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Masters (Milton Keynes)

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World Championships over and the 1st event we come to is the Masters. This event has been utterly dominated by Michael Van Gerwen over the last 4 years. He won it in 2015 with a 103.64 average, 2016 with a 105.07 average, 2017 with a 106.07 average and last year with a 105.40 average so I am quite frankly avoiding the top half of this event. Luckily, Anderson is also in the top half so we can find a couple of decent odds players in the bottom half, to go each-way on.

Here's the draw :

Van Gerwen Vs J.Clayton
M.Suljovic Vs S.Whitlock
D.Gurney Vs D.Chisnall
G.Anderson Vs D.Webster
R.Cross Vs J.Cullen
G.Price Vs J.Wade
M.Smith Vs I.White
P.Wright Vs A.Lewis

I think the three players I like are Smith, Cross & Lewis (as an outsider)

Cross seems to be getting back close to his form of old. He had a good world championship where he averaged over 100 in his 3 matches. In fact, here last year (went out in the Quarter-Finals) he averaged over 100 too; that kind of average could get him to the semi-finals alone. There he would meet my second tip, Michael Smith. Smith had a fantastic world championship getting to the final ofcourse (although not really performing like he can once in the final) Smith regularly hits over a ton and I fancy him to reach the final here. My only worry for him is he has just got married and been away on holiday. How much practise time has he had? I asked him about it on Twitter and he said he was raring to get back so that will do for me. Luckily he faces White round 1 to get himself back into the swing.

My final bet is a little outsider in Lewis. Lewis is 40/1 which is far too overpriced. If he beats an unimpressive Wright and Smith isn't on his game, he could quite easily see himself in a final. His form has picked up a little recently and he had a good world championship, hitting over 101 average against Van Gerwen and having an average of over 96 for his 3 matches.

2pts E/W M.Smith to win the Masters 9/1 Boylesports
1.5pts E/W R.Cross to win the Masters 12/1 Sportingbet
0.5pts E/W A.Lewis to win the Masters 40/1 Sportingbet

Thoughts? 

@Roy The Boy @nottingham21 @Tobulas @owenclass @notanotherdonkey @Tommyt003 @Sir Puntalot @Bubbles180 @kroni @Torque @discipline @Clarky

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Not much I can add to that TBH. At the prices I'd favour Lewis over Smith and Cross in the bottom half, particularly as Lewis starts against Wright who looked well off the pace at the Ally Pally. Smith should come through the first round though - White can't be feeling all that confident after being knocked out at the Worlds even though he was leading by two sets - but I'd be wary of backing him to win the tournament at a comparatively short price after he was so underwhelming against Van Gerwen in the Worlds final and a repeat of that final would be likely if Smith made it to the final here.

As for the first round of matches, Whitlock should have a chance against Suljovic as his form has improved whilst Suljovic disappointed at the Worlds; Gurney against Chisnall should see plenty of 180's; Price and Wade will likely be a coin-flip (as the prices suggest) and should stand a good chance of going the distance whilst Webster could be competitive against Anderson who was riding his luck for large parts of his Ally Pally campaign and so based on these thoughts I'll put up the following bets:

Lewis to beat Wright @ 2.20 BetVictor

Whitlock to beat Suljovic @ 3.00 BetVictor

Over 180's line at around even money in Gurney against Chisnall

Over 16.5 legs between Price and Wade @ 1.73 BetVictor

Over 15.5 legs between Anderson and Webster @ 1.83 BetVictor

I'll also be on Lewis to win the tournament each-way :hope

Edited by Torque

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Looking forward to tonight as we get this event under way. 4 matches tonight aswell as 4 tomorrow night to make up Round 1, before the Quarter-finals start on Sunday.

Daryl Gurney faces Dave Chisnall first up and Gurney looks the pick for me. Although the match-ups have been close, Gurney has won the last 3 and 7-4 overall. I think the majoriy of these players (including Gurney) will be looking at practice for the Premier League, but with Gurneys decent form in 2018 and the longer format here, I think he will win this one. Some could say he had a poor Worlds but he averaged over 100 in the 2nd round before losing to Jamie Lewis 4-3 in the 3rd round. However, Gurney has match darts and also led the final set 2-0 so it could have been him facing Chizzy to face Anderson, and not Lewis.

Mensur Suljovic faces Simon Whitlock next up and I am going to side with Mensur. He has had abit of poor form recently at the worlds but Whitlock looked worse. Whitlock lost 3-0 to Ryan Joyce in the World Championships and averaged just 87.63. Suljovic, granted, went out with a 90 average but he has a good record against Simon, winning the last 3 and doing so comfortably (won the last match 10-1) and also 8-3 and 6-3. I'm going to take Sulli on a -1.5 handicap. i don't think we will see too many deciding legs here.

Another I like, which is tomorrow is James Wade to beat Price. Wade as we all know, doesn't score ridiculously heavy like alot of these players, but he is solid at winning games where the other player doesn't perform to his capabilities. He is a real grinder, and has a good h2h record against Price (beating him last 3 of last 4) and I also feel like in Price we don't know what we're going to get yet. Still searching for his past form. He went out of the Worlds with an 89 average where as Wade went fairly deep in the tournament going out in the 4th round. (93.57, 94.71 & 90.77 averages) I get the feeling if Wade was to hit a 93-95 average here, he would wint his one.

One other thing to note is Gary Anderson has pulled out of this and has been replaced by S.Bunting.

5.5pts D.Gurney to beat D.Chisnall 10/11 Coral
5.5pts M.Suljovic (-1.5 legs) to beat S.Whitlock 8/11 BetVictor
5.5pts J.Wade to beat G.Price 10/11 bet365

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We're already into the Last 8 today. We should have had a full house of wins last night but Gurney lost it after being ahead and flying. First up Chisnall faces Bunting. Whilst Chisnall came back and won with a 97.56 average, Bunting struggled through to win with an 86.58 average. I think that big difference in averages will count today and I'm taking Chizzy on a handicap.

The final match has Smith up against Peter Wright. Wright beat Lewis on a deciding leg but looked like he is visibly struggling. It looked like a mammoth victory and something he didn't look like he expected. Lewis also missed a match dart. Smith looked abit rusty in parts but ultimtely won easy enough after the 5-5 break and won 10-5 with an above 100 average. Wright meanwhile didn't even hit 90 against Lewis. I'm going to take Smith on a handicap.

5pts D,Chisnall (-1.5 legs) to beat S.Bunting 4/5 Paddypower
6pts M.Smith (-1.5 legs) to beat P.Wright 5/6 bet365

 

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Semi-finals start at 7. Van Gerwen faces the in-form Chisnall and Peter Wright faces James Wade, Wright looked alot better against Smith. His doubles were very dodgy at the start but he improved alot to win with a similar average to Wade. You get the feeling though that anybody who can score heavy has a great chance of beating him. I am going to take Wright here. His scoring was very good and I think with the pressure on, Wade could crack

6pts P.Wright to beat J,Wade 4/6 bet365

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