The quarter-finals of the PDC 2012 World Championship are here, and we've got some shocks in the fold, as well as some expected names. Of course, the expected name not there is Phil Taylor, but neither is his conqueror Dave Chisnall, who was knocked in by Andy Hamilton in a sensational match last night. Hamilton is joined by another surprise package, Kim Huybrechts, seeds 2-5, Adrian Lewis, James Wade, Gary Anderson and Simon Whitlock, as well as "The Bull" Terry Jenkins and former World Champion John Part.
Some great action last night, and we got back on track with a solid performance, taking us to 26-28 and with a profit of +2.08 units. So, the profit is still there, and I think we got just a bit unlucky with the number of maximums in the Chisnall/Hamilton match, as if Chisnall had taken at least 1 set, the line would have been smashed. Still, if my auntie had balls, she'd be my uncle, as the old saying goes. And on that bombshell, let's get onto the tips!
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Andy Hamilton (17) versus Kim Huybrechts.
Andy Hamilton announced his return to form over the past 12 days, with three outstanding performances, in which he averaged over 95 in each match. It's safe to say that whatever problems Hamilton had over the past 18 months or so now look to be well and truly behind him. He went into his match against Dave Chisnall last night as a bit of an underdog, but won 4-0, proving the doubters wrong. He was unflappable until the very last few darts of the match, and even then he got through unscathed. His doubling has been solid, but it's his scoring which has been phenomenal - he outscored one of the best 180 scorers in the game last night, and was rarely troubled. It's been the same in his other two matches.
Kim Huybrechts put in perhaps the performance of the night. He defeated one of the tournament favourites, Paul Nicholson, with consummate ease 4-1. His average was a solid 94.59, and he doubled well. It wasn't even that Nicholson played poorly, it's that Huybrechts took his chances and didn't let Nicholson in. He'll have to do it all over again tonight, over a longer format, but I'm sure he's not scared of Andy Hamilton.
The bookies have Hamilton a reasonably short price here to win, and I can see why; he's played consistently solid darts and only looks to be getting stronger as time goes on. However, his opponent has nothing to lose, which makes him dangerous. The bookies rate Hamilton winning 5-2 is the safest bet, and the total number of sets line is set at 7.5. I can see The Hammer winning this, but I don't think he's going to have it all his own way, so we're going to have a dabble on the total sets, as I think Huybrechts can take a few sets off the man from Stoke.
Over 7.5 sets in the Andy Hamilton versus Kim Huybrechts match: 10/11 @ 888.com.
Recommend: 2 units.
James Wade (3) versus John Part (27).
While I mentioned Andy Hamilton was getting stronger as the tournament went on, the same can be said for James Wade. He's dropped 1 set all tournament and that was in the first round, where he wasn't that impressive. But he's just picked up his game more and more, timing his run to the title perfectly. And, as I said before, the draw has, again, been kind to him. But them's the breaks, and he's made the most of them.
John Part has surprised a few people, not least me, with his performances to get to the quarter-finals of the PDC 2012 World Championship. He's knocked out some quality players to get here and has never looked like defeat was an option in any of his matches. While his scoring hasn't been setting the world on fire, he's been solid, and that's all you can ask for. He's been here before, he knows what he has to do and James Wade won't scare him in the slightest.
The outcome here looks confirmed before a dart has been thrown, as James Wade just seemed destined for the semi-finals as soon as the draw was made. That's not to say John Part is without his chances, as he has overcome the odds a couple of times to be here, taking the notable scalp of the in-form Kevin Painter in the previous round. Wade to take this comfortably is what the bookies think and I can't blame them. However, the winner market isn't where I want to look. Both men haven't been firing on all cylinders when it comes to 180s - both have 8 over 3 matches and the line is 12.5, which could be a bit high, especially if the match becomes a cakewalk for Wade (or maybe even Part!). I see a chance for us here, so we've got to take it.
Under 12.5 180s in the James Wade versus John Part match: 4/6 @ Paddy Power.
Recommend: 2.5 units.
Gary Anderson (4) versus Simon Whitlock (5).
You know, I was hoping to see this in the final. Gary Anderson has been warming up nicely for this, and he finally came to the boil last night, demolishing Colin Lloyd 4-1 with an average of just a shade over 100. He's hit 29 maximums in three matches, and he's even managed a decent-sized checkout. There's no denying that his scoring has saved him in his first two matches, but it was a complete performance last night, and he'll be hoping it continues into his first REAL challenge.
Simon Whitlock has looked at ease in the PDC World Championship... until last night. He blew a 3-0 lead, only to beat Michael van Gerwen 4-3 in an absolutely classic encounter. Like Gary Anderson, Whitlock's strength has been his scoring, and the fact he hasn't had a checkout over 125 speaks volumes about where the faults may lie. The only worry here is Whitlock's foot injury, and over the best of 9 sets, his foot is going to get sore. If his match against Michael van Gerwen was any indication, longer matches are going to do him no favours.
Anderson is around 1/2 to win this, which seems a bit short for me. Sure, I can see him winning, but everything will have to click for him for it to be value. His doubling has been was almost his downfall in the first two matches of the tournament, but maybe it is coming together now. Naturally, where I'm going to look, though, is the 180s market and the line is considerably higher than that of the previous match - 19.5. I think this is attainable, as both men are averaging around 10 a match, and we're now into an even longer format. It's an interesting line, as I did think somewhere around 22, so we'll take the plunge.
Over 19.5 180s in the Simon Whitlock versus Gary Anderson match: 10/11 @ Paddy Power.
Recommend: 1.5 units.
Adrian Lewis (2) versus Terry Jenkins (10).
Last match of the night and it's going to be an interesting one. Adrian Lewis has went about his business in pretty unspectacular form. He's been hitting some big checkouts, but his usual consitency on the maximums isn't there, trailing behind Anderson, Whitlock and Hamilton in the counts. However, he's playing well, and his 4-0 win over Wayne Jones showed he was hungry. His unbelievable doubling helped him to an average of 95.94, so his scoring was solid, just not as amazing as it can be. He was also fortunate that Jones didn't turn up for most of the match, so even when he switched off, he was still able to win the set, and then the match.
Terry Jenkins has left me dumbfounded with how he's played. He may have got a bit fortunate due to Co Stompe's injury, but consistently high averages, including over 102 in his third round match against Justin Pipe, have signalled that Jenkins might finally be ready to step it up. He's played unbelievably well to get this far and he'll fancy his chances of beating Lewis, as his doubling, which is usually a sticking point, has been good, which is the main thing for Jenkins.
I can see this match going all the way. Both men are playing well, they're playing consistently good darts and they know each other's games inside out. For me, Jenkins looks a steal at 2/1, especially when you consider that most other players would have been frustrated by Pipe's throwing style, but Jenkins sucked it up and put in the best average of the third round. Out of the remaining players, Jenkins has the second highest tournament average, so there is proof he's playing some of the best darts of his career.
Terry Jenkins to beat Adrian Lewis: 2/1 @ Paddy Power.
Recommend: 1.5 units.
And that's all your free darts betting tips for 2011. We're back on New Year's Day for an evening session, when the two semi-finals will be played. Then it's the PDC 2012 World Championship Final on Monday 2nd and we'll be hoping a new champion is crowned!
Until then, remember our good friends that are offering £50 of free bets to their new customers. Don't forget to head over to 888.com.