Rob Cross and Michael Smith served up a classic for the Yorkshire masses at the The FlyDSA Arena in Sheffield last Thursday when Voltage shocked The Bully Boy.
Putting a dent in Smith’s excellent Premier League form was reigning world champion Rob Cross who emerged a 7-5 victor. It was a match that swung back and forth throughout as Cross took the first leg despite Smith opening up with five superb hits. Before long, it was 2-0 Cross after Smith missed a dart for 102, but his form soon picked up, as he put together a winning of streak of three legs in a row to take the lead. Not to be outdone, Cross went on his own winning run, taking repeated legs in 13, 12, 13 and 12 darts to reclaim a 6-3 lead. Smith won the next two legs before missing a vital 170 finish that left Cross throwing for victory, which he made in two darts, closing for 48.
Other action from Matchday 11Raymond van Barneveld’s slump shows no signs of coming to an end after he won 7-3 to Daryl Gurney in the night’s opener. Barney came into the night off the back of defeats to Michael van Gerwen and Smith, and was on the back foot immediately after Superchin started with a break of throw. RVB did pick up briefly in the second leg, as he landed a 158 finish to level things before he then moved ahead. But Gurney took legs five and six to establish a 4-2 lead, before striking a 180 — his fourth of the night — in leg seven which he closed out with a bullseye. From there, Gurney was never likely to lose, despite Barney holding throw in the ninth leg. Things were over a set later when the Northern Irishman wrapped up the match with a 13-darter.
In the night’s battle of the Scots, Gary Anderson landed four maximums as he swept aside Peter ‘Snakebite’ Wright in a 7-2 win. It was all too easy for the Flying Scotsman, who took the first leg without challenge, then broke Wright in leg 2 before effortlessly adding a third. Wright improved in the fourth, maneuvering himself into a position where he at least had the opportunity to have two shots at double. Typically for Wright of late, he missed both opportunities leaving Anderson to go 4-0 clear. The lead was soon extended to 5-0 as Snakebite, seemingly aiming for the all-time set advantage against record, missed bull for a 161 finish. Anderson passed up the opportunity to whitewash his opponent as he missed his own three shots on double, letting Snakebite back in to finally win a leg. Anderson held throw in the next as he homed in on victory, which came two legs later courtesy of a 13-dart leg.
This was followed by another one-sided affair as Michael van Gerwen delivered a 7-1 mauling to Simon Whitlock. For MVG this represented eight Premier League wins on the spin and came after he lost the first leg but won the next seven to move four points clear at the top of the table. Whitlock won the first leg with a double 16, but that was as good as it got for the Aussie as Mighty Mike then took the second leg in just 13 darts. He took the lead minutes later with a 106 checkout, which was stretched further thanks to a maximum in leg four and another win in the fifth leg. Twelve darts was all it took for van Gerwen to wrap up leg six before closing out the match with an average of 102.37.
Peter Wright finally banked a win — his first in weeks — in his second game of the evening. This time the victory came against Raymond van Barneveld, who was also returning to the oche. The game ended 7-2 to Snakebite, who now moves level on points with Barney. RVG 21 darts to claim the first leg, which gives an indication of quality on offer from these two otherwise normally solid pros. Wright then took legs 2 to 4, hitting two bullseyes and a double 16 for a 132 finish in the last. Barney pulled one back in the fifth leg, before Wright took out 60, 107 and 43 to win the match and some Premier League respectability at long last.
Premier League Darts Betting Tips
This week, we have a bonus night that was squeezed into the schedule to make up for the lost fixtures of the Exeter event, cancelled when a freak snow storm hit the UK over a month ago. Instead, we now head overseas to The Netherlands for Matchday 12 which takes place in the Ahoy Arena in Rotterdam. As usual, Sky Sports will be broadcasting all the action from 19:00 GMT.
The first game of the night features Michael Smith and Gary Anderson with both players showing more than enough to make London’s final four. Smith has been absolutely brilliant so far, while Anderson has been efficient and difficult to beat, gradually raising his form up to where we expect it to be. As such, I think that given Smith’s tough defeat to Rob Cross a week ago and Anderson’s temperament and experience — not to mention his bigger need for points — we will see the two-time Premier League champion from the Scotland take the points here. At Betway, Anderson to win and hit a 100+ checkout with Smith averaging under 100 is worth 4/1 for those that might fancy it.
Next up is Rob Cross versus Daryl Gurney, and while I’m siding with Cross on this one, it’s worth remembering the last time Superchin was the winner in what proved to be an excellent game in Belfast. In truth, there is little to split these two but Gurney, who last week announced the birth of his son, might just be the more worn out of the two. If you fancy Voltage like I do, what about this 5/1 special at Betway; Cross to win, Gurney to hit a 100+ checkout and over 8.5 total 180s.
Raymond van Barneveld and Simon Whitlock are the night’s next pair to play, with both losing last week — twice in Barney’s case. The form book would have you backing The Wizard in this one, but back on Dutch soil, I’m going with van Barneveld to turn his form around. Try Van Barneveld to win, hit under 5.5 total 180s and both players to average under 100 which at Betway is priced at 100/30.
Which brings us to MVG, who also returns to his homeland and in peak form. Pity poor Peter Wright, who having finally won a game last week, looks like a lamb to the slaughter here. In the past there would be no doubt that Snakebite could be in with a chance of taking the match — or at least run it close — but something is up with him right now and MVG back in the lowlands is simply not what he needs at this moment. For extra value on Mighty Mike, jump on him to win by over 2.5 legs, average over 100 and over 1.5 100+ checkouts in the match for the cool price of 9/4.
The closing match of the evening sees Rob Cross take on Gary Anderson, whose unbeaten run in the Premier League now stands at six matches and he’ll hope to extend that here against Rob Cross. Of course, this is providing he wins his first match of the night, which we think he will. The last time they played each other Cross was the winner, the first time he had beaten Anderson and one that felt right at the time. However, with both playing their second match of the night, I think form favours The Flying Scotsman.
Our five-fold for this week is Anderson, Cross, RVB, MVG and Anderson which pays at 25.39/1. Or try the Betway boosted price of 11/2 on this treble; MVG, Barney and Cross to beat Gurney, up from 9/2.
- (11/5) Michael Smith v Gary Anderson (10/11)
- (10/11) Rob Cross v Daryl Gurney (11/5)
- (6/5) Raymond van Barneveld v Simon Whitlock (13/8)
- (11/2) Peter Wright v Michael van Gerwen (1/3)
- (11/8) Rob Cross v Gary Anderson (11/8)