The darts World Champs is back, and as exciting as seeing loads of pissed blokes dressed as wombles oggling a walk-on girl might be, the punting opportunities in round one aren’t spectacular. Unless you love backing Michael van Gerwen and Phil Taylor in a 1/100 double. If you do good luck to you.
For the rest of us trying to put a bit of petrol in the car and some turkey on the table during the festive season it might be good to search for a bit of value here, or take a look at which players might win their quarter and don the Ally Pally stage on semi-final day.
We’ve crunched the stats here at Power Tower and this is who we are backing to make the final four.
Phil ‘The Power’ Taylor 1/6
It is hardly an appetising price to kick off with, but Taylor looks unstoppable in the top quarter of the draw. He’s the 16-time World Champ and has picked up eight titles on TV this year from a possible 13. It is likely he’ll meet either Rob Thornton, Wes Newton or Colin Lloyd in his quarter final and here are a few stats to back up that price of 1/6.
- Taylor has a 75 per cent win rate against Rob Thornton and has won both World Championship matches against him in 2012 and 2009
- The Power has a 90 per cent win rate against Colin Lloyd, beating him 35 times and boasting an unblemished record of seven wins from seven matches in Majors
- Taylor’s most impressive record is against Webster who has suffered defeats in 28 of his 30 matches with the 16-time World Champ. They have never met on the biggest stage of them all, but the Power is seven from seven in Majors
- *Taylor, Hamilton, van Gerwen, and Wade to win their Quarters 33/1
- Bet here mobile | desktop *suspends at 21:00 Friday night
Andy ‘The Hammer’ Hamilton 10/3
In the second quarter, world number four Simon Whitlock is well fancied to come out on top, but the Hammer could spring a surprise. Hamilton has made at least the quarters in his last 10 Major events, a record dating back to July 2012.
- Whitlock has a tough enough job to get to a quarter final, as he could meet Kevin Painter in the third round. The Wizard has a just a 53 per cent win rate over the Artist, and Painter beat Whitlock in their only Major clash – the World MatchPlay this year
- Whitlock’s record against Hamilton isn’t too impressive either. He’s won 15 of the 23 head-to-heads, but the Hammer has won both of their matches in Majors and has won their only previous meeing at the World Championships. That was a semi-final in 2012 that Hamilton won 6-5
‘Mighty’ Michael van Gerwen 4/6
MVG is a red-hot favourite to win his quarter and last year’s runner-up is well backed to go one step further and win the whole thing this time around. The Dutch star looks set to face either Dave Chisnall or the five-time champ Raymond van Barneveld in this year’s quarter-final.
- Van Gerwen has a 62 per cent win rate over Chizzy, winning eight of their 13 matches. Chisnall beat van Gerwen in the World Grand Prix in October, but if you take just ranking events into account, Mighty Mike has a 71 per cent win rate over Chizzy
- On the face of it Barney has the edge over his Dutch counter-part, boasting a 56 per cent win rate against MVG. However they have faced each other six times this year with Van Gerwen winning five times, so it is well worth sticking with the new face of darts
James ‘The Machine’ Wade 3/1
James Wade has never won the World Championship and he’s going to have to do it the hard way to come out on top this year. Adrian Lewis is a double World Champ and one of the favourites this year, so it is no surprise to see Jackpot backed for this quarter. However, with possibly either James Wade or Justin Pipe waiting for him, Lewis faces two players he has historically struggled against.
- Lewis has just a 38 per cent win rate against Pipe, losing eight of the 13 matches they have played together. Although they have never met in the World Championship, Pipe has beaten Lewis in their only clash in a Major – a 3-0 whitewash in October’s World Grand Prix
- Against James Wade, Lewis has a win rate of just 34 per cent. The Machine has won 23 of thier 35 meetings and is four for four in Major events. Jackpot has won thier only previous meeting in the World Champs, a semi-final in 2012, decided on the last leg and shrouded in ‘breezegate’.
- James Wade should see off Pipe in their third round match. The Machine has a 78 per cent win rate over Pipe and has won thier only Major meeting, a 9-3 win in the 2008 UK Open