World Darts Championship: Lewis and Anderson are looking sharp
With the World Darts Championship finals fast approaching, the usual suspects lead the betting in the market for outright tournament winner.
Phil ‘The Power’ Taylor is 1/1 to add to his monstrous trophy haul, but he crashed out of this tournament at the quarter-final stage last year to Welshman Mark Webster, who failed to reach the final in the aftermath.
The most serious dangers to Taylor’s chances appear to come in the form of the two men who played out last year’s final, with champion Adrian Lewis looking pretty ruthless of late and Gary Anderson his usual consistent self.
Lewis is 7/1 to claim a second consecutive win at Alexandra Palace, whilst Premier League champion Anderson is slightly longer at 8/1.
Both men have seemingly straightforward ties to kick off their tournament, with ‘Jackpot’ Lewis 1/9 to beat Nigel Heydon, whilst Anderson is 1/20 to dispose of German Jyhan Artut.
Should they build adequate confidence from victory in games like this, you can expect the two to kick on and look legitimate threats to Taylor’s quest for victory.
It is 12/1 that the two meet in this year’s final for the second year running, whilst a Phil Taylor vs Adrian Lewis clash is 3/1 favourite in the name the finalists market, and a James Wade vs Taylor bout priced at 7/2.
Wade is 9/1 to win the tournament, and his UK Open win earlier in the year showed he has regained some of the form that saw him crowned 2009 Premier League winner, but the World Championship could prove a bridge too far for him at this point of his career.
Amongst non-British competitors in the field, Australian Simon Whitlock appears to be the most accomplished of the foreign challengers, and there should be interest in the 20/1 on offer for the 2010 semi-finalist, whilst popular Dutchman Raymond van Barneveld will attract attention at 25/1.