This week the players head across the Irish Sea to Belfast’s SSE Arena for another night of first-class, fast-paced darting action.
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We are only two weeks in, but the player of the tournament so far is Jonny Clayton, who has made two out of two finals, winning the second one, after finishing as the runner-up a week earlier in his native Wales.
This has put the Ferret at the top of the table and the reigning champion has now been installed as the bet365 darts betting outright favourite at 11/4.
But what can we expect from night three in Northern Ireland and what are our favorite darts betting tips of the evening?
Looking for a report and preview on another night from the Darts Premier League? Check below…
Michael Smith V Gerwyn Price
The night gets underway with Michael Smith and Gerwyn Price.
Both players were hotly tipped to enjoy a good Premier League campaign but have so far been massively underwhelmed.
In Price’s case, he’s to the point where his number one ranking is under serious threat from Peter Wright, winner of week one, but who himself flopped out in last week’s first match against Michael van Gerwen.
Smith is winless so far after being falling at the first hurdle in both Cardiff and Liverpool against Peter Wright and Jonny Clayton respectively.
The Iceman, on the other hand, has at least registered his first points on the board after making it through to the semi-finals last week where he eventually lost out to Joe Cullen.
With his number one spot on the line, and looking for some Ally Pally revenge on the Bully Boy, you really feel like the Welshman, whose 30% finishing rate is the lowest of the eight competitors, should finally kick into gear this week after a poor start to the year.
Surely Price must win this one.
Joe Cullen v Michael van Gerwen
Last week’s runner-up, Joe Cullen is looking to continue his incredible winning run when he steps out against five-time Premier League champion Michael van Gerwen.
The Masters champion put aside his night one debut defeat to comfortably defeat both James Wade and Gerwyn Price in Liverpool before Jonny Clayton proved a match too many.
The Rockstar will now look to go one better in Belfast.
It was the Yorkshireman that prevailed the last time these two met when he beat MVG 10-7 in last month’s Masters.
Mighty Mike will be out to correct that and build on his solitary semi-final appearance so far.
The world number three thrashed Wright 6-1 in last week’s quarter-finals courtesy of a 103 average before blowing a 4-1 lead to Jonny Clayton in what ended up being a 6-4 defeat where the Dutchman posted an average of 105.
Such an average might not have been enough to topple the Ferret but it could be enough to see off Cullen here.
Gary Anderson v Peter Wright
It’s an all Scottish affair for the night’s third match where multiple World Champions Peter Wright and Gary Anderson go toe to toe for the third time this year.
The first of those came at the World Championships where Snakebite produced a 104 average and a tourney record 24 180s to deny his World Cup of Darts winning partner back-to-back appearances in the final at Ally Pally.
The pair met again a fortnight ago in Cardiff when the world number two came out on top again on a night he would go on to win.
Since then, Wright’s form has dipped a little and he was out first-time last week narrowly avoiding a whitewash at the hands of Michael van Gerwen, something he couldn’t avoid over the weekend at the hands of Ryan Joyce on the ProTour.
That said, no one flip-flops their form as much as Peter Wright, so we have to wait and which version of snakebite shows up in Belfast.
Anderson is one of four best darts players who are all tied on two points and is looking to recover from last week’s first-round dismissal at the hands of Gerwyn Price, in which the Flying Scotsman could only post an average of 90.
Depending almost entirely on Wright’s form, it is a tough one to call but given how poor he was last year, we can only hope for Wright to bring his A-game and progress through to the semi-finals.
James Wade v Jonny Clayton
The quarter-finals conclude with James Wade facing off against league leader Jonny Clayton, who came out on top in Liverpool after a memorable 6-4 win over Joe Cullen in the final.
Clayton leads the way in the table on eight points and will be rightly confident of building on that against The Machine, who was shot down 6-3 by Cullen in their first-round match last week.
With six points currently separating the two players, Wade will be hoping to put more points on the board in order to avoid losing ground on those above him.
His solitary two points came at the expense of Gerwyn Price on opening night, but his tournament average of 89.4 is the lowest in the entire field. He will need to improve upon this if he is to stand a chance against The Ferret, who looks like a certain winner in the last quarter-final of the night.
Given Gerwyn Price’s side of the draw and the form of the Ferret, it is easy to see an all Welsh final where the Iceman can finally get back into his groove.
BET365 DARTS BETTING PRICES
Michael Smith (13/10) V (8/13) Gerwyn Price
Joe Cullen (6/5) V (4/6) Michael van Gerwen
Gary Anderson (7/4) v (4/9) Peter Wright
James Wade (11/5) v (4/11) Jonny Clayton
PREMIER LEAGUE OF DARTS TABLE
|Player||Nights Won||Matches Won||Leg Difference||Points|
|Michael van Gerwen||0||1||1||2|
QUICK GLANCE AT THE DARTS PREMIER LEAGUE WEEK 3
Venue: SSE Arena, Belfast
Format: Best of 11 legs (first to six)
Current Champion: Jonny Clayton
Where To Watch: Sky Sports Main Event HD & Sky Sports Arena HD
When To Watch: 19:00 UK