside. It's very, very close on paper, but we think Stompe might just be the more consistent over the long course, as Webby has seemed to be in and out, but does look incredibly strong, but he's just slightly too short.
Co Stompe to beat Mark Webster: Evens @ Stan James.
Recommend: 1.5 units @ Evens.
James Wade v Simon Whitlock:
R1 – Wade bt Steve Brown 3-1
R2 – Wade bt Michael van Gerwen 4-2
R3 - Wade bt Andy Hamilton 4-3
R1 – Whitlock bt Colin Osborne 3-1
R2 – Whitlock bt Wayne Jones 4-1
R3 -Whitlock bt Terry Jenkins 4-2
Second game of the afternoon sees a battle between Wade and Whitlock which could be a lengthy affair. Wade has been far from his best form and this venue doesnt seem to bring out the best in him especially from a 180 perspective. However, he does have the ability to really find a clutch finish when needed and that's a great quality to have.Whitlock has been sensational all week, though and has consistently finished well and scored heavily when given the chance. The question is will his nerve hold if he has a chance to win probably the biggest match of his career? We can't pick a winner here and the prices look priced spot on. The only bet we like is a bet on overs on the checkouts again as both are capable. However, having been burned twice before with Whitlock we will be having a small bet this time.
Highest checkout in Wade Vs Whitlock match over 132.5: 10/11 @ Stan James.
Recommend: 1 unit @ 10/11.
Raymond van Barneveld v Ronnie Baxter:
R1 – Van Barneveld bt Warren Parry 3-0
R2 – Van Barneveld bt Brendan Dolan 4-0
R3 - Van Barneveld bt Kevin Painter 4-1
R1 – Baxter bt Haruki Muramatsu 3-0
R2 – Baxter bt Gary Anderson 4-0
R3 - Baxter bt Colin Lloyd 4-1
We don't know how Barney keeps getting away it. He seems unable to scrape over a 95 average on TV these days and just looks a shadow of the player he once was. It seems all his opponents are overawed by his reputation, though, as they are beaten before they even step on stage. Baxter is playing really well again this week and has continued his strong floor form of the last 12 months. He had darts to beat Barney here last year and we think if he stays on a steady average then he will win.
Ronnie Baxter to beat Raymond van Barneveld: 6/4 @ Stan James. 6/4 @ Blue Square. 6/4 @ Ladbrokes.
Recommendation: 1 unit @ 6/4
Phil Taylor v Adrian Lewis:
R1 – Taylor bt Colin Monk 3-0
R2 – Taylor bt Steve Hine 4-0
R3 - Taylor bt Robert Thornton 4-1
R1 – Lewis bt Aodhagan O’Neil 3-0
R2 – Lewis bt Wes Newton 4-2
R3 - Lewis bt Kevin McDine 4-0
Tie of the round/year/decade/all time if you believe the Sky hyperbole and it should be a corker providing Lewis brings his best. We all know that Taylor is going to average 100+ over a long match and Lewis knows that, too. the question is can he maintain his strong form versus the champ? Between then they have the six highest averages of the tournament to date and if that goes on then this will be an all time classic. We're happy to sit and hope that it is without a bet as we think if Taylor gets in front early it could be a rout. If not though then we could see a cracker, as Phil likes to say.
Recommendation: No Bet
Summary: 2 main bets on Baxter and Stompe and hopeful of a high check in the Wade match if the gods allow us some luck.
Happy new year and, more importantly, happy betting!
Bets made: 21
Profit: +2.15 units.