It has been a thrilling tournament to date and it’s unlikely that the excitement will stop as the World Darts Championship enters its semi-final stage.
The final four are Nathan Aspinall, Michael van Gerwen, Gerwyn Price and Peter Wright who, between them, have taken 25 titles this season. Van Gerwen is unsurprisingly the outright odds on favourite, having scooped 14 of those 25 titles, but we will still have a couple of fantastic matches on our hands.
Despite a spate of early surprise exits, there are still four seeds in the semi-finals, with numbers one, three, seven and 12 making the cut. Our darts betting expert has picked out some top tips ahead of Monday evening.
1st Semi-final Winner – Gerwyn Price – 8/13
2nd Semi-final Winner – Michael van Gerwen – 1/6
Overall winner – Michael van Gerwen – 1/2
Michael van Gerwen v Nathan Aspinall
It’s a daunting match-up for Nathan Aspinall as he must take down the defending champion and world number one Michael van Gerwen if he is to have a chance of lifting the Sid Waddell Trophy.
There’s no denying Aspinall’s upward trajectory in the game and he is certainly one to be very wary of in the years to come. An endearing player, he wears his heart on his sleeve and you can see just what it means to him after each win on the Alexandra Palace stage. Dimitri van den Bergh conjured up a fantastic come back to give the ‘Asp’ a scare, with the Englishman’s finishing going out the window at times.
That finishing and the way his trademark heavy scoring abandoned him for a while is what makes it even harder to look past Mighty Mike here. The Dutchman doesn’t always play the most exciting game, with his performance against Darius Labanauskas an example.
That said, what appeared underwhelming in fact produced a 99.5 average and a decent 45 per cent success rate on the doubles. Conceding three sets seems like a concern but in reality, it’s because he sets the bar so very high. There’s little reason to doubt him throwing his way to a place in the final.
MVG highest checkout of over 136.5 can also be backed at 5/6.
Peter Wright v Gerwyn Price
It may not be the main draw of the evening but this is still a match-up worthy of a semi-final, with both producing fantastic displays in the previous round.
Glen Durrant took Gerwyn Price all the way to the wire in the first set but after losing one, the Welshman ran away with it. His impressive performance was underlined by an average just shy of a ton and, despite facing his first World Darts Championship semi-final, there’s little to suggest that the pressure will get to him.
His recent experiences in the final stages of majors showed us just what a confident player he is. The only thing that could prove the Iceman’s undoing is his tendency towards the inconsistent but if he addresses that here then it’s his place in the final to lose.
A finalist six years ago, Peter Wright will not be dismayed by his opponent, even if Price racks up an early advantage because he loves the long game. Though there are more accomplished maximum-hitters on the Tour, Wright amassed an impressive 12 on the way to a 5-3 win. Only one match average of the tournament was better than his 105.86, and that was over eight sets. The Scot will be looking to take the title this time but it’s not going to be easy, particularly if Price is in his unforgiving form.
Under 9.5 sets is available at 4/5.
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