Robert Thornton vs Dave Chisnall
These two met at the weekend at the Masters and it was plain sailing for Robert Thornton. Cruising into an 8-0 lead in a race to 10, there was more chance of Conor McGregor being humble than there was of a Chizzy comeback.
But Chizzy did comeback. Reeling off 10 of the next 11 legs, the yellow peril sensationally won the game on his way to an appearance in the final. Thornton is the pick most darts fans were questioning for this year’s competition, and he’s in rotten form. Chizzy in reality should’ve been in the Premier League final last year, missing darts to win against Gary Anderson. He’ll want to start his 2016 campaign off right. Back a Chizzy win by 7-2 at .
Peter Wright vs Michael Smith
Peter Wright has to win a major soon or he’s in danger of becoming the next Wayne Mardle. He’s currently the world number five, but just can’t seem to go all the way on TV. His performances over the last year would suggest that the maiden major is not far away.
The problem for him on Thursday is that he’s up against another player that’s on the cusp. Michael Smith is the young talent that’s going to be a World Champion. Making his debut in the Premier League on Thursday and currently #8 in the rankings, things can only go up for Bully Boy. Back an entertaining draw at .
Michael Van Gerwen vs James Wade
Michael Van Gerwen has won 45 of his last 47 televised darts matches.
He retained his Masters title, and averaged 104 for the entire tournament.
James Wade had a good weekend as well, knocking out Adrian Lewis and Kim Huybrechts on his way to a semi-final appearance. He’s the second most succesful player in PDC history and a seven-time major winner, so he’s got the quality. But not even he can stop the unstoppable. Van Gerwen 7-3 Wade at .
Phil Taylor vs Raymond van Barneveld
One of the oldest rivalries in darts continues in Leeds as Phil Taylor and Raymond Van Barneveld go head to head. There’s more pressure on the Power these days as he starts to drop down the rankings, with pundits and players alike questioning whether the Stoke thrower still has it in him to win another TV event.
Barney was one of only three men to beat MVG in the last year. He did so in a fantastic match at the World Championships, but then was poor in the Masters , losing to Chizzy. The Premier League format seems to suit the Dutchman though. He’s reached the playoffs on four of the last five occasions.
Taylor will just have enough to topple Van Barneveld. Taylor 7-4 at .
Gary Anderson vs Adrian Lewis – Editor’s Note: This game has been postponed due to Gary Anderson’s illness.