The Grand Slam of Darts is here, people. Roll up to see some of the BDO’s finest take on the cream of the PDC. You want to see Ted Hankey get riled up by drunken louts? Watch the Grand Slam of Darts! You want to see Phil Taylor wearing glasses playing darts? Watch the Grand Slam of Darts! This is a fun week of darts on ITV4 and it’s a rarity in darts these days to see not only this format, but to see some of the faces.
I love the tournament and it’s still in its infancy and shows signs of only getting stronger. If only the BDO could have a World Champion that wasn’t a bit of a fool and would come and defend his code’s honour against Phil Taylor.
I won’t be supplying tips for group winners, as there is little value and the variation because of the short format makes it a hard one to call and since there is no value, there’s no point in speculation. However, we’ve got the first round of matches starting on ITV4 at 6pm and that means we’ve got tips.
I want to mention the bookmakers that will give you some free money for depositing there. Is there anything better than free money? Well, more free money. So, use my tips along with these free sign-up offers and we'll keep the great run going!
First off, Betfair. If you've not got an account with Betfair, why not? More often than not, they have the best prices and, thanks to the ability to back or lay a selection, you can bet in-play with ease and also lay your bet back should you think the tide is about to turn for your player. It's where serious bettors bet and if you're serious about darts betting, you NEED an account here. Plus you get a free bet up to £25, which is always nice.
I want to introduce our friends at Paddy Power They’re big supporters of darts and they’ll give you a £10 bet when you sign up through Darts Betting Tips. They have great money-back specials on all sorts of markets and are perhaps the most fun bookmaker out there.
Victor Chandler as a well established name in sports betting and they really get behind the great sport of darts. They'll give you up to a £100 free sports bet, as well as casino chips is you sign up there. There's not a better offer available and I've taken advantage of this for tonight's tips, and I think you should too. Hey, if the tips win, great, but if, for some strange reason, they don't, you've lost nothing!
Boylesportsare another great bookmaker for darts. They have a huge variety of markets and they have a nice £20 deposit bonus. You deposit and bet £20, they match it. Simples!
Stan James are big supporters of darts. We find their markets to be amongst the best when it comes to darts betting, which is why we proudly support them. Plus, their £25 match bet is a fantastic offer, probably the best out there at the moment. So, why not sign up, deposit and have a nibble on our first tip of the night and Stan James will match it:
Seriously, if you don’t have accounts at any of these bookmakers, sign up, deposit and use your free bet to have a dabble on tonight’s tips. Now that that’s out of the way and you’ve got your free bets, let’s get the tips going.
Colin Osborne Vs Robert Thornton
What a miserable 12 months for Robert Thornton. He’s been plagued with injuries and inconsistent form. The fact he had to play a prelim match for the latest Players’ Championship tournament sums up just how stinking his form has been recently. Sure, he had a good run, but he’s been off our TV screens for a while now. Colin Osborne, on the other hand, has been consistent enough. He’s not setting the world alight, but he’s been playing steady darts and that’s all you really need.
However, Osborne’s price is a tad prohibitive over such a short format and the fact Thornton showed a slight return to form last weekend and Osborne has been known to put in the odd shocking match from time to time. Osborne is unbackable at 8/11, but there is a change the match could go on for a bit, so the leg betting interests me. The line is 7.5 and it’s tempting.
Osborne Vs Thornton over 7.5 legs: 4/6 @ Blue Square
Recommend: 1.5 units @ 4/6
Mervyn King Vs Stacy Bromberg:
Well, this, in theory, should be a cakewalk for Mervyn King, but just ask Vincent van der Voort about playing a woman at the Grand Slam of Darts. There’s no value to be had in King at 1/20 and I can’t see Bromberg troubling him at all, but even Barney couldn’t get a 5-0 win over a woman on the GSOD stage, so the 5-0 offers no value at 13/8 either. Just grab a beer and enjoy the match.
Recommend: No bet.
Tony O’Shea VS Vincent van der Voort:
Our first BDO vs PDC match up and it’s fan favourite Tony O’Shea taking on the fastest man in darts, Vincent van der Voort. This game looks tasty on paper, but van der Voort let us down badly at the World Matchplay and he’s not looked a shade of his old form for a while, citing various injuries. You wouldn’t be wanting to back an injured man against someone who has form in this tournament, which is why O’Shea looks a good bet against the struggling Dutchman, especially with his heavy scoring.
Recommend: 2.5 units @ 4/5
Gary Anderson Vs Mark Hylton:
Anderson is finding his form now and Mark Hylton is one of the ITV Wildcards for the Grand Slam of Darts. Needless to say, the bookies have this as lopsided as it seems. Yes, Anderson should win and win comfortably, but we’re not going to get rich backing him. Like Mervyn King’s match earlier in the night, grab a beer, sit back and enjoy seeing a face you won’t have seen before in Mark Hylton.
Recommend: No bet.
Simon Whitlock Vs Dave Chisnall:
The 2010 PDC World Championship runner-up takes on the 2010 BDO World Championship runner-up and it should have been an intriguing encounter, but Dave Chisnall’s form since the World Championships hasn’t been anything to write home about, while Whitlock has been going from strength to strength in the PDC ranks. Whitlock is around 2/5 to beat Chisnall and I fully expect to do so comfortably.
7.5 legs is the line and that’s probably about right. We won’t get rich backing the correct scores either, so just enjoy the wonderful Wizard of Oz doing what he does best: scoring heavily and putting in amazing checkouts.
Recommend: No bet.
James Wade Vs Justin Pipe:
I like Justin Pipe, I really do. He’s an up and coming player who has been putting together some solid result on the floor and has yet to get a chance on the big stage. Tonight is his big chance. Unfortunately it’s against a man who has found something like his old form in the middle of 2010 in James Wade. Sure, the short format favours underdogs like Pipe more, but Wade will be hungry to capitalise on a somewhat shaky Phil Taylor and will want to assert his authority from night one.
Again, I’m repeating myself, but just enjoy this match and enjoy a player in his pomp and another up and coming PDC star.
Recommend: No bet.
Wayne Jones Vs Mark Webster:
This is a fun match. A very fun match to watch and a very fun match to bet on. Both men are in good form on the floor and have been showing it a bit more on TV. The bookies have them very close, the form has them very close and I have them close on paper. This is what the Grand Slam of Darts is all about, pitting two men who are very close against each other over the best of nine legs. It’s thrilling darts. It could go either way, so the numbers of legs should be over the 7.5 line, which is where we’ll be betting.
Over 7.5 legs in Wayne Jones vs Mark Webster match: 4/6 @ Blue Square
Recommend: 1.5 units @ 4/6
Terry Jenkins Vs John Henderson:
Another BDO vs PDC encounter and this one is a well-established name against an unknown name. Terry Jenkins hasn’t exactly shown great form over the last 12 months, while John Henderson has been playing well enough on the BDO circuit and he belies his ranking just outside the top 32. Henderson is a very capable player and I believe he’ll push Terry Jenkins all the way. The bookies have managed to get quite wise to this, although the 2/1 is still a tasty price for Henderson.
John Henderson to beat Terry Jenkins: 2/1 @ nStan James
That wraps up the first night of the Grand Slam of Darts, live on ITV4. Some close contests and some seemingly one-sided affairs. Hopefully you’ll enjoy them and if you fancy betting on them in-running, which is my favourite way to bet, you seriously have to check out Betfair, where you can bet on every leg as they happen and you can bet according to the flow of the match. It’s the place where I bet, so if you want to try and take some of my money from me, head on over there and back my lays and lay the ones I’m backing!