PDC World Championship 2017 Preview
Headline seeds: Michael Van Gerwen, Stephen Bunting, Mensur Suljovic and Robert Thornton
I have been maintaining for a while that Van Gerwen can be shocked. Whitlock and Bunting who will play in round two both have that kind of potential. Whitlock almost did it a few weeks ago. The bottom half of this section also will see Robert Thornton likely have to beat Simon Stevenson and then Gurney or Wattimena. I cannot see the out of form Scotsman coming through that test. Suljovic has transformed into a great player and he will surely oppose either Whitlock or Van Gerwen in the quarter final. I expect Van Gerwen to come through but Whitlock will play him close
Shock of the quarter: Simon Stevenson defeats Robert Thornton
Match of the quarter: Simon Whitlock v Michael Van Gerwen
Winner of the quarter: Michael Van Gerwen
Headline seeds: Adrian Lewis, Raymond Van Barneveld, Phil Taylor and Kim Huybrechts
This is the strongest quarter. Corey Cadby, James Wilson and Robbie Green were three of the toughest non seeded players that could be drawn. Alan Norris, Joe Cullen and Van Der Voort are also dangerous on their day. Lewis has weak form and on that can be overlooked. Barney to get through this quarter would have to overcome Robbie Green, Alan Norris, Adrian Lewis or his conqueror and Phil Taylor or his conqueror. That just looks too tough which makes me give the edge to Taylor although if Kim can adapt better than he has to Ally Pally in recent years then he may beat Phil. What a quarter!
Shock of the quarter: Adrian Lewis does not make it to the third round
Match of the quarter: Alan Norris v Raymond Van Barneveld
Winner of the quarter: Phil Taylor
Headline Seeds: Gary Anderson, Benito Van De Pas, Dave Chisnall, Jelle Klaasen
Gary Anderson will be happy with the state of his draw for the opening few rounds. No one in his mini section looks capable of stopping him making the quarter final. Chisnall and Klaasen would be favourites to oppose him but both can have off days and have capable opposition. Kist, Dobey, Rodriguez and de Graaf are a strong section of unseeded players and maybe one could cause a shock. I expect Chizzy to come through and maybe shock Anderson
Shock of the quarter: Christian Kist to defeat Brendan Dolan
Match of the quarter: Dave Chisnall v Jelle Klaasen
Winner of the quarter: Dave Chisnall
Headline seeds: Peter Wright, Ian White, Michael Smith, James Wade
A few really good first round matchups in this section. I like Beaton v Peterson and Price v Clayton while Ricky Evans and Steve West are also impressive players. Mervyn King is a dangerous player while Michael Smith can beat anyone on his day. Gerwyn Price has consistency issues while Ian White makes everything as hard as possible. Wright is much better and more consistent than anyone in this section and can cause lots of trouble.
Shock of the quarter: Jonny Clayton to defeat Gerwyn Price or Mervyn King to defeat Michael Smith
Match of the quarter: Jonny Clayton v Ian White
Winner of the quarter: Peter Wright
That leaves semi finals of Taylor v Van Gerwen and Wright v Chisnall. It probably sees another final of Wright v MVG. I really see MVG losing but am not sure who does it.
1. Peter Wright E/W @12.00
I have to bet on Wright here. Anderson and perhaps Chizzy are the two men capable int his half of stopping him reaching the final.
2. Peter Wright win quarter @2.10
This just doubles up on the bet above but is even more likely as Wright should comfortably be favourite against everyone in his quarter
3. Over 106.5 highest match average @1.83
Because of the longer format, higher averages are harder to attain. The reason I like this is you have to assume that there are 10 players capable of this quality, especially in the early rounds and one of them will probably manage it
4. Two or more nine dart finishes @3.50
Once again this is a sheer quality argument. Pretty much anyone in the top sixteen can hit a nine darter without causing great shock while dangerous players like Norris and Gurney are more than capable. I expect one from MVG and another from Kim.
5. Gary Anderson Stage of Elimination- Quarter Final @5.50
My case has already been stated. Gary does not enter this with the form of either of the last two seasons and I really believe he can be beaten early but Chizzy is the first really good player he is schedule to play.