Settle back and get ready for our BDO World Darts Championship 2019 betting tips and odds. Just as the dust is settling on the PDC World Championships and you think the 2018 darts campaign is all over, up pops the BDO World Championship on 5th-13th January to extend the festive feelings.
After some late-in-the-day negotiations, the iconic Lakeside Country Club will once again be on hosting duties. While terrestrial television viewers in the UK will miss out on the action for the first time in decades, punters should beg, steal and borrow access to Eurosport and Quest TV in order to enjoy what should be a cracking tournament.
Glen Durrant, who has won this event for the past two years running, has plenty of motivation to add a third: he would be the first man to achieve a hat-trick of BDO Worlds wins since Eric Bristow, who of course is sadly no longer with us.
But ‘Duzza’ will face stiff competition from a varied field featuring the number one seed, Mark McGeeney, amongst others. The man from Teesside will need to be at the top of his game if he is to get his hands on a trophy; the trophy has already been adorned by the names of former champions like John Lowe; Jocky Wilson; Raymond van Barneveld and Phil ‘the Power’ Taylor.
Tournament History & Format
While the PDC World Championships might enjoy the razzmatazz, the huge prize fund and, arguably, the better players, there is something quaint and hugely enjoyable about the BDO version.
Played at the irreplaceable Lakeside since 1986, many of the world’s finest players have gotten their hands on the trophy.
The format remains the same as normal: the top 24 players in the BDO rankings enter the event in the first round; the top 16 seeded to keep them apart, while a selection of regional and international qualifiers enter in the preliminary round in an attempt to reach the tournament proper.
It’s a straightforward knockout format. The first round contested over the best-of-five sets; the last 16 over seven; the quarters are a race to five sets; meanwhile the semi-finalists will need to win six sets if they are to reach the final on Sunday January 13.
The great and the good of the British Darts Organisation will be on show in Frimley Green.
Durrant and McGeeney will take centre stage, with Grand Slam of Darts participants Jim Williams, Wesley Harms, Michael Unterbuchner, Scott Mitchell and Gary Robson rounding out the top seven seeds.
Last week’s beaten Finder Darts Masters finalist, Richard Veenstra, is the eighth seed; former world and Grand Slam champion Scott Waites and Chris Landman round out the top ten.
There are some intriguing players elsewhere in the draw. Former PDC world finalist Andy Hamilton is back in form after a confidence-building year on the BDO circuit; meanwhile, former Premier League player Wes Newton both enterthe tournament at the preliminary phase.
The ever-dangerous Paul ‘Crocodile Dundee’ Hogan also enters at the earliest possible stage. There will also be a welcome return for Tony O’Shea, who didn’t qualify for last January’s edition of the event.
Sadly, there are some big names notable by their absence. Martin Adams misses out for the first time since 1994; meanwhile, Daryl Fitton is another old Lakeside favourite who will have a watching brief only.
The Betting Favourites
As the classiest operator in the field, Glen Durrant is a short but not-untouchable favourite with the bookmakers; he’s got a best price of 6/5 with Unibet.
In the opposite of the draw to Duzza are Unterbuchner (10/1, Mansion Bet) and McGeeney (11/1, Royal Panda). Meanwhile, Scott Mitchell – a former world champion in his own right – will attract interest at 16/1 (William Hill).
Following some decent showings in the Grand Slam of Darts, Wesley Harms should be respected at a lengthy 25/1 with 888sport.
There are some interesting outliers a little further down the outright betting market.
Dave Parletti (20/1, Bet-at-Home) hasn’t had the best of years in BDO majors; therefore he looks a tad short as a result, but there are plenty of others who intrigue.
Kyle McKinstry is another who has had a fairly quiet year; however, the Irishman boasts power scoring to rival anyone in the organisation when on form. He’s a touch short at 22/1 with Coral; however, don’t be surprised if he enjoys a decent run at Lakeside.
Where’s Andy Hamilton’s game at? The Hammer, a former Worlds, Grand Slam and UK Open finalist in the PDC, clearly has the talent to lift this trophy. He seems to be in some kind of form, getting stitched up in a ‘group of death’ at the Finder Darts Masters at the weekend alongside Unterbuchner and McGeeney. Hamilton beat the former 5-4 before losing to the latter by the same scoreline.
At 25/1 with Ladbrokes, punters backing Hamilton will get a runner proven over the longer format.
And how about this for a trio of long prices: Adam Smith-Neale, who shocked everyone by winning the World Masters in October to book his spot at the Grand Slam, where he had darts to beat Van Barneveld, will be backed in from 40/1 with Royal Panda.
Veenstra, meanwhile, is one of the most eye-catching players in world darts when at his best. The Finder Darts Masters finalist is a lofty price at 50/1 with Bet365.
And how could we forget Hogan (50/1 with bet365), a player so well respected by his peers he got called up to the England squad earlier in the year. He threw a nine-darter to help the Three Lions beat Wales. Remember, this is a guy who had darts to beat Durrant at the 2017 Worlds, and who defeated Jeffrey de Zwaan at the UK Open in March. Write him off at your peril!
This has all the hallmarks to be the most entertaining BDO World Championship renewal in years.
The standard is improving throughout the organisation, and there are some tasty matches in the offing should the draw pan out as planned.
McGeeney is in a tricky little quarter of the draw that also houses Veestra and Waites; a potential semi-final against Unterbuchner or Harms does little to improve the number one seed’s chances. However, the second best player in the field shouldn’t be as long as 11/1, and so we can squeeze some each way value from the BDO’s number one.
The bottom quarter should see some heavyweight clashes. Mitchell and Parletti should meet in the second round; with the winner’s reward would be a possible last eight meeting with Jim Williams. Again, it’s a smelly draw that punters are best to avoid.
And so all fingers point to Durrant, who will be desperate to complete such a unique hat-trick. His path to the final would not be paved with gold. however. He has a potential first-round clash against Smith-Neale – a repeat of the Masters final – arguably the tie of the opening round.
Possible meetings with Hamilton and McKinstry will also prove difficult; however, there is no doubting that the man from Middlesbrough is the best player in the BDO by a country mile when at his best.
And that ‘best’ tends to come in the majors. He’s already won the World Trophy and the Finder Darts Masters in 2018; he lost to Smith-Neale in the other major final of the calendar an averaged 97 or more in each of his Grand Slam matches.
Indeed, Duzza is the only man capable of topping the 100 mark on a consistent basis in the BDO, and so he can be backed with confidence at the 6/5 mark.
The bookies don’t carry many side-markets for this tournament, unfortunately; therefore, our other punt is a straightforward match winner. We’ll be backing Conan Whitehead to down Martin Phillips in the first round at 11/10 with Bet365.
This is a case of a young man making his way in the game meeting a grizzled old veteran on his way down. Phillips lost in the first round of both the Masters and the World Trophy; he has only just clung on to his top-16 ranking by the skin of his teeth.
Whitehead, on the other hand, has lots to be excited about. The 32-yer-old, nicknamed The Barbarian unsurprisingly, won both of his group matches at the Finder Masters before going down 1-3 to Durrant in the last eight.
And at Lakeside last year, he beat the talented Cameron Menzies in the first round before going down in a last-set decider against Williams.
The bricklayer is building a bright future in the sport; hopefully that will continue against Phillips here.