Premier League Darts Week Sixteen (Finals Night) – Preview
Thursday will see the final night of the 2016 Premier League and the four best players of the tournament will face off for the crown. Michael van Gerwen will play Adrian Lewis in the first semi-final match after a glorious win over Phil Taylor last week to top the table. That leaves Gary Anderson and Phil ‘The Power’ Taylor which has become a bit of a classic over the past few years. There has been 21828 darts thrown in the competition so far and on Thursday the crowd in the 02 London will see the one which wins the £200,000 prize.
Michael van Gerwen v Adrian Lewis
Michael van Gerwen completed one of his objectives last week after beating Phil Taylor 7-5 which resulted in the Dutchman topping the table for a fourth consecutive year. The second objective will be winning the prestigious title itself which nobody can say he doesn’t deserve with van Gerwen’s overall tournament average at 107.93 compared to the whole player’s overall average of the tournament at 98.25.
Adrian Lewis shocked quite a few people last week with a 7-2 drubbing over World Champion, Gary Anderson. Some will say Anderson wasn’t focused as he already knew where he was finishing on the table but nevertheless it will give Lewis a massive confidence boost ahead of his semi-final with van Gerwen. ‘Jackpot’ will now go in to Finals Night having won 9 out of his 16 matches and an overall tournament average of 96.50 (11.43 points lower than Michael van Gerwen’s).
VERDICT: The bookies certainly know who they are backing for this semi-final with MVG at around 1/7 with most bookmakers. The semi-finals are the best of 19 legs which you have to say suits van Gerwen as if he does have a slow start there is plenty of time to recuperate. I see this match ending in no way other than an MVG win and by at least four or five legs.
Phil Taylor v Gary Anderson
Phil Taylor will be frustrated at the fact he failed to finish top of the Premier League table and if anything it will spur him on to prove the doubters wrong and win the tournament on Thursday. Taylor has impressed many with his performances this year as some didn’t even expect him to make the play-offs never mind challenge for top spot. Phil Taylor has now won 11 out of 16 matches and goes on to face one of his rivals Gary Anderson with an overall tournament average of 101.15.
Gary Anderson has shown some slips this year including last week against Adrian Lewis but when it comes to the big occasions you normally see him sparkle. Last time these two met in the Premier League was in Sheffield where Taylor defeated Anderson 7-3. ‘The Flying Scotsman’ has 20 points from a possible 32 and has an overall tournament average of 100.15.
VERDICT: This match is predicted to be a much tighter contest than the first semi-final and many will struggle to pick a winner. Both times they have met in the 2016 Premier League has saw Taylor win both of them. Phil Taylor has been the more consistent out the two this year and that is why I predict a tight win for Taylor.
2016 PREMIER LEAGUE WINNER VERDICT: Phil Taylor
Premier League Darts Week Sixteen (Finals Night) – Fixtures
Semi Final 1 – Michael van Gerwen v Adrian Lewis (Best 0f 19 Legs)
Semi-Final 2 – Phil Taylor v Gary Anderson (Best of 19 Legs)
Final – Semi-Final 1 Winner v Semi-Final 2 Winner (Best of 21 Legs)
By Logan McWilliams