Tuesday 30 November 2021

Rapid WC thoughts

Just going to scroll down the draw and give thoughts:

- Good draw for Edhouse. Will be one and done, but that'll put him above Mansell and he'll lose his card as a result.
- Beaton/Sherrock will be an interesting crowd reaction. Price/Sherrock, if she gets that far (she should beat Steve, Huybrechts she'd probably be a small dog) would be really interesting.
- That's a pretty awful draw for Jeff Smith. Ross against Bunting would be a tough one to call.
- Wattimena/Koltsov could go either way. Jermaine's not exactly in red hot form and Boris has been fairly quiet this year. DvD can't complain about this draw.
- Not a bad draw for Lewy Williams really. I don't know too much about Shibata, and Clemens can certainly be beaten.
- Smith/Meulenkamp/Ashton seems routine, while O'Connor against Lauby could be spicy with the winner getting an extremely winnable second round opponent in Durrant.
- Kuivenhoven's got a good chance to climb the rankings here. That's not a bad opponent and if he's on his game then he might give Wade a few problems.
- Hunt/Krcmar is a potential contender for tie of the round. Boris looked really good yesterday, while Adam hasn't really kicked on after a very nice 2020, Vincent in round two isn't that tough of an ask for either of them.
- Evetts and Williams might go all the way, would find it hard to pick a winner. Cullen ought not to have too much trouble though.
- Kleermaker can't complain with getting John Michael. John can occasionally hit a decent leg, but sustaining anything over a five set match against a competent opponent seems too much. Whitlock would probably be a coinflip.
- Hempel against Schindler? Fuck right off. Then the winner gets Dimitri to add insult to injury. Probably the clear tie of round one.
- Hughes has got to be fairly happy with getting Smith and then Petersen. Should allow him to set a platform to climb back up towards the top 32 following the Prague win drop off.
- Lennon/Razma might be a sneakily good tie. Depends which Madars turns up, he still is a bit too up and down. Ratajski should be too solid for either though.
- Can't help but think Benecky might be a bit out of his depth against Joyce. Shame this isn't Sedlacek, as that might be a bit more competitive, and that'd mean he wouldn't need to go back to Q-School.
- Meikle/Schmutzler is going to be interesting. No idea how Fabian will do on a big stage, and Meikle's hitting form just at the right time. Wright in round two is obviously going to be tough, but nicking a set wouldn't be out of the question.
- Woodhouse/Wilson won't be a bad game. James, as mentioned below, is playing sneakily good darts, Luke hasn't really progressed as he would have like but still has a good game. Heta should handle either but neither would be drawing dead.
- Borland and Brooks is going to be a tricky one to call, William's steadily competent and Bradley has got a lot better in recent months. Searle should wipe the floor with either though.
- Interested to see what Jason Heaver can do in a longer form game. Probably the real surprise of the Pro Tour field. Similar with Rodriguez, that qualifier wasn't easy and had a lot of known games, so he shouldn't be a mug at all. Noppert won't hate the draw though.
- Lowe/Larsson doesn't seem overly inspriring, and the next round against de Sousa seems the same.
- Soutar will be fairly happy with drawing Portela, whose Challenge Tour performances haven't been great, and I don't think he'll hate having drawn Suljovic, who, after looking like he'd turned a corner in recent months, dropped an absolute stinker at Minehead.
- Murnan against Lim is going to be intriguing. Joe was red hot early in the season but has slid back a bit, while Paul is Paul. Aspinall shouldn't be too worried whoever he gets.
- Rydz might be the one player in the first round draw everyone wanted to avoid, cannot see Yamada repeating what he did two years ago and making round two. Dolan against Rydz is going to be too close to call.
- Barstow, Norman and van Gerwen doesn't excite me in the slightest.
- However, should Rusty get past Ben Robb which I think he will, him against Dobey could be explosive.
- Labanauskas ought to handle Losper (assuming there's no restriction bullshit given where he's going to be flying from) and with Chisnall having indifferent form in 2021, might be a sneaky pick to reach round 3.
- Rowby, Kenny, Humphries seems a bit of a dull section. Should be a straightforward Rodriguez then Luke.
- Lewis/Campbell isn't a bad tie. Adie ought to take it but we know Matt can cause lots of players trouble. A possible world final rematch against Gary Anderson would be a highlight of round two for sure.
- Mitchell against Landman has a real old school BDO feel about it. Scott's done well this year but Chris obviously has the talent to trouble him having come through probably the toughest qualifier there is. Ian White might be given some problems in round two, but I'd back him to solve them.
- Barney against Ilagan is going to be fun. The question is how much decent match practice Lourence will have been able to get. Cross in round two can't be particularly pleased with how this draw turned out.
- Finally, Evans against Kumar could be anything. We don't know where Nitin's game is really at, and we do know that Ricky's game is a fair bit off where it could be. Daryl Gurney is going to be liking things whichever way they turn out.

Monday 29 November 2021

Pre-worlds FRH rankings

Congrats to Peter, solid final performance to get over the line, pity for Ryan but that performance (and the prize money) is going to push him well up towards the top sixteen and should set him up very nicely for 2022.

Tour card holder just started, Krcmar throwing some filth, picked out Wilson, Kcuik and Waites as who I thought would get through but Boris was certainly very much on the radar and will take some stopping playing like that. Sedlacek already down unfortunately.

So, new FRH rankings:

1 Gerwyn Price
2 Peter Wright
3 Michael van Gerwen
4 James Wade
5 Jonny Clayton
6 Jose de Sousa
7 Rob Cross
8 Dimitri van den Bergh
9 Gary Anderson (UP 1)
10 Michael Smith (DOWN 1)
11 Krzysztof Ratajski
12 Joe Cullen
13 Ryan Searle (UP 6)
14 Dave Chisnall (DOWN 1)
15 Nathan Aspinall (DOWN 1)
16 Dirk van Duijvenbode (DOWN 1)
17 Stephen Bunting (DOWN 1)
18 Danny Noppert (DOWN 1)
19 Brendan Dolan (NEW)
20 Luke Humphries (DOWN 2)

Outside of Searle's obvious huge jump, the only chances are that Ando's now about 1250 points ahead of Smith on account of getting a round further (both are within 10k of Dimitri so all of 8-10 are very close), while Dolan's semi gets him back into the top 20 after hovering in the lower ends of the top 32 for quite some time following his return to form in the past years, well deserved. King is the player to drop out but remains 21st. Lower down, plenty of players in that lower end of the top 32 went out first round or were one and done, so Gurney jumps back up to 23, Heta's in the top 25, van dee Voort was in the top 30 anyway and a bit of a gap from 30th upwards means he only actually climbed the one place, while O'Connor is back in the top 40. None of these rankings include worlds money but these are all seeded so nothing would change.

That marks the end of another betting season as well - it is by far the lowest volume season entirely down to the lack of the European Tour, but in terms of ROI it is easily the best. I'm in two minds whether that is a good thing - I've noticed in a lot of places the lines simply seem to be closer to where I'm projecting, but I do wonder if I am being too cautious with some marginal plays and whether I should go for more volume, take a lower ROI but make more money because we're putting more in play. I suppose what I could always do is just lower the betting sizes more often than I do and use the 0.1 unit, which I normally only consider on long shot punts, on marginal plays. It's not going to make much, but it's kind of the opposite of what I do when there is a large odds-on favourite who is being undervalued.

Will also list you the top 32 players I have in my rankings this season on basis of overall turn-based average in order. Removing anyone with less than 100 legs. It's van Gerwen, Price, Wright, de Sousa, Clayton, Dobey, Ratajski, van den Bergh - Noppert, van Duijvenbode, M Smith, Cross, Aspinall, Searle, Heta, Humphries - Schindler, Dolan, Cullen, Wade, van Barneveld, R Smith, Rydz, Chisnall - White, Gurney, King, Anderson, Soutar, Wilson, Lewis, Hempel. Whose inclusion/exclusion surprises you?

Saturday 27 November 2021

PC quarters

Hope people were able to get the Searle tip in time, that mitigated somewhat of the damage of a fairly poor second round, Heta cruised in and I really should have thought about going heavier, but that would have been somewhat rash so no issues there. Looking back at what I did go for, Lewis had the darts in the decider so I'm fine with that, Meikle just forgot how to score, Schinder I don't think we can fault, Gerwyn just put in an unplayable performance, Barney just missed a couple of tiny chances in a close game. No regrets with the process, but looking at the three players in round two that I was marginal on as to whether to fire (Cross, Gurney, Noppert), they all won, so maybe I'm being a bit overly cautious in recommending plays. Maybe something to go back on and revisit, although I'm probably just going back in words and unless I've quoted the percentage my model has, the actual odds at the time and the reasoning as to why I didn't go for it, it may just end up being a whole bunch of noise.

Four quarters and we've got a few interesting names in there right now, including arguably the two best players running into each other.

Gurney/Searle - I've actually been pretty impressed with Daryl to be honest. He's needed a run and he's played extremely competently, and if Searle puts together a bit of an iffy display like he did in the first two rounds (not so much against Cross, he was fine in that one), he might not get away with it. I think 60/40 Searle, the market has it a touch closer which given how they have played this week, seems fine. Certainly not enough edge to be jumping on Ryan.

Clayton/van der Voort - Jonny got pushed all the way by Luke Humphries and survived multiple match darts after summarily dismissing Mitchell, while Vincent was a train against Noppert, every single leg he won being in five visits, which followed up a nervy encounter against Boulton which could have gone either way. This might be a step too far for Vinny, I've got it 70/30 which is actually slightly closer than the market which is saying 3/1 on VVDV, so definitely don't just lump on Clayton thinking that it's value. Not going to recommend the other way, although if it drifts to 7/2 or greater I wouldn't hate a tiny stab.

de Sousa/Dolan - Jose probably should have lost against Darius, the Lithuanian ace had six from 164 and could only generate one match dart which he obviously missed, and he wasn't particularly on top form against O'Connor either, so maybe it's not quite there for de Sousa, although he won't be complaining. Brendan got the scalp of Price, mostly just taking advantage of a dumpster fire section of legs to get him the edge then holding out, having earlier easily despatched Ritchie Edhouse. Market has this really close rating Brendan at better than 60/40, which seems a touch of an overreaction and nearly cause to go the other way and take de Sousa, who I am seeing as having better than two in three chances, but only just. I would probably jump all over 4/6, it's very marginal.

van Gerwen/Wright - Mentioned the MvG/RvB game, he was fine, he wasn't at his best against Gary and he seems to have been having a bit of a cry about the conditions, it is what it is and it's the same for both players. It'll look like sour grapes, but bitch about it after you've lost, don't give your opponent ammunition, Peter doesn't exactly need it. He was consistent enough against Heta to not let an early 3-0 lead escalate much further and he clawed it back after getting away with one against Adie. I'm going to go with the 0.25u Wright 9/5 which is available on Betfair, I think he's got around a 42% chance and with MvG's mindset seemingly not being there, I think it's worth pushing the boat out on this one.

That's your lot - I'm at the Blades game tomorrow so I very much doubt I get any tips up for the semis and finals. Be back probably Monday for FRH rankings and then instant worlds draw reactions.

Only last 16 tip

Taking the 7/5 that you can get on Unibet on Ryan Searle against Cross, that's it

Round 2 tips

Let's blast through these quickly:

Boulton/van der Voort - Line looks perfectly fine. Andy probably looked slightly better and he has the consistency edge, but 6/5 with a 44% chance, no thanks.

Rydz/Wade - Think the market's just about adapted enough to how good Callan is at this stage. 11/8 still doesn't look quite short enough, but it's short enough that we can't punt. Extremely live dog, but he'd need to be the favourite before we start really thinking about 11/8 as value. Concern that Callan wasn't tested yesterday, but then again James wasn't either.

Cross/Aspinall - Hmm, the market has it even? Can we go with Cross? It's really, really close. If we could see evens and it was a vigless market then I'd probably go with it. Both played solid and weren't really pressured yesterday, both are trending up after mediocre first halves of the season. Will pass and probably regret it.

Searle/Joyce - Market's got Searle as close to a 2/1 favourite. I've got him slightly more, not enough to seriously consider. Searle was merely competent and likely a bit lucky to advance, albeit Whitlock wasn't great, Joyce was probably slightly better. Can pass this one.

Smith/Gurney - Michael didn't really need to get out of second gear to beat Borland, seem to remember William missed a few doubles that could have made it more interesting. Gurney was fine against Soots, albeit lacking in fifteen darters a touch. Seems about 65/35 in the market, I think we can at least think about Gurney here who has course and distance. If he'd shown something a bit more yesterday and/or had better recent form relative to Smith I'd have thought about it more.

Meikle/Anderson - Game of the year contender that one of Ryan's yesterday. Real pressure to retain his card and he gets home. Gary really should have been out but for finding his game just in time, coupled with Bunting collapsing a bit. 0.25u Meikle 11/5, there is a big consistency issue but that's a huge price when the projections give it as it is with Meikle near to level, especially having just hit the performance of his life to add huge relief in terms of tour card retention chances.

Dolan/Edhouse - Big scalp for Ritchie to dump Chizzy out, didn't play great and Dave really should have got some breaks but couldn't manage it. Brendan looked extremely solid in putting out Chas Barstow and enters as better than a 1/2 favourite. This does seem like a two in three match for Brendan so the line is close enough to not bet.

Wright/Lewis - Peter was pushed real hard by Keane Barry and on another day he could easily have gone out, Adie was getting some plaudits for his performance against Huybrechts, which was a bit better than he has been playing of late, but he was kind of bailed by a couple of big outs with Kim waiting. Adie seems live enough in this one to take a shot, 0.25u Lewis 9/4, he's just over 40% as I see it so we'll take the stab.

Heta/Clemens - Gabriel was looking very comfortable early against Beaton but got dragged into a decider, while Damon was fine against Lennon without ever really hitting the heights he can do. Why this is so close in the market I have no idea, 0.25u Heta 3/4, he should be a lot closer to 1/2 really.

van Gerwen/Barneveld - Michael did what he needed to against Kevin Doets, steady five visit kills doing the job. Barney looked the best he's done for a while in seeing off the decent challenge that was Maik Kuivenhoven. Do I want to take 3/1? I think I'll go small, 0.1u van Barneveld 3/1, if he'd looked iffy in the first round and scraped through I'd probably decline but there's enough projection edge coupled with a good first round win to want to punt it.

Price/Schindler - Gerwyn looked bloody ordinary against Jason Lowe who, if he'd pinned some chances he had, could easily have been here. Martin dumped Ian White out with a good performance. This is a trivial small punt at the line it is, 0.1u Schindler 7/2, he won this one literally last week.

Smith/Humphries - I wouldn't mind watching this one, this should be dynamite. Smith looked fantastic in eliminating Rusty, while Luke needed to come from behind against Jason Heaver but got the job done in the end with a much better second half of the game. Market thinks it's close with Luke having the slightly better chances, that seems close enough to my opinion as well.

Clayton/Mitchell - Scott was first on yesterday, Jonny last. Nice fair scheduling from the PDC there. Scott was pushed all the way by Kleermaker, only really having the three terrible legs and looking very competent outside of those. Fortunately he won the last one. Clayton didn't look great against Tabern and was another big Welsh name who could have been out if his opponent had taken the chances presented to him. Jonny's probably a little bit too short in the market but I'd need more than 10/3 before I'd start thinking about a Scotty Dog flier. Call me when it's 4/1.

O'Connor/Ratajski - Willie survived a match dart against Chris Dobey in a high quality affair, while Krzysztof had close to a free win against Meulenkamp. If Willie repeats his form from yesterday then he's in with a chance but being just longer than 2/1 appears a fair assessment.

van den Bergh/Noppert - Dimitri and Danny both had wins that could probably be described as routine, Madars put up a little bit of resistance from 4-1 with the pressure off, Rowby also nicked a couple of legs after going down huge but these were more gifts from Noppert really. Danny is 6/4 which is in the ballpark of thinking about the punt, but his recent decent TV performances have kind of derailed the Noppert value train.

de Sousa/Labanauskas - Darius was excellent in dropping Mervyn King out who wasn't playing badly at all, another great game from board two that I'll need to catch up on. Jose kind of let Petersen back into the game from a won position but did get over the line yesterday, will need to be a bit more clinical today but he almost certainly will be. Jose being close to a 1/3 favourite appears perfectly correct to me.

So that's it. Two long small punt fliers, two standard dog plays and then Damon as a small favourite which should be larger.

Friday 26 November 2021

Players Championship Saturday

I will post the bets in the morning, I would imagine that lines are out already but will wait until then until they're all going to be there for sure. Will post percentages for the second round as well as conditional lines for the last sixteen given I may not be able to update before then in the event I go to a match tomorrow. Decent enough series today, picked up half a unit which would have been more if Dobey hadn't missed a match dart (and especially if Beaton could have found a twelve in the decider from nowhere). Rusty and Jermaine didn't really do much but we expect that to happen a fair bit of the time. Let's go:

de Sousa - 71% Labanauskas, 80% O'Connor, 59% Ratajski
Labanauskas - 29% de Sousa, 56% O'Connor, 30% Ratajski
O'Connor - 31% Ratajski, 20% de Sousa, 44% Labanauskas
Ratajski - 69% O'Connor, 41% de Sousa, 70% Labanauskas

Price - 68% Schindler, 75% Dolan, 88% Edhouse
Schindler - 32% Price, 52% Dolan, 71% Edhouse
Dolan - 66% Edhouse, 25% Price, 48% Schindler
Edhouse - 34% Dolan, 12% Price, 29% Schindler

Smith - 56% Gurney, 60% Rydz, 56% Wade
Gurney - 44% Smith, 52% Rydz, 49% Wade
Rydz - 47% Wade, 40% Smith, 48% Gurney
Wade - 53% Rydz, 44% Smith, 51% Gurney

Searle - 69% Joyce, 58% Cross, 52% Aspinall
Joyce - 31% Searle, 32% Cross, 26% Aspinall
Cross - 43% Aspinall, 42% Searle, 68% Joyce
Aspinall - 57% Cross, 48% Searle, 74% Joyce

Wright - 59% Lewis, 59% Heta, 76% Clemens
Lewis - 41% Wright, 47% Heta, 65% Clemens
Heta - 65% Clemens, 41% Wright, 53% Lewis
Clemens - 35% Heta, 24% Wright, 35% Lewis

van Gerwen - 66% van Barneveld, 80% Meikle, 77% Anderson
van Barneveld - 34% van Gerwen, 61% Meikle, 58% Anderson
Meikle - 48% Anderson, 20% van Gerwen, 39% van Barneveld
Anderson - 52% Meikle, 23% van Gerwen, 42% van Barneveld

Clayton - 71% Mitchell, 62% Smith, 68% Humphries
Mitchell - 29% Clayton, 33% Smith, 41% Humphries
Smith - 56% Humphries, 38% Clayton, 67% Mitchell
Humphries - 44% Smith, 32% Clayton, 59% Mitchell

Boulton - 44% van der Voort, 21% van den Bergh, 24% Noppert
van der Voort - 56% Boulton, 27% van den Bergh, 32% Noppert
van den Bergh - 54% Noppert, 79% Boulton, 73% van der Voort
Noppert - 46% van den Bergh, 76% Boulton, 68% van der Voort

Thursday 25 November 2021

PC Finals tips - section four

Let's get this done

Clayton/Tabern - What Jonny's done this season is phenomenal, lifting himself into the top 5 players in the world by whatever metric you want to use. As such, he's rightly a prohibitive favourite against Tabern, who's one of the last players in the field with less than a 20% chance of winning this one. 2/11 Clayton seems fine, actually a tiny arb as a lot of bookies have him much shorter.

Mitchell/Kleermaker - Scott's done well to get into the top half of the seeds for this, multiple early quarter finals being a pretty nice haul for the veteran, who comes up against Kleermaker, who did make it all the way to a final earlier in the season which helped him to make the Grand Prix. Market looks good to me, Scott's a tiny favourite whichever way you look at it, might actually be a touch underrated with Martijn having some consistency issues.

Smith/Rodriguez - Ross against Rusty to avoid any doubt, Smudger's managed a first bink this season as well as another final to end in the top 16 seeds for the season. Rusty's one of a few players who have come from the Q-School top up spots to really make a mark, and will be a dangerous opponent. Market has Ross as a surprisingly short favourite at 1/3, while I think Rusty has 35% so we'll take a stab, 0.25u Rodriguez 13/5, he even has the consistency advantage.

Humprhies/Heaver - Luke's continued to grow his game, making a major final, still waiting for a first bink though. Jason's had a very solid first season on the PDC tour without really making any headlines, one semi final as well as multiple board wins getting him here which I think he'll be happy with. Luke's going to be the big favourite here and the market's not giving Jason more than a 25% shot, maybe that's slightly harsh but we're not going to bet against Humphries here. Sub-89 scoring isn't going to cut it often enough for my liking.

Cullen/Boulton - Joe continues to play well, getting slightly deeper into big comps, getting a bink, but yet to make that huge breakthrough that's going to push him much higher than the lower reaches of the top 16. Andy has not had a bad season at all and is playing well enough that he should take this a little bit more than one in three, but has just been a bit unfortunate with results outside of one semi and he is currently not in the worlds - but should be among the favourites for the PDPA qualifier. Market is overrating Cullen enough that we can punt, 0.25u Boulton 12/5, 37% when he only needs to win 30% to break even looks alright to me.

van der Voort/Klaasen - Fuck the rules that's taken Hughes out of this one. Still, it's a backdoor out for Jelle who needs some sort of result over the next week to have a chance of saving his card, and a win here against Vincent would help. VVDV has one semi this season but is more a consistent board winner, accumulating more than anything. Jelle's actually quite close in the projections, it's 55/45 to Vincent, who's 4/6 in the market, so not really enough value to punt on Klaasen.

van den Bergh/Razma - Dimitri will be looking to get some results here after having been screwed out of the Grand Slam, which won't cost him worlds seeding but it's a chance to bink another major and as someone playing at a level who can do that, it's got to sting. Madars has been alright, but not at Dimitri's level and it's really not close. 80/20 Dimitri for me, bookies have it slightly closer but not quite enough to start betting on the Belgian.

Noppert/Rodriguez - Final game gives us Danny, who had a big Grand Prix run which has lost much of the value that he offered in our Circle of Betting Trust, and Rowby, who like his brother has been taking great advantage of backup chances given and really making an impression on the tour. Danny should be comfortable here, and should win this more than 60% - market thinks a bit more than that, but not enough disparity to go on Rowby really.

So that's the lot, another two bets to add, good luck everyone.

PC Finals tips - section three

Bit late, but in time to punt

Wright/Barry - Good opportunity for Keane here to make a statement, who's done well in a first full season on tour but lacks the real scoring power to make an impact at the top level right now, which means it's a bit unfortunate that he faces Wright here who's looking decent enough. Barry probably has close to a one in four shot, which unfortunately for us punters is right where the line is set.

Lewis/Huybrechts - Adie continues to slide down the rankings but is doing enough to scrape into the top 32 of the seeds, primarily from one final and not much else. Kim's had kind of the same run in the past (albeit without the extreme heights of Lewis), and is upticking trying to make his own way back to the top 32. Market has it as a flip which looks spot on, the model gives it not even 51/49 in favour of Lewis and less than two tenths of a point separate them in season long scoring. No bet.

Heta/Lennon - Damon has backed up a first good season with another solid one, easily in the top sixteen for scoring and getting a couple of finals under his belt, albeit not quite getting over the line in them. Steve hasn't played too badly, scoring nearer to 91 than 90 for the year, but has come up awfully dry in terms of results after an early four event run of board wins. Market thinks Heta takes two in three, which I think it being a little bit unkind on Lennon, he doesn't have the win percentage to consider a bet at 2/1 (he's south of 40% which is roughly where I'd start looking), but Damon isn't as much of a sure shot as the market indicates.

Clemens/Beaton - Gabriel is still on the lookout for a first tour win, he's made another final and reached a couple of semis but is still waiting, maybe the best on the tour without a title (although I will entertain arguments that he's not even the best German without a title right now). Steve continues to do enough to get into the worlds, although you wonder for how much longer, he's barely scoring 89, is easily gone from the FRH top 50 and is more miss than hit in the second half of the season. Gabriel is a big favourite here at around the 70/30 mark, which I think is a bit too much really. Steve won't give up too much and is rated to win over 40%, and has the better consistency. I think we can take a stab here, 0.25u Beaton 12/5

van Gerwen/Doets - Michael has the highest scoring in the world by nearly half a point, Price is then nearly a full point (0.99 lol) ahead of anyone else. He's not won much at all, but he is still that good. So it's quite some story for Kevin to have done what he's done this season and get the chance to play here, although he's just got screwed in terms of the worlds as more or less last man out right now. 1/5 would probably be right here, van Gerwen's actually 1/7 but with the vig we can't possibly consider tipping Kevin to cause a monumental upset.

van Barneveld/Kuivenhoven - The draw is such that we're guaranteed one Dutchman in the last sixteen, and the possibility of an MvG/RvB second round, which'd be mouthwatering. Raymond obviously binked early in the season, but I don't recall seeing any mention of him at all since then outside of last week's Slam, where he was OK but that's about it. Maik seems a bit outclassed here, several points on scoring behind RvB and 70/30 in the model, so it's a bit surprising to see him marked up at 6/4. I think we can actually have a little punt here, 0.25u van Barneveld 4/7, it's right on the borderline of betting at that price, but factor in the possibility that Maik has a bit of trouble given who he's facing compared to random guy with the same stats, we can take it.

van Duijvenbode/Meikle - Dirk did get a bink/final back to back earlier in the season, but has been somewhat under the radar since then and hasn't done a huge deal since then, notably bricking both Euro Tours to miss that major and had early exits in the ones he did play. Ryan has been really quiet and it's actually a bit of a surprise he's actually made the field, I've talked about him somewhat in previous years but this year I don't recall noticing him at all. A quarter final in October was likely required to make this field. Seems like an important one for Dirk who is favoured in the low 70% range in the market, so I think we can go with another underdog shot here, 0.25u Meikle 12/5, there is a concerning consistency issue that might undo this but the model says 38%, so I'll take the shot and hope Ryan keeps things tidy (and that Dirk remains quiet).

Bunting/Anderson - This is a pretty tasty first round matchup. Always hard to say where Gary is considering how often he takes time off, but apart from the German series he looks to have played most of the Pro Tour and done enough to get here. Bunting is the higher seed but the slight betting underdog at 11/10, Ando's about a point ahead in scoring and more consistent, but the model says coinflip. So we can pass this one.

Final section might be later tonight, or it might be in the morning. Will see how things go.

Wednesday 24 November 2021

PC Finals tips - section two

Smith/Borland - Smith's rightly a decent favourite here. Borland's been a steady enough player over the last couple of years who's gotten a few decent scalps and can't be written off completely, but Smith's at a different level to be honest. 75/25 sort of game I feel, so I think the market is underrating William a touch, but not enough to consider a punt.

Gurney/Soutar - Daryl's been slowly drifting down the rankings, not exactly playing badly with a steady scoring rate just shy of 92, but without the sort of notable runs that we've seen in previous years and the game seems a touch off its prior peak. Alan's had a great first season, although probably fair to say the better work was in the early stages of 2021. Scoring is comparable to Gurney's, but it's structured so that Daryl feels like a 55/45 favourite, and perhaps a bit surprisingly the market agrees, cooling on Soutar enough that the line looks correct.

Rydz/Suljovic - Callan's begun to win titles, and is a very dangerous player while in form, while Mensur's picked up his game a tad over the last two to three months, while not back to where he was at his peak, it's at least prevented a decline. Feels flippy to me, and the model agrees calling it 52/48 Rydz, the market basically can't split them, although it does give Mensur the tiniest of edges. Nothing to see here betting wise.

Wade/Evans - James continues to play solid stuff, still chucking at a high level while a notable step behind the true elite and, in fairness, behind the next tier of players as well. Still should be more than dangerous enough to beat Evans who's not had a great deal to write home about and has had some pretty mediocre days throughout the season. Wade is favoured three to one in the market, which feels perhaps slightly too much just on gut, and on data it actually looks more like two to one. Really doesn't seem stylistically that this is the sort of matchup we want to take a flyer on, but wouldn't talk you out of a bet on Ricky if you're that way inclined.

Searle/Whitlock - Pretty bad floor season for Simon, who only just scraped into the field, this is in comparison to Ryan who's truly stepped up his game on both TV and the floor and comes in as the number five seed and around a two to one favourite in the markets. That might be doing a tiny disservice to Whitlock, who's not played complete trash, but I'm only looking at 13/8 to 7/4 to be a correct line rather than 2/1, it's certainly not the kind of underdog disparity that we're passing on in the game above. Maybe Simon's experience shows, who knows.

Joyce/Woodhouse - Ryan's put together some alright games, and looked the best he's been for a while in the Slam. Luke's not been bad, but hasn't really stepped on when many thought he might have done and has been lingering in the 40-50 range of the order of merit for some time now. This appears a tough one to call on paper, would probably project 60/40 Joyce blind, the model has it closer with Woodhouse actually passing 45%, but missing out on interpretation of greater inconsistency. If it wasn't for that then 13/8 would certainly be in consideration.

Cross/Wattimena - Another player who's had a real bad 2021, when was the last time Jermaine did anything? He's easily out of the top 32 and with the low seeding he has here, was actually in some danger of missing the worlds for a bit. Cross has picked his game up and added another major to his locker, and shouldn't be in any real danger here. The model actually gives Jermaine more than a puncher's chance, with a 41% projection that ignores Rob being real consistent and Wattimena being anything but, we can get good odds so I think we can throw a punt out, 0.1u Wattimena 3/1, if we say that the inconsistency takes off 5% chances it's still worth a go I think.

Aspinall/Smith - Nathan is another big name kind of like Chisnall who's had a quiet season in comparison to where he is ranked, albeit with better scoring, and he's definitely played better stuff in the latter half of the season. Jeff's been doing fine despite the irritating here and back from Canada which got to the point where if I remember rightly he missed a few events, but is here now for the main events. Really don't think Jeff has the power to create enough chances against Nathan, and the model gives this as surprisingly one sided with a near 80/20 projection. That is almost enough to make 4/11 a tempter, but we won't push quite that small an edge despite the favourite tag helping things. Jeff can be clinical when needed.

Remainder tomorrow, probably section three around lunchtime and the remainder in the evening.

PC Finals tips - section one

Let's rattle through as many of these as we can:

de Sousa/Petersen - Actually somewhat surprised that Devon actually got enough money to creep into the event, I think he got a moderately deep run early on and then just kept things ticking over. Also a bit surprised that de Sousa did enough to end up as the number one seed. Doesn't matter though, Jose's a big favourite naturally, but only just over 75%. As such, 10/3 on Devon is pretty close to accurate.

King/Labanauskas - Mervyn's been solid all year, Darius meanwhile has had a couple of alright runs, been a bit quiet from him but he was always fairly close to major qualification and actually did enough to make the Grand Prix. Would fancy Mervyn on eye test, and he's just a bit better than 60/40 on the model. Market favours King ever so slightly more, not enough to consider tipping Darius though.

Dobey/O'Connor - Chris is pretty high up having managed to bink events and is hitting form just at the right time, although he didn't really show it having got bailed in terms of making the Grand Slam. Willie's not really been on the radar this season, but has done enough to get here, a late semi final being a bit of a difference maker. Dobey should be a prohibitive favourite here and win three in four, the market doesn't agree and I think there's enough for a small shot, 0.25u Dobey 1/2. Not going much more as I think the model might be somewhat overrating Chris, but still worth the shot.

Ratajski/Meulenkamp - Ratajski won the last event, which pushes him nicely up the rankings right when it matters, while Ron did most of his work early on in the season with a few board wins, just about sneaking into the field. Seems an easy Krzysztof prediction, the market does seem to be overrating him a touch, I'd have gone 2/5 and he's actually 3/10, so you could maybe think about a small Ron shot if you really want to push small edges.

Price/Lowe - Yeah, Gerwyn's looking really good as we get to the business end of the season and won the Grand Slam yet again. Jason has been a touch quiet after a nice first season, only just doing enough to make the worlds on account of Jeff Smith binking one of the CDC qualifying spots, couple of back to back quarter finals being the difference maker in the first half of the year. Lowe's not drawing completely dead, having a touch over 20% chance, but with so long since results I don't want to look at the 5/1 we can get with any real seriousness.

Schindler/White - Martin's had a fantastic campaign and would have been right up there in the Pro Tour qualifying spots for the worlds if he hadn't already binked the superleague. Ian's dropped somewhat mainly due to lack of European Tours to replace the great 2019 he had, he's not dropped off a cliff in terms of quality, but the rankings don't lie. As such, the market thinks Martin a bit more than 55/45 - and despite his form, the bookies have him at evens. Worth thinking about a Schindler bet if it drifts at all.

Dolan/Barstow - Brendan maintains an under the radar presence, going along with a real good 93/turn scoring which is top 16 standard. Chas didn't get a card, but was not far off at all and made the most of all the Pro Tour call ups he got with more than one quarter. Chas looks a bit outmatched here with just below a one in three chance to win this one, and he's 5/2 in the market so that looks about right to me.

Chisnall/Edhouse - Dave's not had a whole amount of landmark results in 2021 with just a couple of semis on the tour to his name, he's playing a clear top 32 standard but not quite matching his rankings. Edhouse has had an alright season, sneaking into the European Championship and winning a fair few boards to get up the charts. Dave ought to take this seven out of ten from where I see it, which is close to where the market is, they favour Chizzy ever so slightly more, but we can't bet this one.

Probably do the second quarter later tonight.

Monday 22 November 2021

Brief FRH rankings update

Price is quite good at this darts thing

New FRH rankings:

1 Gerwyn Price
2 Peter Wright
3 Michael van Gerwen
4 James Wade
5 Jonny Clayton (UP 1)
6 Jose de Sousa (DOWN 1)
7 Rob Cross (UP 1)
8 Dimitri van den Bergh (DOWN 1)
9 Michael Smith (UP 3)
10 Gary Anderson (DOWN 1)
11 Krzysztof Ratajski (DOWN 1)
12 Joe Cullen (DOWN 1)
13 Dave Chisnall
14 Nathan Aspinall
15 Dirk van Duijvenbode
16 Stephen Bunting
17 Danny Noppert
18 Luke Humphries (UP 1)
19 Ryan Searle (DOWN 1)
20 Mervyn King

Surprising lack of movement other than Smith getting back up into the top ten after his semi final. Mensur didn't quite do enough to get into the top 20, but is only about 15k away from it. Joyce is nearing the top 32, but has a bit gap to Ross Smith above him. Sherrock is 81st.

I will have a bunch of Players Championship finals tips up during the week. Will probably do one half in one post and the other in another.

Saturday 20 November 2021

Just a real quick Slam post

Price is perhaps undervalued. Generally seeing 4/11 which points to about a 73% implied chance, I'm thinking it's higher, not 80% and not worth a bet, given it's big odds on, but worth considering. Not quite sure why the Wright/Smith market is so close. I think 60/40. 4/5 is generally available on Wright, you can see 5/6 in places. If for whatever reason you see evens, snap it up.

Friday 19 November 2021

Quarter final tips

Amazing how all this "should we give someone who lost more money on the Challenge Tour in entry fees than they won in prize money" debate might be moot with a half decent worlds run. Quarters it is, tips are:

Wade/Cross - Nope. Seems like it's going to be real tight. Recent form is correctly listing Cross as a small favourite, 6/5 Wade against 8/11 is maybe a little unkind on James, but he should be a dog. Evens against 10/11 is where I'd have set it.

Price/Clayton - Jonny is the favourite? Really? Looks 60/40 in favour of Gerwyn to me. Any time we can get even money on the world champion we should probably take it, 0.25u Price evs.

van Gerwen/Smith - Will Smith finally make a big tournament breakthrough? Going to have to do it the hard way if so. Market thinks 75/25, that's maybe a little harsh. 70/30 is more how I'm seeing that one, it's not enough to bet on Smith, but I certainly wouldn't be lumping van Gerwen in any sort of accumulator at 1/3.

Wright/Sherrock - My god was Suljovic poor. I'm not touching this one with a barge pole. Fallon at around 7/2 is half tempting, but this is a long format match against an elite talent. Hard to see how she takes this unless Peter completely shits the bed.

Tuesday 16 November 2021

Slam last 16

Urgh, that was annoying. Pretty much everyone I wanted to get through didn't get through. Takes a lot of the interest out of it. Was looking fairly bad on the betting front as well before Rowby allowed us to get out of the last set of group games relatively unscathed, still down just over half a unit but we're getting into longer games now so let's see what's going on.

Joyce/Cross - Market looks fine. Ryan's done a great job to get this far, but it's hard to go against the former world champ on current form. 9/4 seems pretty much spot on value wise looking season long, I'm thinking 32% Joyce? Leave this one alone.

Wade/Rodriguez - Another one where the group C player comes in as the favourite, not quite as much as Rob is, but still the favourite, so maybe we get a rematch of what was a pretty good last group game? I kind of think this is pretty close to a bet on Rowby, we can get 9/5 which translates to needing 36% to break even, the projection shows about 43% so it's close, but Rowby has about double the inconsistency score that James has. This seems like the worst sort of matchup, so I'm not going to try to push a close call into a bet here.

Price/Brooks, Clayton/Rafferty - Going to deal with both of these in the same comment as they're fairly similar. 1/9 doesn't look too much wrong. Bradley probably has the slightly better shot, but neither actually rates to be worth any sort of underdog yolo punt. It's a shame neither of the kids managed to nick the group, as they'd then have played each other and the probable Price/Clayton quarter would be brought forward.

Suljovic/Sherrock - Jesus christ why on earth did she get that 170. Credit where due but I'm a big Clemens fan and that was real tough to see. Still, we get the worlds rematch, it's basically saying around 70/30 Suljovic, I still don't have enough data on Fallon to say anything of note on that front (averaging 85 on the Challenge Tour and losing more in entry fees than she won in prize money will do that), but it seems fair enough.

Smith/Cullen - Should be an interesting one. Two players in a kind of similar spot in most rankings, market can't separate them. I think Smith's got the smallest of edges, it's not quite 55/45, so with him being slightly odds on compared to Joe's straight evens, I can pass.

van Gerwen/Anderson - I'm no huge fan of Gary or Barney, at least now, Barney back in the day was a different story, but being denied an MvG/RvB match is an irritant. Seems to be fairly close to value on Michael here, I can see 78% chances, and we can get better than 1/3. It's really not enough, but I wouldn't hate just sticking the two Welsh lads and Michael into an acca as bankers if you just want to punt on something else to build the base price of your bets.

Wright/de Sousa - For me this is the match of the round with two top five players clashing - I'd have preferred Humphries to get out but we can't have nice things. Market is favouring Peter ever so slightly, another 55/45 kind of deal, model thinks it might actually be the other way around, but it does love Jose and doesn't take into account a bit better consistency from Wright. No bet.

Nothing here really.

Monday 15 November 2021

Slam days 3-4

Bit of a disappointing day 2 with all the bets whiffing, Schindler's really disappointed this tournament, Rusty wasn't bad (idiotic bull route on 66 when he was broken in leg 2 aside), Dobey had the one terrible leg 7 which was very costly, then Rowby wasn't exactly bad, just got outplayed by Joyce. Things happen.

A few people have booked their place in the last 16, any game where we've got a qualifier against someone already out we're taking off the board and not considering. It becomes a friendly for all intents and purposes. So what do we have left?

Dobey/Joyce - Off the board.

Price/Schindler - Off the board.

Krcmar/Williams - We can consider this one, although Krcmar is basically needing two 5-0 results to qualify. Hard to think he's going to be that motivated as a result. On straight paper the model favours Jim ever so slightly, and he's 8/11, so we're not going to touch this one as a result.

Wade/Cross - Hmm. Cross only needs 2-3 legs to secure the group win. Wade may not need anything when this goes live as a Boris win will qualify Wade unless he gets absolutely murdered. Model says this is flippy, market is favouring Cross a bit too much but just because of the group dynamics I'm ignoring it.

Brooks/Rusty - Rusty is favoured 70/30 in the model, but Bradley's played extremely well in this group so far. As such, Rusty is actually the dog in the market. Rusty needs at least a 5-2 win and then help from Clayton to advance, would an early Bradley leg put too much pressure on? I think we've got to take a small 0.1u Rodriguez 11/10, but this could end up being a weird one.

Clayton/King - It could be the case that if Brooks wins, then King will need at least a 5-1 win. Or, if Rusty wins, then King just needs to get home. King isn't quite value on the market - he's done enough this year that he shouldn't be longer than 2/1 here, but this could again be odd.

Ratajski/Rafferty - Straight winner takes all here. 0.25u Ratajski 3/10, moderately small here despite the model favouring Ratajski hugely, given that Nathan hasn't been too bad.

Bunting/Rowby - Another winner takes all. Bunting is coming in as the near 2-1 favourite. Rowby seems better than that, 0.25u Rodriguez 7/4, the model says it's a flip. Bunting's probably playing a little bit better than year long this weekend, but Rowby has looked good as well. Taking him with confidence here.

Clemens/Sherrock - On to Tuesday now. Gabriel is on four and Sherrock is on two, so while Gabriel will take the group with a win, he only actually needs to get to a decider. I think we can avoid this, Fallon's rated as winning one in three, which seems fine, she did look pretty good against de Decker.

Anderson/van Barneveld - Yet more straight showdowns, and Barney comes in as a slight dog. I'm not really sure why, season long stats give it to Barney 55/45. What exactly has Gary done this year after the worlds? 6/5 is very close to a value punt. If I see Gary has lost the bull and I can still get it, I'll jump in.

Cullen/Ashton - Lisa needs a 5-0 here or she's out. 9/2 is perhaps underrating her slightly, although maybe she's underperforming a touch in the first two games. It's not underrating enough to warrant a bet, maybe Joe will also relax if he just takes the first leg and knows that, barring Hendo being a fuckin legend, he's through.

de Sousa/Humphries - Four point versus two point game here, Jose's needing three legs to guarantee the tiebreaker over Luke, who really needs to win and likely do so heavily enough to get ahead of de Sousa. The market looks close enough to correct, I'm seeing 63%, he's 4/6, next please.

Suljovic/Campbell - Mensur can get through with a 5-3 win, so he can't take this too easily. He's looked good, Matt's looked OK but not really doing enough that I think he'll truly threaten Suljovic. The odds for Suljovic look within fractions of a percent of being perfect anyway, so we'll move on again.

Smith/Davis - Off the board. 1/33 anyway lol.

van Gerwen/Henderson - Michael's been looking spectacular. Hendo hasn't. We can get better than 1/5 on Michael, that's more or less where I do see this game. He only needs one leg, so I think this is a case of getting it then playing with complete freedom.

Wright/de Decker - It's not a complete dead rubber despite de Decker being out already - he's only out on leg difference. Wright just needs a win of any description, and it's hard to see that he doesn't do this given that Mike's really not looked great in the first two games. Season long Wright is too short, but maybe de Decker just folds too easily given the situation. He can't even get third unless we see a 5-0 and then the same in the Clemens/Sherrock game.

Hopefully these go a bit better, although if they don't, maybe we dial back our expectations of the Rodriguez brothers as we approach the business end of the season. As an aside, Paul Lim is back! Legend.

Sunday 14 November 2021

Slam day 2 evening

Missed off one game from the afternoon session, whoops:

Brooks/Clayton - Bradley just took the chances he was offered really, three legs in seven visits. Clayton looked real solid on his own throw, so I'm thinking it's going to be tricky for Bradley in this one. Market has Jonny as a huge favourite as you would expect, and 1/5 is somewhat justified. Could even be a tick or two shorter really.

Davis/van Barneveld - Joe's game really wasn't there unfortunately. Barney had a fun game with Smith where he came up just short, failing to hold in the decider but generally not doing much of anything wrong. I really don't want to recommend Barney at 1/14, but I can't see how he doesn't win this one.

Campbell/Humphries - Matt was a bit up and down, the middle part of the game he played fine, missing doubles for two big checkouts to break and a steady hold, but the other legs were a bit of a mess. Humphries wasn't doing a great deal wrong throughout his game against Suljovic to be honest. Market thinks 75/25 Luke, which seems spot on to me.

Ashton/Henderson - Lisa didn't even get a dart at a double, only really the last leg where she was scoring heavily enough to truly warrant one, but Michael killed in five visits so that was that. John was kind of similar but did get a couple in the first leg and a chunk in the last, albeit at a less than ideal double. Market thinks 2-1 in favour of Hendo, that looks about right to me, maybe Lisa has a bit more of a chance than that but my stats don't include the World Cup so maybe it's more correct than I think.

de Decker/Sherrock - Mike mainly just had a few half chances against Clemens, Gabriel wasn't doing too much wrong apart from one scruffy leg which Mike took. Fallon was beaten easily by Peter but the game was marred by lots of missed doubles from both sides. Market has this fairly close, sort of about a 60/40 Mike game, that feels like it should be about right given how de Decker has played of late.

de Sousa/Suljovic - Jose was just fine against Campbell, one or two iffy legs but nothing major. Mensur was steady, didn't win too many quickly but was right there with some very good scoring in the legs he lost, definitely having a fine autumn. Market thinks Jose takes this a bit more than 60%, but not quite two in three, that looks to be just about right really. I've got it two in three but factor in recent form and I can accept movement of a couple of percent.

Anderson/Smith - Gary was basically in neutral and did enough to win, it wasn't a good performance in the slightest but it didn't need to be. Smith was very steady in the legs he won but couldn't quite get enough scoring in the others. Think Michael's being undervalued a bit here, I'm thinking 60/40, market has him at 4/5. It's not quite enough to bet, but maybe if you see him win the bull you can take a small poke at it.

Clemens/Wright - Gabriel looked maybe the best he's been for some time in a professional display against de Decker, while Wright was in a bit of a scrappy game. 65/35 Wright is where the value is projected, Peter probably takes it slightly more than that but especially with the vig in the game it's nowhere near enough to take a punt.

van Gerwen/Cullen - Joe did enough to beat Hendo, although what would have happened if John had have held the two times he had darts to do so is another question, probably still wins but it would be more interesting. MvG also won 5-0, doing a little bit better than Cullen did statistically. Michael is shorter than 1/2 here, that maybe underrates Joe ever so slightly, but there's no real edge here.

So yeah, if you were looking for any additional tips, sorry, there are none.

Slam day 2 afternoon

Didn't watch any of it yesterday (football did for the afternoon session, circumstances beyond my control did for the evening session), mostly went as expected but a couple of surprises in there for sure, will mention how things went as we go game by game and try to extract some value - I'll post the afternoon stuff now and come back quite shortly with the evening session, just want to get it out there quickly:

Schindler/Rafferty - Martin seemed off, missed some doubles, unfortunate. Rafferty played well, holding his own throw solidly but never really doing enough to generate anything to break Price. Market is 2-1 in favour of Schindler, I have enough of a sample on Nathan that we can take it, 0.25u Schindler 1/2, Martin rates to be a big favourite, but only half a unit as Nathan looks to be trending upwards in the last month or two and definitely looked alright yesterday.

King/Rusty - Big surprise for Mervyn to lose that one. Just wasn't scoring much at all. Rusty was fine, just a bit off in the first one for the break and then couldn't get close to Clayton on Jonny's throw. About the same price in favour of Mervyn here, I think it's more like 60/40 though. Rusty at 2/1 is real tempting, especially if we know that they're going to maintain their respective form from yesterday. What the hell, 0.1u Rodriguez 2/1, we'll go small and see what happens.

Wade/Krcmar - Boris just couldn't do anything on his throw, mainly double hitting. Cross was giving nothing away on his, but Krcmar gave away his own throw too easily. Wade wasn't bad against Jim, just a couple of dodgy legs to be broken in the midgame really, not sure what was worse, still being on three figures after 18 darts or missing three clear at double ten. Most un-Wadey. Similar analysis to the last one, except Wade is slightly more of a favourite than King, and Boris didn't show too much yesterday, so an easy pass.

Bunting/Dobey - Stephen was involved in a decent duel early on, scoring extremely heavily in the legs he lost, Joyce just stealing what he could and pinching the match. Dobey just wasn't in top gear, combination of weak scoring and missed doubles gave Rowby enough chances. Market can barely split them, just giving Dobey the edge, but I can split them, 0.25u Dobey 5/6, he's playing well enough right now that he should take it two out of three. If Bunting plays like yesterday this could go horribly wrong, but we'll trust the bigger picture.

Joyce/Rowby - Ryan got the win with a very Wade-like performance, Rowby just did what he needed to, which you would think might favour Joyce in this one if he's in equally opportunistic mood today. Market's got a bit of vig and just under 60/40 in favour of Ryan, but I kind of think that should be the other way around to be honest. Joyce is barely scoring more than Rowby this season, and on winning legs Ryan's a clear point less which generates a 57% win chance for the Austrian. 0.1u Rodriguez 13/10, this seems a solid edge but there's enough uncertainty and variance that I'll cut the bet down to the minimum.

Williams/Cross - Jim just snook over the line against Wade, only the one real impressive leg to open then plodding along with six visit kills and scoring around 85 in the ones he lost. Cross wasn't really challenged by Krcmar and you feel he's got more gears if needed. The market seems to favour Cross, perhaps a little bit more than is warranted, but I can't really recommend a bet on Jim even at north of 2/1.

Ratajski/Price - Tantalising matchup to close the session, Ratajski played just fine to take what Martin offered and hit a few legs, especially on throw, that didn't allow Schindler a chance. Price we mentioned earlier, didn't look fantastic on throw, only getting the one leg in fifteen in a match that went with serve all the way, but the scoring was such that he was pressuring the Rafferty throw relentlessly, scoring over 110 a turn on it. Market thinks Price at more or less two in three (a bit of vig here), that is underrating Ratajski a bit here, but not enough to take it. 9/5 at 38% isn't really the sort of edge we're going to push against a world champion.

Back real soon.

Friday 12 November 2021

Slam day 1 bets

Going to be incredibly brief here unfortunately as there's so many games.

Bunting/Joyce - Seems right. Bunting favourite, Joyce is live, meh.

Ratajski/Schindler - Possibly the best game of the day is second on? Fuck this tournament. Fairly close to a Schindler bet but the market's caught up enough.

King/Brooks - Probably actually close to a value bet on King. Seems close to 80% and we get better than 1/3.

Wade/Williams - Sample size is a bit short on Jim, so got to be careful here, but what sample we do have puts it at around 60/40 and he's 13/8, which isn't tempting.

Cross/Krcmar - Very close to a bet on Boris. Not quite the edge over a year long sample and Cross is doing better work of late so happy to avoid.

Clayton/Rusty - Meh, this is kind of close to value on Rusty. It's short enough that I see him as better than one in four, we can get 7/2. Don't hate the bet, but no.

Price/Rafferty - Probably acca safe. Nathan's not shown enough to make me think he can threaten, but while taking Price at 1/7 is probably technically correct, I'll pass on it as short race, weird things can happen.

Dobey/Rowby - Projections have this pretty much bang on 2-1 in favour of Chris. Shame that the market is aligned in the same way, I thought there might have been value.

Clemens/de Decker - Seems deceptively close. Market is underrating Mike a touch, not quite enough to punt though. Wouldn't hate a quick handicap punt on Mike, particularly if you see he has won the darts.

de Sousa/Campbell - Matt isn't hugely lacking in sample size given how much he pwned the Challenge Tour, so I think we can say that the market isn't actually being unkind to him. Jose is just that much better, and if we were going to take a shot it would be on the Portuguese ace.

Humphries/Suljovic - Appears too close to call, albeit Luke appears to have the slight edge. Market agrees. Might actually be shaded too far in Luke's favour ever so slightly with Mensur on a bit of an upswing. Nothing here though.

Anderson/Davis - Think Joe should be off the board until we've seen him play. 1/4 Ando seems awfully tempting though.

van Gerwen/Ashton - Can Lisa hit some hot form enough to take down MvG? Yes. Can she do it often enough that we can take 13/2? Nope, although it looks about right.

Cullen/Henderson - Hendo might have slightly more chance to take down Joe than the market suggests. We can get 5/2, I'm thinking it should be nearer 7/4, 15/8 territory. I wouldn't hate the punt but there isn't quite the edge.

Wright/Sherrock - I have no data on Fallon. No idea if she played the Challenge Tour off the top of my head, but if she did, she did nowt in it. 7/2 looks about right.

Smith/van Barneveld - Should be a close game. It's nearly a bet on Barney. 13/8 with 46% win chances isn't a bad punt, last on on the day with a pissed up crowd likely in his favour, if you want to go with it I wouldn't hate it.

Day 1 of this is always a bit of a minefield, as such that I've talked myself out of everything may not be the worst idea. It isn't as if I've talked myself out of anything concrete for spurious objective reasons. Maybe I should go Barney, I don't know. I'm happy enough to see how things go and then re-evaluate on Sunday morning. Good luck ladies and gents.

Thursday 11 November 2021

Some Grand Slam thoughts

Dimitri's tested positive for the bubonic plague, sigh. We have no idea whether he's actually ill or not, but oh well, let's look at the groups.

Group A - This is a spicy one. Let's get the obvious out of the way - Rafferty will clearly lose all three games. He's got a ton of potential for sure, but hasn't shown anything this year which makes me think he'll compete with players of this calibre. Question now is whether Schindler can convert his top 20 level of play into results against Price, who is clearly still super elite, and Ratajski, who is clearly putting up top 10 levels of performance and results. He can, and the short race will help. It's only best of nine (I see no real reason why they can't bump to best of eleven), variance helps here.

Group B - Clayton's the clear favourite. He's hoovered up everything that doesn't count towards the rankings and is top five in scoring for what counts. He'll clearly be fine. Brooks and Rodriguez is going to be an interesting battle of youth, until you work out that Rusty is way better than Bradley is. Then we throw in Mervyn King, who's been super solid all year, but isn't that far ahead of Rusty in all honesty. Will be down to those two I'd think.

Group C - This seems like one of the more interesting ones. Wade is nowhere near one of the more dominant seeds, indeed Cross' resurgence in form sees him above him in scoring. Williams, from what we've seen on the Challenge Tour, has been playing at an extremely competent level and can easily threaten either over a short format. Then we chuck in Boris Krcmar, who is deadly on his day and can quite easily upset any of these. I wouldn't like to call a top two in this one.

Group D - This was the Dimitri group, but now we've got Chris Dobey in, which I don't mind as according to my scoring table it actually makes the group stronger. He's in red hot form and will probably get out of this one. Bunting, Joyce and Rodriguez don't have a great deal to separate them - Rowby is probably the weakest of the three but is trailing Joyce over the course of the year by less than a quarter of a point per turn. Stephen's only about a point higher than either of them. It's going to be tight as anything.

Group E - God knows what will happen here. Wright's going to take the group, that much seems obvious. As for the others, who knows. Clemens has got a couple of decent runs this year, but looks a fair bit off what he was doing in 2019. Sherrock has looked great in exhibitions but we'll see what happens here. de Decker hasn't done a huge amount in 2021, but certainly has upped his game over the last month or so and is peaking at the right time, so we could easily get a situation where this comes down to leg difference.

Group F - This is going to be good. Jose, for what many say, is still playing at an elite level, clearly top five in 2021. Humphries would probably be a name I would chuck into a "next player to win a major" conversation and is scoring in the top 20. Mensur's done most of everything and has picked his game up a ton in the last quarter and is probably playing as good as he has in the last couple of years. Then we chuck in Matt Campbell, whose data looks a bit pedestrian but we've not seen since the last worlds what he can really do, on his day he can certainly push any of these hard. Think he's the clear underdog in this one, but I'd love him to do well here.

Group G - This seems one of the easier groups to call. van Gerwen is back to the top of my scoring charts after a solid last weekend, finally grabbing a ranking title. Cullen is hanging around the top 20 area and should grab second. Hendo isn't doing too badly but is scoring below 90 over the course of the year and is a clear three points per turn lower than Cullen is. Then we chuck in Lisa Ashton, who's always been a bit hit and miss at this level, but mostly miss on the Pro Tour this year, but perhaps the Women's Series has sparked an upturn, and in a short race she can roll off 3-4 legs pretty rapidly.

Group H - Ando's hanging around as the top seed. Not sure why, Barney's outscoring him, as is Smith. To be fair, Barney's not ahead by much, but he is ahead, Michael is a good point further ahead. I think unfortunately we can chuck Joe Davis out of the equation, he's been struggling with injury per the PDC and didn't show a great deal on the Dev Tour when he did play, so this will likely be a straight three into two equation, one which I hope Smith doesn't manage to fuck up.

Bets tomorrow.

Tuesday 9 November 2021

So what was I saying in the last update?

Something about the Development Tour. Wow, that German kid could be something special. That's quite a lot of damage to do very early in a not exactly weak field. Won't get ahead of ourselves, will see what happens at Ally Pally, but it's exciting times again.

I've asked the Weekly Dartscast peeps who they think is the strongest player not currently in the worlds field. For me, it seems like a pretty obvious James Wilson. He's actually on the top page of my database right now with scoring for the year of just under 92, slotting in between the ever deadly Mervyn King, the major winner Daryl Gurney, the former world champion Adrian Lewis and the upstart that is Florian Hempel. He's lacking sample size a bit with about a 45% leg win rate over less than 400 legs played (by contrast, Gurney has won that many this season), but it's perhaps an indication that he's been running into tricky draws.

Who else? It looks razor sharp as to whether Jason Lowe will make it, I think he's close to the last man out as of right now, I think it's fair to say he's had nowhere near as good a season as in 2020, but he's not played bad at all. Andy Boulton and Scott Waites are only fractions behind, as are the ever dangerous Krzysztof Kcuik and Karel Sedlacek, hopefully one can bink a regional qualifier.

In general, the worlds field is beginning to fill up. We've got pretty much all the remaining ones over the next couple of weekends, so let's see what goes on.

Saturday 6 November 2021

Been a bit of a break in updates

Yeah, yeah, my bad, just got caught up in various things so didn't get out the content I wanted after the penultimate Super Series, but we're done with it now. Straight to the rankings:

1 Gerwyn Price
2 Peter Wright
3 Michael van Gerwen
4 James Wade
5 Jose de Sousa
6 Jonny Clayton
7 Dimitri van den Bergh
8 Rob Cross (UP 1)
9 Gary Anderson (DOWN 1)
10 Krzysztof Ratajski (UP 1)
11 Joe Cullen (DOWN 1)
12 Michael Smith
13 Dave Chisnall
14 Nathan Aspinall
15 Dirk van Duijvenbode
16 Stephen Bunting
17 Danny Noppert
18 Ryan Searle (UP 2)
19 Luke Humphries (DOWN 1)
20 Mervyn King (DOWN 1)

Most moves are beneficiaries of binks, at least in the case of Cross and Ratajski, Searle making two more finals but not getting the additional bink that might have given him a chance to make the Slam might be costly. Smith binking one keeps him right behind Cullen, MvG (!) binking one means he's not actually that far behind Wright now, Dobey is still outside the top 32 but is closing the gap back down again. Dimitri's bink was kind of offset by a string of bad results afterwards, steady performances and one decent run might have seen him get past Clayton, but it's not to be. Rydz is solidly in the top 30 now, there's a bit of a north east feel around that with Rydz, VVDV, Durrant, Ross Smith and Dobey in that order from 29-33.

We're closing up the Dev Tour now - obviously Rusty will hold, but cool to see Bialecki getting a title yesterday. Should be back on Sunday evening with a bit more stuff, some Slam previewing in the week maybe.