With the group stage done and dusted, we are approaching the business end of the Grand Slam of Darts in Wolverhampton. And while the majority of the big names made it safely through there was a scalp or two.
Adrian Lewis and Robert Thornton endured a torrid time of things to fall at the first hurdle, while Andy Hamilton and Simon Whitlock also missed out.
And after James Curtis tipped up a winning 2/1 fourfold earlier in the week, we are under pressure to pick out the winners again as we take a look at the day’s last 16 ties.
How about this for a tasty 5/1+ treble?
Taylor loves this event, having won five of the seven renewals and has continued that love affair this time round.
Averaging a whopping 107.1 over his three group games, he made no beans about reaching the knockout stages.
And while Peter Wright reached the World Championship final at the start of the year, a poor showing against Michael Smith, in which he hit just four of his 17 attempts at a double, highlights the lapses he can suffer.
The aforementioned Smith has been somewhat of a revelation in this tournament, recording three upset victories against Brendan Dolan, Simon Whitlock and Peter Wright to reach the last-16 unscathed.
Only three players dropped fewer legs in the earlier stages, and he can power through once again against Christian Kist, who made the most of a misfiring Robert Thornton to reach this stage.
Probably still haunted by the capitulation that cost him a Masters title last month, Mervyn King deserves to take a tournament this year.
He’s playing some decent stuff, having also reached the semi-finals in the European Championships and winning the European Darts Grand Prix, and can run ‘The Flying Scotsman’ close.
Anderson could well come through and triumph, but the man from Suffolk has run him close in recent meetings, and should be backed on the handicap.
All odds and markets correct as of the date of publishing
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