The tournament is now coming to a conclusion and as always we feel it's harder to find worthwhile bets as it goes along towards the final. Yesterday afternoon probably provided one of the finest games we've ever witnessed, so we're hopeful that one or both can come close to that tonight.
Phil Taylor v Mark Webster:
QF - Taylor bt Adrian Lewis 5-0
Webster bt Stompe 5-3
R1 - Colin Monk 3-0 102.48 2 maxes
R2 - Steve Hine 4-0 103.28 6 maxes
R3 - Robert Thornton 4-1 104.26 6 maxes
24 180's (62 legs) - 1/2.6 legs
R1 - Mark Walsh 3-2 90.75 2 maxes
R2 - Peter Manley 4-2 89.52 0 maxes
R3 - Kirk Shepherd 4-1 97.41 4 maxes
11 180's (91 legs) - 1/8.27 legs
First game of the evening sees a clash between the greatest player there's ever likely to be and the former BDO champ. We thought Taylor was sensational last night versus Lewis as he knew he had to up his game and he did it in spectacular fashion. At one point he won 11 straight legs going out in 11 and 12 darts as a matter of course. If he plays like that again then who can stop him? We think this has been a great week for Webster as he has got progressively more comfortable on stage and is finally showing the form that won him a BDO title. It also will give him a big boost in the rankings which can only aid his development. To compete here he has to add about 5 points to his average though and check out at 50% and the problem is doing that while Taylor stands behind you. We personally can only see a comfy Taylor victory but the h'cap of -4.5 at odds on doesnt do much for us. As such, we will sit back and probably witness another masterclass.
Recommendation: No Bet
Ray Barneveld v Simon Whitlock:
QF - Barney bt Ronnie Baxter 5-0
Whitlock bt James Wade 5-3
R1 - Warren Parry 3-0 92.65 3 maxes
R2 - Brendan Dolan 4-0 89.95 4 maxes
R3 - Kevin Painter 4-1 89.14 2 maxes
13 180's (64 legs) - 1/4.9 legs
R1 - Colin Osborne 3-1 101.02 6 maxes
R2 - Wayne Jones 4-0 99.24 5 maxes
R3 - Terry Jenkins 4-2 100.6 8 maxes
34 180's (85 legs) - 1/2.5 legs
Second match of the evening sees the stuttering Barneveld take on the big aussie Whitlock in what could prove to be a pivotal match in both players' careers. Barney has got to this stage not playing his best by any means, but he is here and its not his fault if his opponents have all underperformed against him. He just seems to be struggling for consistency as he is hitting nowhere near the same number of maxes and isn't doubling as well as he can, either. The question here is, can he up it when needed? Whitlock has been magnificent in his march to the semi finals though and it seems a combination of new darts, security in finding a sponsor and binning his wife has led to a massive form surge. He has everything in the respect of scoring heavily, doubling brilliantly and taking out high shots when needed. He performed superbly versus Wade, but he literally broke his opponent's heart when checking out 170 and 150 back to back and Wade never won another leg from that point on. Thats a mark of real class for us and we think if he plays to his usual form he will win. Prices look a bit skinny to us, though as we was hoping for Evens, so that is a disappointment. However, there is a worthwhile bet if the stats show us anything. On the max bets we had Whitlock about 4/7 or 8/15 given how he hits them and how bad Barney has been on them. A carrot has been tempted, though, by Ladbrokes, as they have him at 4/6 which looks generous, given he is hitting 2 to every 1 of Barney's this week.
Whitlock to score more 180s than Van Barneveld: 4/6 @ Ladbrokes.
Recommendation: 3 units @ 4/6.
Summary: Really hopeful of 2 high quality matches as the tournament deserves it given the standard that has been produced. Hopefully Whitlock can win the match bet on maxes though and keep us in a nice profit for the week.
Bets made: 24
Profit: +0.56 units.