Premier League darts tips: Best bets for week 1 in Newcastle
Tom Clee reveals his best darts betting tips for every match of the opening night in Newcastle, which can be combined into a tasty Lucky 31.
Create your own bet for all Premier League darts matches this season with #BetYourWay. Simply tweet us your request @betway using the hashtag #BetYourWay, and we'll get it priced up before the start.
Here are Tom Clee's darts betting tips for the opening night in Newcastle...
JAMES WADE v RAYMOND VAN BARNEVELD
Van Barneveld to win, hit over 2.5 180s and checkout over 96.5
Wade, by his own admission, didn't play well in finishing runner-up at the Masters last weekend – throwing just one checkout higher than 104 and averaging a maximum every six legs.
The Machine wasn't even that efficient, having his throw broken five times by Peter Wright in the semi-final.
Barney tends to start this tournament strongly, winning four of his last six opening-night matches (against Gary Anderson, twice, Phil Taylor and Adrian Lewis).
The Dutchman knows he's got a point to prove after being forced to defend his inclusion and, having had plenty of time to stew on a limp World Championship exit, I fancy him to start his farewell season like he means it.
GERWYN PRICE v DARYL GURNEY
Gurney to win & hit the most 180s
These players fared very differently in their debut Premier League campaign last year, with Gurney staying in the hunt for the play-offs until the final round of fixtures after Price had been eliminated in last place on Judgement Night.
The Northern Irishman also threw 10 more 180s than any other player, while Price managed the fewest with 11 in nine matches.
The Iceman has struggled for form since winning the Grand Slam of Darts, losing his first match at all three tournaments since, while a three-month suspended sentence for his behaviour during that final means he’ll have to soften his combative edge.
Gurney hasn't got a great record against the Welshman, but he looks a good bet to get off to a solid start.
CHRIS DOBEY v MENSUR SULJOVIC
Dobey to win & hit the most 180s
Suljovic has more right than most to be annoyed with the PDC's largely unpopular decision to invite a weekly replacement for the injured Gary Anderson.
Dobey enjoyed a fine run to the last eight of the World Championship in December and, playing a match in which he has nothing to lose in his native Newcastle, looks a daunting prospect.
The 28-year-old has no obvious flaws in his game, averaging 97.75 across 20 sets at Ally Pally and hitting 46 per cent of 107 darts at double. He also outscored Anderson in 180s during their quarter-final, nailing six in the first nine legs.
Suljovic was eliminated after losing seven of his nine matches last season, including the first three in a row, and could easily be caught cold on Thursday.
MICHAEL VAN GERWEN v MICHAEL SMITH
Van Gerwen to win & checkout over 120.5
Smith is currently as high as he's ever been in the Order of Merit, but there's still no justification for considering an upset here.
Bully Boy was comfortably beaten by Van Gerwen in the World Championship final on New Year's Day, meaning he's now lost 15 of his last 17 meetings with the world No. 1.
That includes four defeats out of four in the Premier League, the most recent of which was an 11-4 mauling in last year's final at the O2.
MVG was in ominous form as he won a fifth consecutive Masters on Sunday, hitting five checkouts of 124 or more in the semis and final, including two maximum finishes of 170.
PETER WRIGHT v ROB CROSS
Cross to win & over 10.5 legs in match
This is the closest match of the night to call, but I'd much rather side with Cross.
He's played Wright eight times since lifting last year's World Championship, winning five and drawing one.
That run includes his first ever Premier League win, which just so happened to be in Newcastle, and a draw in Rotterdam when he led 5-2.
There's not much between them in terms of finishing or 180s, but one thing that you can bank on is that it ought to be close.
Visit Betway's darts betting page.