The 2019 edition of the PDC Premier League didn’t enjoy the greatest of starts with the withdrawal of Gary Anderson. The Flying Scotsman’s back injury weakens the field and leaves Michael Van Gerwen with an easier path to the title although the Dutchman was pushed all the way by Michael Smith in week one. Here is our Premier League Darts 2019 week two betting preview.
The new format, whereby a number of up and coming players are brought in to replace Anderson is also confusing. Chris Dobey was the first beneficiary and he thrilled the crowd by holding Mensur Suljovic to a 6-6 draw in Newcastle last time out.
We should therefore forget about the complexities of the emergency format and just enjoy the action week-by-week. The opening night produced two draws and five tight games overall so what can we expect as the Premier League roadshow makes its way a little further north to Glasgow?
Snake vs the Bull
Opening up for us in week two is Peter ‘Snakebite’ Wright who takes on Michael ‘Bully Boy’ Smith. Neither man won in Newcastle so while it’s early days in this year’s competition, it would be a relief to get full points on the board.
Smith is the favourite here at best industry odds of 6/5 with 888Sport while Wright follows at 7/4 with William Hill. The draw is a rare outcome in darts but the Premier League saw two 6-6 finishes in week one and this is available now at 61/20 with Guts.
The first Premier League head-to-head between these two resulted in a 7-1 demolition for Smith in what was a poor tournament for Peter Wright overall. Bully Boy went on to defeat Snakebite by that same 7-1 scoreline in their second match up and while Wright is a better player than those numbers suggest, the bookmakers seem to have called the market correctly.
Machine to Roll On?
Rob Cross and James Wade meet in the second game of the evening and in this one there could be some value in backing the outsider. ‘Voltage’ Cross leads the way at 11/10 with Betsafe for the win while James ‘The Machine’ Wade is the marginal outsider at 2/1 with William Hill. The draw then completes proceedings at 7/2 with Bet365.
We’ve no Premier League head-to-head stats for this one as Wade was absent last year but after an incredible comeback season, in which the left hander won back-to-back PDC titles, we’re looking at an upset and a profit at 2/1.
The Iceman Gerwyn Price is up next and the controversial Welshman is one of only three winners from week one in Newcastle. Price faces the veteran Raymond Van Barneveld whose inclusion in this year’s Premier League was based more on sentiment rather than form.
Barney did push James Wade hard before losing 4-7 last week but it’s Price who leads the market at best industry odds of 6/5 with Unibet for the win. Van Barneveld can be picked up at 9/5 with Ladbrokes while the draw is listed at 7/2 with BetFred.
Price has previously stated his dislike for the Premier League but has vowed to focus this year. Back in 2018, Barney won the opening Phase One game between these two but his retirement season has the feel of exhibition darts and we’re not expecting an upset in this one.
This week’s temporary replacement for Gary Anderson is three-time BDO World Champion Glen Durrant. Duzza is making his way in the PDC after successfully getting through Q School and his reward this week is a one-off Premier League tie with Daryl Gurney.
This is the tightest market of all for Glasgow with a number of bookies offering the same win price of 7/5 on both men, In other places, Gurney is the marginal favourite at that industry best of 7/5 with Bet365 while ‘Duzza’ Durrant is close behind at a top price of 8/5 with Unibet.
The draw will therefore get some interest for this one and a share of the spoils can be backed at 10/3 with Bet365 once again. Not only did Chris Dobey produced an honourable draw last week, he produced the most 180s (along with Gerwyn Price) so the Anderson replacements will do more than just make up the numbers. We’re staying with the Gurney win but it should be tight.
Reigning World Champion Michael Van Gerwen had the best of another tough battle with Michael Smith but week two should provide an easier passage. Standing in the way is Austria’s Mensur Suljovic who enjoyed a productive 2018 overall but ‘The Gentle’ has lost his touch in the last three months.
MVG is an odds on option at a best of 1/3 with Coral while the draw is actually second favourite at a best of 11/2 with Bet365. An unlikely victory for Suljovic is out at 13/2 with Unibet and we’re not going to argue with those numbers.
We’ve given our verdicts as we’ve worked through this preview and there are two games where the result betting holds some value. James Wade to beat Rob Cross could hardly be considered as an upset but Wade carries form and a reasonable price of 2/1.
Elsewhere, many punters will be looking to Glen Durrant to overcome Daryl Gurney. Once again, no-one should be shocked but the Northern Irishman is a talented if inconsistent thrower and we’re hoping this is one night where he switches on. We’re still at the stage where losing to a man who is still considered as a BDO player is regarded as an embarrassment so expect Gurney to step up.
There’s little else to get excited about in the match betting so, as a final tip, we’ll take a longer punt. We could opt for the most 180s bet and as we saw last week, the profit can often be delivered by a longer-priced player involved in a lengthy game. Unfortunately, the markets haven’t opened for that as yet so we’ll switch back to the Van Gerwen vs Suljovic match.
The Correct Score betting has some good value in what we think will be an emphatic night for the Dutchman. Van Gerwen to win 7-3 carries the lowest price of 4/1 with Ladbrokes but we’re opting to be braver and take 7-2 at best odds of 7/1 with Bet365. The form of the two men is heading in opposite directions and that scoreline would represent a fitting end to the night.