The 2022 Premier League of Darts gets underway on Thursday the 3rd of February at the Motorpoint Arena in Cardiff and, following an interrupted couple of seasons, will return to its weekly roster.
The format, however, is new as each Premier League of Darts night will actually be a kind of a mini-tournament that will comprise of an eight-man knockout event featuring some of the best darts players with four quarter-finals, two semis and a final, all played over the best of 11 legs.
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Players will now receive two points for reaching the semis, while the runner-up will pick up three points with five going to the winner.
These points are then applied to the new-look Premier League table each week and the top four points scorers over the course of the 16 weeks will go through to the playoffs on the 26th of May at the Utilita Arena in Newcastle.
2022 Darts Premier League Line Up
This Thursday will be the 18th edition of the tournament and Cardiff will host the first of 16 nights of darting action — and we now know the eight players taking part in this year’s event.
World number one Gerwyn Price heads the lineup of those taking part in the 2022 Premier League and will be joined by reigning world champion Peter Wright and defending champion Jonny Clayton.
Five-time Premier League champion Michael van Gerwen will also be in competition, as will former winners James Wade and Gary Anderson.
Completing the lineup are the PDC Darts World Championship beaten finalist Michael Smith and recently crowned Darts Masters champion Joe Cullen.
2022 PREMIER LEAGUE OF DARTS SCHEDULE
- Night 1, Thursday February 3: Motorpoint Arena, Cardiff
- Night 2, Thursday February 10: M&S Bank Arena, Liverpool
- Night 3, Thursday February 17: SSE Arena, Belfast
- Night 4, Thursday February 24: Mercedes-Benz Arena, Berlin
- Night 5, Thursday March 3: Westpoint Exeter
- Night 6, Thursday March 10: The Brighton Centre
- Night 7, Thursday March 17: Motorpoint Arena, Nottingham
- Night 8, Thursday March 24: Rotterdam Ahoy, Rotterdam
- Night 9, Thursday March 31: Utilita Arena Birmingham
- Night 10, Thursday April 7: First Direct Arena, Leeds
- Night 11, Thursday April 14: AO Arena, Manchester
- Night 12, Thursday April 21: P&J Live, Aberdeen
- Night 13, Thursday April 28: 3Arena, Dublin
- Night 14, Thursday May 5: OVO Arena, Glasgow
- Night 15, Thursday May 12: Utilita Arena, Sheffield
- Night 16, Thursday May 19: The O2, London
- Play-Offs, Thursday May 26: Utilita Arena Newcastle
2022 DARTS PREMIER LEAGUE BETTING TIPS
This year’s event has been chopped from ten participants down to eight, the first seven of which came as no surprise even if it does omit a few big names, such as Jose de Sousa, Dimitri Van den Bergh and Rob Cross.
The announcement was made by the PDC immediately after the conclusion of last weekend’s Darts Masters, which was won by Joe Cullen.
This was Cullen’s maiden PDC title and saw him take the eighth and final place in this year’s Premier League line up.
That was exactly what happened to Jonny Clayton last year when he went on to win the 2021 Premier League of Darts. The Rockstar will hope he can follow in the footsteps of The Ferret.
Sunday was Joe Cullen’s first-ever major final, but he has won some ranking titles over the past few seasons and he will now look to push on and get himself into the top 10 on the PDC’s Order of Merit.
Who Will Make The Play Offs?
Given the all-new format, it’s tough to call where the money will be flowing and obviously very difficult to predict how the tourney will pan out.
However, if we take consistency into account, the players that should be competing for the weekly titles are Gerwyn Price, Michael van Gerwen, Jonny Clayton and, at a pinch, Peter Wright.
That would represent a very solid last four for the play offs, where anything could happen, although bet365 have been quick to install Gerwyn Price as the outright favourite at 11/4.
There are consistently question marks around the streaky Peter Wright and his biggest threat for making the last four most weeks (thus earning enough points to qualify for the play offs) could possibly come from Michael Smith.
Part of Snakebite’s problem is that he never settles on his darts and, for The Masters, he switched again changing every aspect of his world championship, winning darts from the point to the barrel, the stem and the flight.
He then went on to play one game at The Masters, where he lost to Simon Whitlock.
If he changes darts each week, his consistency will be impacted negatively for sure, but when he’s good, he’s great so I’ll stick with him to make the final four in my darts betting picks – just.
Adding To CV’s
Wright, alongside Gerwyn Price, are the two players who will want to win the Premier League more than anyone this season.
Both players are aiming to claim all of the events but they are yet to win and this trophy, one of the biggest in darts, makes for a glaring absence on both of their CVs.
bet365 have priced up Snakebite at 9/2 to win the 2022 Darts Premier League.
Elsewhere, Michael van Gerwen is looking to win this event for the sixth time.
Mighty Mike hasn’t won a televised event on the tour for the past few seasons and the world number three will be desperate to prove he can get back to the top of the sport.
Backers can pick up 7/2 on MVG at bet365 to return to winning ways.
Having lost out at the last minute yet again at the Ally Pally in January, Michael Smith will be hungry as ever to win his first major tournament.
Bully Boy is likely to relish this new format of playing multiple games should he win and has a good chance of making the play offs from where anything could happen.
bet365 Darts Betting Odds
- Gerwyn Price – 11/4
- Michael van Gerwen – 7/2
- Peter Wright – 9/2
- Jonny Clayton – 9/2
- Michael Smith – 7/1
- Joe Cullen – 11/1
- Gary Anderson – 16/1
- James Wade – 20/1
2022 PREMIER LEAGUE OF DARTS BETTING TIPS: NIGHT 1
Thursday night gets underway with Jonny Clayton taking on the man who succeeded him as Darts Masters champion Joe Cullen.
This being a Cardiff event, the crowd will be behind reigning Premier League champion Clayton who is already odds on to win his season opener and I suspect he will.
Tourney Debutant Cullen is an intriguing selection in this first week however as we wait to see what a PDC title does for his confidence.
The Rockstar also has an excellent head-to-head record against Clayton having won seven of their eight meetings.
The second game of the night is between world number one Gerwyn Price and world number four James Wade.
Being a Welshman, for once Price should have the crowd rooting for him which wont be the case for Wade and I expect the Iceman to bank some early season points.
Be warned though, the Machine holds a 10-7 head-to-head record over Price.
Repeat Of The Ally Pally Final
World champion Peter Wright steps out next for the third game of the night when he takes on Michael Smith in a repeat of the World Championship final.
This is a really tough one to call and it really all depends on which version of Snakebite (and which darts) turn up.
For the sake of revenge, I’ll go with Bully Boy, who has only won 12 out of the 24 meetings between the pair, to strike an opening night blow on the world champ.
Lastly, we have a clash between former World and Premier League champions Michael van Gerwen and Gary Anderson.
Regardless of form, it is never dull when these two meet.
The head-to-head score between the pair reads 46-18 in van Gerwen’s favour.
Either MVG’s form has dipped or the rest have just caught up with him but he, along with Anderson, is no longer the force of old.
Both disappointed at last weekend’s Masters but The Flying Scotsman made the last four at the Alexandra Palace over the recent festive season so a narrow win for Anderson is the final night one, round one prediction.
If things go as we expect them to, then we can look forward to an all Welsh semi-final, which will guarantee one local finalist to the delight of the crowd.
Despite what happened last time they met, I would expect Price, who missed this event last year due to covid, to make the final where I suspect Michael Smith will be waiting.
From there it would come as no surprise to see The Iceman win night one and bank his first five points of the new Premier League of Darts season.
bet365 Darts Betting Odds For Premier League of Darts 2022 Night One
- Jonny Clayton (8/13) v (13/10) Joe Cullen
- Gerwyn Price (2/5) v (2/1) James Wade
- Peter Wright (8/11) v (11/10) Michael Smith
- Michael van Gerwen (4/9) v (7/4) Gary Anderson
QUICK GLANCE AT THE PREMIER LEAGUE OF DARTS WEEK ONE
Venue: Motorpoint Arena, Cardiff
Format: Best of 11 legs (first to six)
Current Champion: Jonny Clayton
Where To Watch: Sky Sports Main Event HD & Sky Sports Arena HD
When To Watch: 19:00 UK