Unibet Premier League – Week 16 Preview & Predictions

It’s crunch time in the Unibet Premier League, as the league phase reaches its final destination.

The First Direct Arena in Leeds is the venue, with two of the four semi-final vacancies for the O2 Arena filled. The other two places are still very much up in the air, with a number of possible permutations still available.

Unibet Premier League table (PDC)

Here’s the preview and predictions for the final week of action.

Gerwyn Price (6th) v Peter Wright (8th)

Only a win will do for Gerwyn Price in Yorkshire, if he is to have any chance of extending his season. He lies in sixth place, and will need other results as well as his own to aid him in his play off bid.

Peter Wright has long been out of contention, but will have designs on finishing his season with a flourish.

Premier League Week 15

Price became involved in a heated contest with Daryl Gurney in last week’s Premier League action in Sheffield. In a high stakes match, Price hit the front, but missed darts for a 7-3 lead that would come back to haunt him. Gurney clawed his way back for a point, and what followed were ugly scenes, with Gurney unhappy with Prices alleged antics during the match.

Wright again succumbed to defeat in a largely disappointing campaign. It was always likely to be a tall task against Michael van Gerwen, and although Wright posted a more than respectable 102.29 average, but it was only good enough for an 8-1 defeat.

European Darts Grand Prix

The latest Euro Tour action came from Sindelfingen, Germany last weekend. Price went out at the last sixteen stage, exiting 6-4 to Darren Webster.

Wright’s small shoots of recovery continued with a run to the final, aided with a long overdue win over Michael van Gerwen, 6-3 in the quarter finals. He was edged out in the final, with Ian White scooping the title with an 8-7 victory.

Prediction: This could well be a nervy affair for Price, and he has been guilty of missing key doubles for significant leads at times. He has also had some adverse luck with numerous bounce outs, and will have to remain focused. I think Wright will have motivation, but is ultimately playing for pride. I favour Price to grab an 8-6 win.

Daryl Gurney (5th) v Michael Smith (8th)

The pressure is also on Daryl Gurney. With Mensur Suljovic facing Michael van Gerwen, a win for the Irishman could well secure him top four status. Michael Smith has been patchy at best in 2019, but will be looking to end his season on a high.

Premier League Week 15

Gurney became embroiled in a heated match with Gerwyn Price in Sheffield, which ended in a 7-7 draw. Gurney was unhappy with perceived talking from Price during the game, and his anger boiled over post-match. Gurney has since apologised for his behaviour.

Smith picked up a point in a 7-7 draw with James Wade, moving him away from the foot of the table

European Darts Grand Prix

Both men suffered last sixteen defeats in Sindelfingen.

Gurney exited to UK Open Champion, Nathan Aspinall, while Smith went out to Jeffrey de Zwaan, both by 6-4 score lines.

Prediction: Smith will still have his pride to play for, and I expect him to give Gurney a stiff test. I think this one could well end in a 7-7 draw.

Michael van Gerwen (2nd) v Mensur Suljovic (4th)

Mensur Suljovic arrives in Leeds facing a mammoth task to maintain at least his fourth place position in the league. Michael van Gerwen will of course want to finish the league phase as top dog yet again, but will need to rely on a Rob Cross slip up in order to stand a chance.

Premier League Week 15

Van Gerwen was in imperious form in Sheffield last week. A ruthless 8-1 hammering of Peter Wright came with a 110.85 average, and a 72% success rate on the doubles.

Suljovic was powerless to stop Rob Cross from taking an 8-4 win. A 98.59 average, and 57% on the doubles, were still not enough for Mensur to make a dent on the table topper.

European Darts Grand Prix

van Gerwen didn’t continue his recent domination of the Euro Tour, as Peter Wright took his scalp 6-3 in the quarter finals.

Suljovic was dumped out at the opening hurdle, with Steve Beaton coming through 6-5 in their encounter.

Prediction: This is a tough ask for the Austrian, and he is certainly the most vulnerable of the playoff contenders. I can’t see past an MVG win, and I lean toward an 8-5 win for the Dutchman.

Rob Cross (1st) v James Wade (3rd)

The final match of the night will decide if Rob Cross tops the table, and if James Wade qualifies for the O2. So there is plenty to play for. By the time the match comes around, both will know what is required of them.

Premier League Week 15

Cross was again at his clinical best in Sheffield, beating Mensur Suljovic 8-4. He averaged 102.66 and well over 45% on the doubles to ease to a playoff clinching two points.

Wade was bitterly disappointed with a point with Michael Smith last week. A 161 checkout was the highlight for “the machine” but a mere 92 average wasn’t enough to take maximum points.

European Darts Grand Prix

Cross crashed out early in Germany, going down 6-3 to an in form Jeffrey de Zwaan.

Wade decided to bypass the event all together, instead choosing to fully focus on his play off push.

Prediction: This could well be a nervy affair depending on the other results, but I fancy Cross to hold off Wade 8-6 in a high quality affair.

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