Bomber Brown to destroy Smith
It may not be the standout contest of the evening on Wednesday but the outstanding value of the night is without a doubt in the opening match between Andy Smith and Steve Brown with the latter going in as second favourite.
Brown has not had a great year by any means on the tour but he got here through the Pro Tour which means he has won a fair few games over the last 12 months even if he hasn’t gone on to win tournaments. Smith has had his usual kind of year, pretty decent on the floor but making no impression at all on the stage.
In truth there is very little between these two players but Smith is renowned for falling at the first hurdle at major events and with Brown available at 6/5 with Bet Victor he is certainly worth backing.
The biggest name of the night is Adrian Lewis who is the huge favourite to see off the veteran Dennis Smith and cruise into round two, however, it may not be as easy as the bookies are suggesting with Lewis a best price of 1/16 with Boyle Sports.
Smith has regained some form this year whilst Lewis has been something of a slow starter at the Ally Pally over the last couple of years which means, although Jackpot should win, he may not have it all his own way against the wily old campaigner. Over 3.5 sets is an outrageous price of 2/1 with Bet365 and that should be taken all day long.
The preliminary contest of the evening sees the legend of the game Paul Lim return to the big stage to face Japanese qualifier Morihiro Hashimoto with Lim the narrow favourite. The Singapore Slinger got through this round last year but struggled a little on stage and Hashimoto is a very competent player. This one could really go either way but a safe bet is over 5.5 legs which is available at 4/7 with Paddy Power. The winner of that clash will go on to face Michael Smith and either will struggle against the talented youngster.
The other game on Wednesday evening sees Justin Pipe take on the talented but erratic Aaron Monk for a place in the second round. A year or two ago this would be seen as a much tighter contest but Monk has gone off the boil somewhat and has not had a good year on the tour. Pipe, in contrast, has continued his rise up the rankings and is now a fixture of the world’s top 16.
Pipe may not look like a likely 180-hitter with his immensely slow action but he can score with the best in the world and is usually worth backing in the maximum market. If Monk can find some form then he is no slouch either and over 6.5 180s looks a great price at 11/10 with Paddy Power.
Steve Brown to win @ 6/5 with Bet Victor
Adrian Lewis v Dennis Smith over 3.5 sets @ 2/1 with Bet365
Morihiro Hashimoto v Paul Lim over 5.5 legs @ 4/7 with Paddy Power
Justin Pipe v Aaron Monk over 6.5 180s @ 11/10 with Paddy Power
• MVG must hit the heights to beat Wright
• Lewis to get the better of MVG
• Wade and Lewis set for another classic
• Newton can out-180 Wright
• Saturday afternoon to be a 180-fest
• Whitlock and Painter to fire in the maximums
• Pipe to win dance-off with Petersen
• Jackpot and Dutch Destroyer to turn on the style
• Part no pushover for Newton
• Painter and Nicholson to go all the way
• Taylor bullied and beaten by Smith
• Burnett can push the Hammer in round two
• Barney and Caven could produce classic
• Webster in trouble against Suljovic
• MVG and Whitlock to stroll through
• Baxter to be swamped by Evans
• Caven to out Klaas Jelle
• Nicholson and Kellett could go all the way
• Walsh in trouble against Komula
• Wright and Cullen can steal the show
• Taylor will prove he is still King of the world