Rag2gar previews the World Matchplay Darts and has four selections in the outright betting, which are Adrian Lewis, Dave Chisnall Gary Anderson and Jelle Klaasen.
World Matchplay Preview:
As we approach the 2015 World Matchplay, I can't stop thinking about Phil Taylor's unbelievable record in this event and in particular his triumph last year, which was undoubtedly his most impressive yet.
The 15-time World Matchplay champ is looking to land an incredible 8th successive title this year, yet he's freely available at 10/3 to do so. Now to anyone that doesn't watch darts, that must seem an incredibly generous price. To a statistician, inconceivable. But, the Premier League was only two short months ago and there Taylor was in such poor form he couldn't even stumble his way to the playoffs.
Although a victory in Tokyo followed and it wasn't that long ago that Taylor was a set way from his 17th World Championship, there has been absolutely nothing to suggest The Power is anywhere near the force of old since the day he lifted this title 12 months ago. Even then he came into this event struggling. Unless he pulls a performance out of nowhere (like he did last year), I cannot have Phil Taylor winning it again this year. The form is just not there for him to do it.
Enter World Number 1 Michael Van Gerwen. Although Mighty Mike was disappointing in the playoff stage of this year's Premier League, I still think it was quite evident that he was the best player over the course of the competition as a whole. I think he's a worthy favourite for this year's Matchplay and should have an excellent chance of winning it. Having said that his form away from the TV cameras hasn't been astounding of late and the English press have been on his back too with the Sun reporting a few months back that he's been cheating on his wife. Although you might think the latter has nothing to do with darts, how many times have we seen professionals crumble as a result of infamy in the media? If players are not completely at peace with themselves it can affect their mental toughness and such resolves will be tested many times over the course of the Matchplay for MVG.
So for me I think the value lies outside of the two favourites for this year's Matchplay. In fact, you could argue quite a case as to why Gary Anderson is third in the betting when he has been a most deserving winner of the last two darting majors? I certainly couldn't explain why. I think he's a nice bet at 6/1 but I'm going to have a bit of a gamble this year and pick Adrian Lewis as the winner of the Matchplay.
There is not much in the form book to suggest that he can win this, but I particularly liked the way he played in the World Cup of darts in June alongside Phil Taylor. To me that was the last significant line of form despite some tour events having taken place since. His scoring was good and reminded me a bit of the Lewis of old, who used to put on such an exhibition of darting flair when he took to the oche. If he can recapture his old form like I suspect he might, 16/1 looks a massive price.
Another one who seems to get perennially overlooked by the odds makers is Dave Chisnall. From the start of this year's Premier league campaign right through to the end of it Dave Chisnall was tremendous. At 22/1 he's another very attractive bet and will be my third selection for the Matchplay. My final pick is recent tour winner Jelle Klaasen who has been on my shortlist ever since he was so narrowly defeated at this year's World Championship by eventual winner Gary Anderson. Roy The Boy highlighted him in his weekly blog and I will have a play at the massive odds of 150/1 offered by Skybet.
So there you have it. Four selections that should give us plenty to look forward to next week. The Matchplay is one of the highlights of the darting calendar and it's no surprise that many of the top players list it as their favourite tournament of the year. Especially Phil Taylor!
3 points win Adrian Lewis to win the 2015 World Matchplay (16/1 Sporting Bet).
0.5 point win Jelle Klaasen to win the 2015 World Matchplay (150/1 Sky Bet).