Darts: Best bets from Week 8 of the Premier League

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DARTS expert expert Kyle Brown (@Kyleianbrown) talks us through the eighth week of Premier League action, picking out his favourite fancies from the double-nighter.

Week 8 – Wednesday 27th March 2019 | Rotterdam

*Predicted winners in bold, neither indicates draw.

Week 8 – Thursday 28th March 2019 | Rotterdam

  • Daryl Gurney (6/4) v Mensur Suljovic (5/4)
  • Peter Wright (5/4) v Gerwyn Price (6/4)
  • Rob Cross (8/13) v Jeffery de Zwann (5/2)
  • Michael van Gerwen (2/7) v Raymond van Barneveld (6/1)
  • James Wade (13/8) v Michael Smith (5/4)

*Predicted winners in bold, neither indicates draw.

**Night two prices all from Sky Bet as best prices not available as of 09:00 27/03. Majority of bookmakers not offering until the conclusion of night one.

The Week 8 Betting Angle

With just nine constant players this season, only one of them will crash out of the Premier League during judgement night in Rotterdam this week. Split over the two days it provides players at the bottom with an extra opportunity to get the points they need to survive.

However, a Raymond van Barneveld loss topped with a Michael Smith win would negate any chance of survival for the retiring Dutchman as he’d be out of reach for eighth place. Smith, who is yet to beat anybody above him in the table still finds himself only three points off the top 4, but it must be said that his form of late has been woeful.

At the other end of the table, Rob Cross will have a fantastic opportunity to take home maximum points in Rotterdam and extend his lead at the top, as he faces Mensur Suljvoic and challenger Jeffery de Zwann.

Reigning champion and world number 1, Michael van Gerwen, is Cross’ nearest challenger two points back, and if he can overcome a hot and cold Peter Wright on Wednesday he will face his countryman Barney in the second night, who may well just be playing for pride if results go against him.

Cross is the man to beat

Cross was great value last week at 5/4 and delivered a victory with relative ease. He performed well over the weekend at the European Darts Open, winning through four rounds which included the likes of Justin Pipe and Premier League counterpart Peter Wright, before eventually being defeated by Michael van Gerwen, 8-6.

However, stats would suggest he’s going to have no trouble overcoming his two opponents this week, Mensur Suljovic and challenger Jeffery de Zwann. Mensur, who is in a three-way tie for fourth, averaged eight points lower than tournament leader Cross in Berlin. He is also averaging less 180’s per night and his highest average checkout is the worst in the league (80.43) – Cross is averaging the highest (105.86).

Cross’ second opponent, de Zwann, has only managed one victory against a player ranked in the top 25 this year – Daryl Gurney back in February. De Zwann has won just five of his last 10 competitive matches, while Cross has won 13 of 15. It’s also worth noting that Cross dispatched de Zwann at their last meeting, 3-1 in the World Championship.

Bully Boy to deliver maximums

Michael Smith finds himself in an uneasy position where he could be the player eliminated from judgement night. It would be quite the fall from grace for last year's runner up, and his night won’t be made easy as he takes on Gerwyn Price on Wednesday who is himself in decent form.

Smith will be feeling the pressure, but no matter the situation or opponent, he still finds a way to hit maximums. This season, he has hit 22 (3.14 per night), which is second only to his opponent on 24 (3.43 per night). However, Price’s numbers are inflated from the start of the season, where he hit the most of any player in Weeks 1, 3 and 4. Since then he has yet to lead the night on maximums.

Smith has had more 180’s than his opponent on four of the seven nights (57%) and is good value at 10/11 to beta out his opponent on the night.

Best Bets

Rob Cross to win on both nights (2/1 SkyBet)

Rob Cross v Jeffrey de Zwann – Rob Cross -2.5 handicap (1/1 SkyBet)

Gerwyn Price v Michael Smith – Michael Smith most 180’s (10/11 Coral)

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