Thursday 12 November 2020

WC race

Alright, Smith got back to back wins, de Sousa made a final and lost a decider (binking that final would have pushed Jose into the top 20 of the FRH rankings and knocked out Adrian Lewis, but there you go), Gabriel Clemens played like a monster until running into a Smith-shaped wall (me having him each way probably had something to do with it, White messed up the first round but both my other tips lost to the eventual finalists, damnit), VVDV had a pretty nice run with a deceptively hard path, Cullen backed up his recent good run with a semi, while lower down, Meikle won his board and should have made the quarters (blew a 5-0 lead!), Barry also won his board and lost a decider in the last 16 as well, not a bad run for Kciuk either. Some shocking early exits, Wright lost in round one to KFL while averaging 107 (in a deciding leg, Kai managed 106 himself), Price got dumped out by Joyce putting in a 106 (who then lost to a 112 from Clemens in the next round), plenty of other huge losing averages - Heta did 105 losing to Smith, Gurney did 104 losing to Dolan, Rydz did 103 losing to Noppert (those last two over 11 legs), even the likes of Noguera and Tabern lost averaging over a ton.

So, worlds race. Let's borrow the Weekly Dartscast Twitter image:

Now this flat out excludes the top 32, but even if de Sousa gets in there (which looks pretty darned likely), Ricky Evans would easily be safe on the Pro Tour. So who's going to force their way in? There's just the three events left, so let's first look to a cut off point from which we think people will be safe. I think that given how much everyone would need to do below him, we should only consider looking from Mike de Decker downwards - Luke Woodhouse, with over a two grand lead with three events to go, would be pretty unlucky to miss out even if he bricked all three events. So let's filter down to all these players here, but we'll exclude Krcmar, Meikle and Ashton as they're already in (from a regional qualifier, the Dev Tour and the women's qualifier respectively), and see what they've done year to date:

This is year to date. What this is showing is that the guys at the top of the list are, oddly, those that are just outside right now, but could easily put something together in order to make a run and maybe sneak in. On the other hand, there's players currently in (Hamilton, Baker, Rodriguez) that haven't really performed that great, and might be in a bit of danger. How about if we drill things down to just after the restart?

This looks really, really bad for Hendo - he only has a 1250 quid buffer to work with, and that could evaporate pretty quickly. He did get a win on Tuesday by getting for all intents and purposes a bye against Barrie Bates (average - 64), but only took two legs off Ratajski and Kciuk since then. Still doesn't look convincing for Baker and Rodriguez, but they are the sorts of players that can put in a good hour or so and look unbeatable, and Rowby at least has shown some signs fairly recently, so there is at least that in his favour. Similarly at the top, Boulton ought to be able to force his way in, Rydz could get there with one good run and a couple of other cashes, Pipe, Klaasen and Mitchell are in similar spots, while West looks like he's doing enough to hold on, with a grand and a half lead it shouldn't take much to make himself safe. Leung's on the bubble, but if he can do what he did yesterday often enough, there's plenty of hope (and, with the Asian qualification situation still up in the air, maybe there's some sort of backdoor if he misses out?), while two players in the upper-middle of the pack who are right on the borderline are the Scottish pair of Murray and Borland - I'd fancy them to do enough to get over the line. Murray, in particular, is in the top 8 of performances of these just from the last two days, so could nick something more often than not.

I won't post up the full last two days, as it'd become problematic in terms of sample size, but there's a few players that might have difficulties. Hendo again is the main one, but Whitehead and Klaasen haven't really shown enough, and Webster's only in the middle of the pack, not exactly inspiring confidence.

We've got the draw coming up in about half an hour, that should hopefully give a bit more insight, and hopefully this'll give info as to what to watch for. 

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