Saturday, 19 September 2020

What did we learn from day 1 of the World Series

As you all know, I don't put a great deal of emphasis on non-ranked events, not including them in my data sets and rarely covering them at all. However, with the limited amount of actual darts we have on, and with it being the return of darts with a crowd, I think it's worth having a quick scan through what we have seen.

Ward/Labanauskas - Not a lot to say here. Ward was pretty good in the two legs he won, but not outside of them. Labanauskas was probably a little bit better than the stats suggest, but not a huge amount, he was OK but that's about it. Hard to see how he comes close to Aspinall today.

White/Heta - Doesn't look great on the averages, but they missed a lot of doubles, Heta in particular, which dragged down the averages a fair bit. That Damon's able to take out someone of the quality of White isn't a shock, but it's useful in that it's more evidence of what he can do against the big names. Wright may be a different story.

Harris/Chisnall - Dave just couldn't score. Simple as that. Harris did what he needed to do, showed some flashes with a nice 11 darter to open the 2-0 lead, and in Gurney he's easily got the best draw, but he's going to need to keep up that 6/10 checkout rate you feel.

van der Voort/Cullen - Wow, Cullen regressed a lot in the space of a few days. He was looking really good in the Autumn Series, but he either couldn't score, or when he could score, he couldn't hit doubles. Vincent was fine, there was the one comedy leg where it went to 21 darts, but that's it. Could give Price a bit of a run for his money, Gerwyn should be strong enough, we don't bet on unranked events, but there's no real handicap angle we can take here.

Smith/Sherrock - Odd one. Jeff came from a huge deficit here, once he found his scoring which looked quite lacking early, as for Fallon, that performance was streaky as anything. Mix of couldn't hit anything and then finding herself on 60 and 81 after nine and cleaning up at others. Lack of big combination finishes, looking back to nine months ago, maybe the 120 in leg 7, the 108 the leg after, the 121 the leg after that, who knows. In two of those, she even came back to the oche and couldn't clean up. While Fallon's propensity to hit three dart outs at the worlds seemed unsustainable, she still should be cleaning up at least one of those. Can't see Wade having any trouble with Smith.

Ratajski/Suljovic - Good standard. Real good standard, not that we expected anything else. Maybe Mensur should have taken this one, going 3/12 on doubles wasn't great, and he was missing in bunches in the last two legs. Grab those and it's 5-4 and he'll have the darts for the match. Ratajski should be a favourite against Smith.

Durrant/van den Bergh - This looked like the old Dimitri where he has games where he can't do much of anything, or at least is wildly inconsistent. Leg by leg - still needing 100+ after 15. 11 darter. Misses eight darts at double. Still needing 56 after 15. Fairly standard six visit hold. Can't do much against a Durrant 13 darter, but a rare counting error if dartsdata is right? He's not usually that sloppy to leave 165. In the remainder, he just couldn't score heavily enough. Glen was good. Every leg but one was in five visits, can't complain with that.

Whitlock/Beaton - Strange to see both averaging below 90, Whitlock significantly so (would have guessed the other way around on form), when they're a combined 55% on doubles. Pretty obvious - they couldn't hit trebles, far too many 60, 59-type visits, Whitlock in particular having far too many visits with a stray dart. Cross isn't the worst draw for Steve but he'll have to pick his scoring up a bit.

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