PDC World Championship: Barney to topple Taylor

PDC World Championship: Barney to topple Taylor

Raymond van Barneveld is 13/10 to beat old foe Phil Taylor and reach the PDC World Championship semi-finals tonight.

Two of the biggest names in darts, who produced an epic final in 2007 when van Barneveld won 7-6, go head-to-head in a blockbuster of a contest at Alexandra Palace.

Van Barneveld has endured a daunting run to the quarter-finals, beating Robbie Green, Alan Norris and fifth seed Adrian Lewis, and is priced at 13/2 to emerge with a 5-3 victory and set up a potential last-four clash with Michael van Gerwen.

With that scoreline in mind, over 7.5 sets is tempting at 19/20. Sixteen-time world champion Taylor has failed to set this tournament alight so far but, having beaten ‘Barney’ in the 2009 final and semi-finals in 2013 and 2015, is the 11/20 favourite.

With Taylor often targeting 19, van Barneveld can be backed at 19/4 to win the match, complete the highest checkout and hit most 180s.

Taylor told PDC.tv: “My game against Raymond will be the game of the tournament. It’s going to be buzzing in Alexandra Palace. I’m going to relax and enjoy it and, if I get through it, I think I can win another World Championship title.”

Van Gerwen (below) is 3/2 to hammer 10/1 shot Daryl Gurney 5-0 and canter into the semis. Gurney will need to improve his doubles if he is to compete with the world number one after the Irishman’s wayward finishing almost cost him a place in the last eight. The Dutchman is 19/20 to score over 9.5 180s in what is expected to be a convincing victory.

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In the afternoon session, Gary Anderson is likely to continue his quest for a third consecutive World Championship title with a win over Dave Chisnall. The Scot has looked untroubled so far in his second defence and, facing a player who is appearing in the quarter-finals for the first time, is the 9/50 favourite.

Anderson is 51/20 to win the match, complete the highest checkout and hit most 180s, while a tempting bet is the defending champion to score over 10.5 maximums at 19/20.

James Wade is 19/10 to send Peter Wright crashing out at the quarter-final stage for the third consecutive year.

Wright has lost to both Anderson and Lewis in recent times and Wade, boosted by his comeback triumph over Michael Smith, is 15/2 to edge a nine-set thriller. ‘Snakebite’ is 9/2 to win 5-3 in a game which can be backed at 51/50 to have more than 7.5 sets and 19/4 to include a 170 checkout.

Wright said: “I’ve been playing well and averaging over 100 but that is the standard you need to hit in every match for it to be possible to become world champion.”

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