Betvictor World Matchplay Day Two: Preview, Schedule and Prediction Tips
Day two will be the only of the nine days in Blackpool to have to sessions of action.
After last nights shenanigans at the Winter Gardens, we now know anything can happen in Blackpool. The darting world witnessed Jeffrey De Zwaan end Michael Van Gerwen hopes in the early stages of a major once again, another fascinating day of action awaits.
Gary Anderson, Raymond Van Barneveld and Rob Cross will all enlighten the stage throughout the day in Blackpool as well as the first German to appear at the World Matchplay in Max Hopp and a televised title winner in Mensur Suljovic.
Darren Webster v Steve Lennon
• Will be the pairs first ever meeting in the PDC
• Lennon is a finalist on the European Tour this year and well capable of springing a surprise.
• Webster returns to the Winter Gardens after last year’s run to the quarter-finals.
• This will be just Lennon’s fifth appearance on television – with his best run being at last year’s Grand Slam where he reached the last 16.
Prediction: 10-7 – Steve will be a test for Darren however I think the experience Webster has will be vital but I’m definitely not saying this one can’t go either way!
Ian White v Max Hopp
• White has lost five of his six meetings with Hopp.
• Will be the pairs first televised meeting.
• Hopp is starting to deliver the goods after his win at the German Darts Open.
• White has been in immense form this year having won two of his three finals on the ProTour.
• If White can bring his floor game to the stage, there is only one winner.
• Hopp will be the first player of German descent to appear at the Winter Gardens.
Prediction: 10-6 – Max will struggle on debut at the World Matchplay in my opinion. White will play well and I can see him having a good run in Blackpool.
Gerwyn Price v Joe Cullen
• Jet-lag maybe an issue for Price as well as his recent achilles tear.
• The head-to-head is currently in Price’s favour winning three of their four matchups.
• Will surprisingly be the first time these two have met in a televised major.
• Both are yet to win a title in 2018 but Price came close in Austria.
Prediction: 6-10 – Joe has been inform this year and a lot of his fans are impatiently awaiting a television run for the Bradford ace. Gerwyn will struggle with his injury and it will be a fairly easy win for Joe.
Daryl Gurney v Steve West
• Once again, Daryl was one of the eight to travel to Shanghai and Las Vegas. Jet-lag and tiredness may be a factor.
• The head-to-head is currently tied at 2-2 but Daryl has the most important win at the 2016 World Grand Prix.
• The pair have met once in 2018 with Steve winning on that occasion.
• Daryl hit the most maximums in the Premier League while Steve is currently the most prolific 180 hitter on the Players Championship series. It will be a high scoring game that’s for sure!
• Steve missed a huge chance at the UK Open suffering a quarter-final defeat to Dave Pallett.
• Daryl lifted his maiden major less than a year ago in Dublin.
Prediction: 8-10 – I fancy Steve for this one. He has hit the pinnacle of his career at the age of 43 and is looking as though a big television run is coming.
Mensur Suljovic v Steve Beaton
• Steve will once again be at the World Matchplay over two decades after making his debut.
• Mensur has won on the stage twice already this year – in Denmark and Germany.
• Mensur has a dismal head-to-head record against Steve having lost all eight of their meetings.
• Mensur is known to end a poor record like that in a televised tournament.
Prediction: 10-8 – It will be a close affair but Mensur will be a tad too much for Steve in my opinion. That head-to-head record will play on his mind and he will want to put a end to his winning drought against Steve.
Gary Anderson v Stephen Bunting
• Stephen has a decent record against the two-time world champion, having won four of their 10 meetings.
• The pair have met five times on television with Stephen winning two of them, including a 7-1 win in the Premier League in 2016.
• Stephen is in the form of his life right now after reaching the quarter-finals or better seven times this year.
• Gary will now be fancying his chances with Van Gerwen exiting the field.
• Gary has already won six titles in 2018, including a major win at the UK Open.
• ‘The Flying Scotsman’ doesn’t have a good record in Blackpool.
Prediction: 10-5 – Gary will be too much for Stephen despite him before in top-notch form. The two-time world champion has a great chance of a maiden win in Blackpool after Van Gerwen getting an early flight home.
Rob Cross v Mervyn King
• Rob is the world champion and has been saying for months the World Matchplay is next on his list.
• Mervyn is a winner on the tour this year and a potential slip-up for ‘Voltage’.
• Rob is another who will be fancying their chances now with Van Gerwen exiting.
• Mervyn leads the head-to-head and is one of the few players to have a good record against the world champ.
• ‘The King’ has also won the pairs only meeting this year – which came at the inaugural Danish Darts Open.
Prediction: 10-6 – It will be a tough test for Rob in round one, though, with Van Gerwen going home I can see Rob going all the way in Blackpool.
Raymond Van Barneveld v Kyle Anderson
• Kyle has lost four of the last five meetings – which all came last year.
• Barney also leads the overall head-to-head with a 5-4 lead.
• Raymond is much like Phil Taylor as he loves Blackpool but never been giving the chance to lift the trophy there.
• Kyle is a tricky costumer and will be looking to emulate last year’s Auckland Darts Masters run as he heads to Blackpool.
Prediction: 7-10 – I’m going for the energy-lacking Barney to turn up this year. He has not played enough this year and Kyle will fancy his chances against Raymond.
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