The Premier League of Darts circus arrives at the Echo Arena in Liverpool for Round 3 on Thursday. Last week, in my preview of the Premier League of Darts (PLD) visit to Bournemouth, I successfully managed to predict 4 out of the 5 matches.
The only match that I missed out on was Lewis v Taylor – I felt that Lewis’s recent good form would have been good enough to edge it against an aging Taylor. I was wrong! I certainly don’t claim to be any type of betting guru, but on the back of last weeks success, I thought I’d give it another go this week.
These are the matches that will be fought out in Liverpool…
James Wade v Dave Chisnall
Wade remains unbeaten so far this year, having drawn with Bunting in Week 1 and easily beating Huybrechts last week. Chisnall is also unbeaten (having won two from two), but he’s been fortunate enough to have played two off-form players – Wright and van Barneveld. Chisnall has the second worst three-dart average so far, and yet sits second in the table – I don’t think he will be after this week, unless he improves considerably on his first two weeks showings.
My prediction: comfortable Wade win.
Peter Wright v Raymond van Barneveld
This is a match between two players really struggling for form. Both players have nil points so far this season, so something has to give – a draw maybe? Wright has really struggled in the first two weeks, has the lowest average of any player and has only won two legs – losing 7-1 to both Chisnall and Anderson. van Barneveld has really struggled to find form in PLD, despite making the Unibet Masters final earlier this month.
My prediction: van Barneveld win
Phil Taylor v Stephen Bunting
After having the better average, but losing to Anderson in Week 1, Taylor played brilliantly and with confidence to take out an on-form Lewis last week. He also has the tournaments second highest average (106.5) and looked confident on the Bournemouth stage. As popular as he is, I think Bunting is looking a little out of his depth at the moment. He upped his game in Week 2 against van Gerwen, but appeared to be affected by the crowd jeering after he missed a couple of doubles.
My prediction: easy Taylor win
Michael van Gerwen v Gary Anderson
For me, these two will be battling out the final come May. van Gerwen has been in scintillating form in 2015. He destroyed Anderson in the German Masters Final last weekend and has hardly thrown a duff dart this year. He’s top of the PLD table with a 108 tournament average – Anderson will need to bring his best game to this one. Anderson is World Champion and other than that final at the weekend, is also having a great 2015. He’ll need all of his cool-headedness to beat Mighty Mike tomorrow night.
My prediction: a draw
Adrian Lewis v Kim Huybrechts
After destroying van Barneveld in Week 1, Lewis looked out of sorts in Bournemouth, losing heavily to Taylor. This typifies his form lately – brilliant one match, ‘average’ the next. After the first nine weeks of the Premier League, two players will be eliminated – I think Huybrects will be one of these. He just doesn’t seem to have the stomach for it at the moment. He’s lost in both the first two weeks and I don’t think it will be any different in Liverpool.
My prediction: comfortable Lewis win
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