Well, we're into week five of the PDC Premier League Darts season and it's safe to say this is the biggest week so far. Yes, we had the opening week of Adrian Lewis, the new world champion, taking on the greatest darts player ever to have lived, Phil Taylor, but now we're getting Phil Taylor taking on the in form player in the world, Gary Anderson. The crowd in Manchester are in for a real treat and the supporting line-up might not be too bad, either!
Last week we went 2-1, taking us to 4-8, with a loss of -10 units. Again, keep the faith and we'll be in the green in no time!
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Now, let's get the Premier League tips for Manchester underway.
Mark Webster vs Terry Jenkins.
The Mark Webster we saw at the start of the Premier League was back in some style last week. His 8-1 win over the world chamipon, Adrian Lewis was spectacular, but his 110 average was even more impressive. He missed two darts at doubles in the entire match and his performance was right out of the top drawer.
Terry Jenkins, on the other hand, seems to be struggling. Jenkins' 8-1 defeat to Simon Whitlock was worrying, as although his average was 92.39, he just didn't get many chances at a double and his scoring is just not what it was. Add in that Whitlock wasn't in any real form, the result is a shocker.
Looking at the Premier League season as a whole, Jenkins is looking more and more out of place, while Webster just seems to be growing in confidence. Exeter was his redemption for Belfast and I'm sure he can continue that form against the weakening Terry Jenkins.
Recommend: 4 units.
Phil Taylor versus Gary Anderson.
This is the big one. I can't wait and I'm sure you can't wait. Phil Taylor bounced back from a shocking opening week to start posting averages over 100 and looked like he was starting to get back to some kind of form that would propel him to the top of the league. Taylor's 8-3 over Raymond van Barneveld might have been a bit flattering, but he deserved the win and his average 95.65, coupled with his strong finishing shows that.
Gary Anderson has been unstoppable in the Premier League so far and last week's 8-3 win with a 96 average over James Wade just shows the kind of form the Scotsman is in. He's yet to taste defeat in the PDC Premier League and he's no doubt hoping that his run won't end tonight.
I think this will be as close as everyone thinks. it cuold go all the way and I'm sure we'll get 14 legs, but will it be a draw? Well, if I knew, I'd tip that with supreme confidence. Both men will be wanting to play their best darts and we could end up with one of the finest matches the Premier league has ever seen if they can manage it.
The line for total legs is 12.5 and I'm sure we'll get the 13, probably the 14, so we have to go with that.
Recommend: 3.5 units.
Raymond van Barneveld versus James Wade.
Is this the battle of the fading stars? James Wade has yet to sparkle in the four weeks of the Premier League, while Raymond van Barneveld had started to show some kind of form, but was put back into his place by Phil Taylor. That being said, his performance wasn't all bad and was certainly better than Wade's. Barney's average last week of 92.32 is marginally better than Wade's 90.87.
Both men struggled with their doubling last week and it's been a feature of both players' Premier League seasons. The man who can land their doubles consistently will be the one to take it.
Just looking at the last few weeks, Barney has been showing form and the 8-3 scoreline didn't tell the whole story against Phil Taylor. Barney had his chances and if he had taken them it might have finished differently. Wade, on the other hand, never looking like winning against Gary Anderson and that's why we need to side with the Dutchman at the prices.
Recommend: 2 units.
Simon Whitlock versus Adrian Lewis.
The two Premier League enigmas, Adrian Lewis and Simon Whitlock come face-to-face for the first time this Premier League season. Both men have been inconsistent this year, neither man has looked in the kind of form that will propel them to this title and this is why it could be the hardest match of the night to call.
Lewis has been hammering in high average after high average and last week his average of 103.26 would have been enoguh to take care of most players, but he came across Mark Webster who put in 110, which was probably sickening for the world champion. Lewis just seems to be strruggling with his doubles at times and it was most evident in his 8-6 defeat to Raymond van Barneveld, where he had doubles to close the gap, which he missed. However, his 170 proved he can take the big checkouts when needed.
Simon Whitlock has the 50% strike rate in the Premier league, but he's been far from convincing. His average of 99.30 and the 8-1 scoreline was impressive, but can he reproduce it aganist smoeone in a bit better form than Terry Jenkins? Well, possibly. Whitlock still hasn't shown the top form he's capable of, but he's been doing enough. If Lewis starts putting in the big scores, doing enuogh might not be enoguh to drag him to victory.
The prices reflect how close this match will be and I can't split them either. but the draw is not the greatest price ever, which is a bit frustrating. However, we have two men who can fire in highcheckouts and the line of 122.5 is enticing for us and that's where we'll be heading.
Recommend: 3 units.
And that's the tips for Manchester's evening of Premier League Darts. I hope you enjoy it and, as ever, happy betting!