It was a fairly low-key night of Premier League Darts in Nottingham last time out, with four comprehensive victories and a strange draw between Peter Wright ad Daryl Gurney in which Snakebite outperformed the Irishman in all departments but the one that matters: the final score. Here is our Premier League Darts 2019 week seven betting preview.
One thing the action won’t be in Berlin is low key, with a rabid bunch of Germans – largely devoid of top-class darts on home soil – given the chance to raise the roof as they welcome local hero Max Hopp as their Contender.
He takes on Raymond van Barneveld, a man experiencing woe on and off the oche, and so another ‘home win’ could well be in the offing.
Elsewhere, Rob Cross will be looking to consolidate his top-four place with victory over Gerwyn Price, while James Wade and Peter Wright will meet in a battle for third place.
It’s top vs eighth as Michael van Gerwen tackles Daryl Gurney, and the fourth match of the evening sees Michael Smith and Mensur Suljovic duke it out for the points.
The Price is Right for Hot Cross
Whisper it, but Rob Cross is playing the quality of darts that saw him crowned world champion in the early stages of 2018.
Voltage boasts the highest tournament average in the Premier League thus far – a none-too-shabby 101.13 from six outings, and while that stat doesn’t determine the outcome of a single game, it does tell us how well he is throwing at present.
In contrast, Gerwyn Price has gone completely off the boil in the past couple of weeks, averaging 93.13 and 92.15 in his last pair of Premier League outings, and while the Iceman should get an easier ride from the German crowd than he normally gets, clearly that form won’t be good enough to beat Cross.
All Wright on the Night?
The second match of the night sees Peter Wright, fresh from posting the highest average of the night in Nottingham at 102.91, attempt to shut down the Machine, James Wade.
Given how well he has been playing lately, Wade’s rare off-night against Suljovic was something of a surprise, but every facet of his game was below-par against the Austrian.
Just two points separates third and eighth in the Premier League table, and so this match is still of huge importance despite both these players finding themselves in the top four.
As for punters, they must decide whether Wade’s poor show in the East Midlands was an anomaly or a sign of a more significant downturn. Either way, this looks like one to swerve, with all three results – a Wright win (13/10 with Betfred), a Wade victory (6/4 with Coral) or the draw (33/10 with 888sport) – looking eminently possible.
Out for Revenge
The third game on will see Michael van Gerwen take on the man who humbled him in the Players Championship final back in November; Daryl Gurney.
MVG is so comfortable in his own darting skin he chose not to play in the Players Championship qualifiers at the weekend, and perhaps he is saving up all his energy for a revenge mission against the Irishman.
Gurney, for his part, clearly does not enjoy playing the Dutchman (who does): prior to November, he last beat the Green Machine in 2016!
He hasn’t averaged over 95 since Week Three in Dublin, and that’s not how you go about beating MVG.
Suljovic Assured a Warm Welcome
He may be an Austrian, but Mensur Suljovic is always assured a generous welcome in Germany.
And the feeling seems to be mutual: The Gentle won the German Darts Masters last year, and in the 2018 Berlin leg of the Premier League he averaged just shy of 107 in a 7-3 demolition of Gerwyn Price.
That would suggest that Michael Smith has his work cut out this week, particularly given that he isn’t quite performing to the peak of his powers at the moment.
Bully Boy averaged 93.99 last time out, and he has shown in the past that he doesn’t respond well when the crowd is, erm, ‘vocal’ in supporting his opponent when Smith is throwing at a double.
Mensur has also won five of their last seven meetings with his methodical, idiosyncratic style, and at a price of 9/5 with Betfred he could well be the wager of the week.
Hopp to Trot on Home Soil
Lurid revelations about his private life offer an insight into the trials and tribulations of Raymond van Barneveld, who remains winless in the Premier League with a hopeless tournament average of 92.
Step forward Max Hopp, the talented young German who will be roared on by the Berlin faithful. He will enjoy nothing more than to serve up a winning performance.
The 22-year-old has already won the German Darts Open, and he has a very high performance ceiling: he’s somebody that can comfortably average 100+.
There could be a lot of the home fans to cheer for in Berlin, with both Hopp and adopted son Suljovic looking on track to claim victory in their respective outings.
Elsewhere, it’s hard to see Gurney finding the form from nowhere to trouble Van Gerwen, while Cross should be too hot to handle for Price.
The game of the night, from a competitive perspective, could be Wright vs Wade, who look very evenly-matched…on paper, at least.
- Mensur Suljovic to Win at 9/5 with Betfred
- Rob Cross to Win at 5/4 with MansionBet
- Max Hopp to Win at 6/4 with Betfred