Darts’ World Grand Prix: Wade picked to take final on handicap

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It has been a memorable World Grand Prix for James Wade. A nine-dart finish in the second round against Robert Thornton prefaced the defeat of Phil Taylor in the next outing. All that remains is the final.

Should the man from Aldershot slip to Michael van Gerwen in the Dublin showpiece, what has been an achievement-filled tournament will leave a bitter aftertaste for Wade.

James Wade (+1.5) to win @ 11/10

The pair’s career battles may be split at 10 wins apiece, but generally their encounters aren’t that closely fought.

The last time a match between Van Gerwen and Wade was settled by less than two sets was all the way back in 2011, a run that spans 13 games.

With Wade clearly in battling form – he lost the opening six legs in his semi-final with Gary Anderson – the price on him winning with a helping hand from the handicapper really is an early Christmas present.

Over 7.5 total sets @ 1/1

The Dutchman’s scoring power and playing pace means that it can be quite easy for him to steamroller opponents without them getting so much as a look at winning a set.

That was the case against Stehphen Bunting in Van Gerwen’s semi-final, as he romped to a 4-0 victory, however, he’s never managed to do that against Wade.

There’s only ever been one “win-to-nil” in the pair’s history of playing each other and that was by Wade back in 2007.

In all of Mighty Mike’s victories over The Machine, Wade has managed to have his share of the sets. A game that goes over 7.5 in Dublin looks a certainty.

Over 12.5 180s in the match @ 10/11

With the match looking set to last a while, backing the overs in the 180s market is an equally wise move.

Wade isn’t known to pack too much of a scoring punch compared to his Dutch rival, but he still managed to fire in seven maximums in his come-from-behind win last time out.

Van Gerwen’s ability to tickle the lipstick is common knowledge however and his five 180s against Bunting were only stunted by the game’s lack of competition.

All Odds and Markets are correct as of the date of publishing.

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Matt Wiggins

No idyllic sound comes close to leather on willow for Matt, whose previous experience includes stints with Spin Magazine and Surrey County Cricket Club. It's not just cricket that interests him though, with football, golf, tennis and any American sport not played on ice all high on his list of favourites.