Michael van Gerwen heads Adrian Lewis by a razor’s edge 11-9 in the pair’s past career clashes, but with ice water seemingly flowing through Jackpot’s veins it’s the 11/10 son of Stoke who is fancied to advance to the World Championship final.
It’s a head-to-head that has more relevance than some when it comes to diving victory too, with a whopping 13 duels transpiring during the last 12 months.
Looking solely at the duo’s 2013 tete-a-tetes sees the balance tipped 7-6 in Lewis’ favour.
Although Might Mike has taken two of their three matches, the lurch in superiority towards his opponent is far greater in the last six months.
Of the nine meetings within that timeframe, six have gone the way of the two-time world champion.
Despite arriving off the back of a year in which he finished eighth in the Premier League won by Van Gerwen, it’s the Stoke darter that has seemed more assured on the return to his natural habitat.
Although both men have played some exceptional arrows on the way to the final eliminator, the Dutchman has been less consistent, dropping seven sets along the way.
He’s posted only one straight-sets triumph, against Austrian qualifier Zoren Lerchbacher in round one and his inability to remain focused was illustrated anew in quarter-final combat against Mark Webster.
Van Gerwen allowed the Welshman, who by his own admission has not been at his best this term, to come back from 4-1 down to 4-3 before closing out the tie.
Conversely Jackpot’s passage to this stage has been far more assured, with not more than a set dropped to any of his four foes thus far.
Lewis even boasts a marginally higher three-dart average than the crome-domed Dutch flinger and is fully expected to enjoy a cold dish of revenge at the expense of the man who ended his dreams of an Ally Pally hat-trick in the 2013 edition.
All Odds and Markets are correct as of the date of publishing.
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