Well, not the greatest of weeks last week. The highlight of last week was obviously Simon Whitlock proving he's going to be one to avoid at short prices until he's well and truly settled into the PDC. A total enigma so far and you have to wonder how much of it is mental at this moment in time.
Still, it's duly noted about Whitlock and we'll use the information to further our betting strategies as we go through the year. So, without further ado, let's get on to tonight's tips.
Before I forget, because of all the amazing sport that's going on right now (Formula 1 starting, the close of the football season, Cheltenham Festival), Blue Square are offering a £10 free bet to all new accounts that make a deposit of £10 or more. Just click through the banner below and you'll have a few quid more to start betting with tonight.
James Wade Vs Ronnie Baxter:
The first match of the night sees the man who's had a shocking start to the Premier League, James Wade, take on the surprise package of the league so far, Ronnie Baxter. Needless to say, I amongst others thought Baxter would be the whipping boy of the league. He hadn't played in the league for quite a few years and his return to form wasn't really that great, considering the fluctuations in PDC rankings. However, he's shown me up and I'm sure he's shown a few other people up in turning over Mervyn King and Simon Whitlock.
And that's a good thing, not a bad thing. You see, because of Baxter's form and the shocking form of Wade, we're getting some nice prices about a contest that, at the start of the league, would have seen 1/4 Wade, 6/1 Baxter.
However, we're taking on Ronnie again this week. Yes, James Wade is at the bottom of the table with only one point and Baxter is third with 5 points, but if you look at last week, Wade averaged over 98 against one of the form players on the circuit, Adrian Lewis. Wade also had his chances to win, having a 7-4 lead over Lewis. Wade also put in three 100+ checkouts and started to look like he was back to his best. Baxter averaged around 97.5 against Simon Whitlock last week, but crucially, he was given his chances by the Aussie's inconsistent scoring. Yes, he'll still get the odd 41 from Wade, but not as many as he was getting from Whitlock. Baxter got his chances and took them well, even if he did almost come unstuck towards the end. However, I see Wade coming back to form and beating Baxter emphatically, as he'll feel he has a point to prove now. I can also see some big checkouts, as both men are capable of them and have shown some classy out shots over the past two weeks.
James Wade -2.5 legs against Ronnie Baxter: Evens @ Stan James.
Recommend: 2 units @ Evens.
Highest Checkout in Wade Vs Baxter match over 121.5: 11/10 @ Stan James.
Recommend: 2 units @ 11/10.
Phil Taylor Vs Mervyn King:
What to say that I don't say every week? Phil Taylor should win this and win it comfortably. King's lacklustre performance over the past couple of weeks won't trouble "The Power", even if King did beat him in the semi-finals of this competition last year. Taylor has been playing well within himself this year and is capable of finding his groove easily enough. King should take more legs than Barney and Wade off of Taylor, but it should be enough of a cakewalk to render this match a "no bet" option.
Recommend: No bet.
Terry Jenkins Vs Raymond van Barneveld:
Definitely a mouthwatering match on paper. Jenkins has surpassed all expectations so far in the Premier League, while Barney has been nothing short of abysmal most of the time. However, like Wade, this means we're going to start getting the prices that make backing Barney worthwhile and tonight bears witness to that.
Jenkins averaged aroud 94.5 last week when losing to Mervyn King, while Barney averaged just under 90 in losing to Phil Taylor. If anything, it's been Barney's doubling that has been letting him down and it cost him a few times against Taylor. Jenkins, on the other hand, is finding a groove and staying in it. He's not playing amazing darts, he's not playing awful darts, he's just grinding out results and the fact he's drawn 50% of his matches is testament to this. However, Barney isn't going to play as poorly as he has ben doing for long and I want to make sure I get the odds-against prices when I can, as once he gets his head back into the game, he'll be a lot shorter in the rematch.
Raymond van Barneveld to beat Terry Jenkins: 11/8 @ Blue Square. And remember, if you click through the link to sign up to Blue Square, youll get an extra £10 into your account and I can't think of a better place to put that £10 than on Barney.
Recommend: 1 unit @ 11/8.
Adrian Lewis Vs Simon Whitlock:
Tonight's main event is a bit of a strange choice, considering Taylor Vs King is 1st versus 2nd, while this is 5th versus 6th. Anyway, Lewis has been a bit of a revelation on his Premier League comeback. Yes, he's only won one match, but he's been playing at a phenomenal level, putting in great averages during the match. Yes, like the Lewis of old, he's still prone to a lapse in concentration now and again, but he's playing well enough to avoid it scuppering his chances all the time.
Simon Whitlock, on the other hand, has been shocking at times. He's also been impressive...well, against Barney he was. His other 3 matches have been somewhat shocking. But he proved against Barney that his checking out ability is perhaps the best feature of his game. But is that going to be good enough against Lewis? Well, he'll no doubt get his chances, but if he starts to miss the trebles again, like we've seen he's capable of, Lewis' high scoring will give himt he cushion he needs to see out the legs, especially against the throw. All signs, in my eyes, point to a Lewis win and I'll be honest, I had priced up Lewis slightly shorter than the bookies have him, especially after taking down the latest floor tournament on Sunday, so he's showing signs of coming back into top form just at the right time. I'll definitely be taking some of the tasty price on offer!
Adrian Lewis to beat Simon Whitlock: 5/4 @ Blue Square.
Recommend: 2.5 units @ 5/4.
Highest checkout in Lewis Vs Whitlock match over 121.5: 5/6 @ Blue Square.
Recommend: 1.5 units @ 5/6.
So, that's our tips for week for of the Premier League.
Oh, in case you were wonder, as a lot of people seem to be, one of tonight's walk-on girls will be the lovely Nicola Cowell. You can become a fan of hers on Facebook at the following group: Nicola Cowell.
And if you thought Nicola was good, it's not as good as a free £25 from Stan James! Just click on the link below, sign up and fllow the instructions to claim your free £25. Simple!
As you can see, Stan James have got some fair prices in the ante-post market for the PDC World Championships and it's always worthwhile getting some of the bigger prices on your side before the big tournaments start and the bookie become wise to who's performing the best. As it stands, Jamie Caven has been playing unbelievably well in the floor tournaments and his price should come in a bit if he can finally find his form in the televised tournaments.
So, enjoy the darts, whether you're going to the MEN, or if you're watching it on Sky Sports. Happy betting!