Friday quarter-finals to be lengthy battles
One of the biggest stories of the last 16 and indeed the tournament as a whole was Ted Hankey’s comeback against Simon Whitlock. That has set up a clash with Scott Waites in the last eight but it is the current BDO world champ and not the former that is favourite to progress.
Waites has been consistently impressive throughout, winning all four of his contests thus far and was solid enough in seeing off Mark Webster on Wednesday. You now know what you are going to get from the Yorkshireman and that is going to be a mid-90s average that may not be spectacular but will get a job done.
Hankey is much less predictable and even within matches he will flit between brilliance and flinging bags of nails from his unusually right sided stance behind the oche. He has shown that propensity in this tournament, and never more obviously than against Whitlock when he went from awful to awesome to win the match.
Scotty 2 Hotty has admitted he does not like facing Hankey and was ousted from the Lakeside World Championships last time they met there. The world champion remains hot favourite at 1/3 with William Hill though whilst the Count is out at 3/1 with Sporting Bet. Plenty will be taking that price on Ted given how well he has performed, but Waites has battled and beaten him in the past and should not take his bait. Hankey will push him though on current form and the game can go to over 27.5 legs on a race to 16 at a best price of EVENS with Bet365 when it is odds-on elsewhere.
The first quarter-final of Friday night sees Robert Thornton take on Tony O’Shea and that looks set to be even tighter than the other battle on stage. O’Shea is as solid a performer as you are likely to come across and unless someone turns in a display of the very highest calibre then he will not be blown away.
Thornton is playing well and is understandably favourite at a best price of 8/11 with 888sport but he will not be hitting a three figure average so this will be a very close encounter. It could genuinely go either way and the Silverback has shown with 13 maximums in four games that he can beat anyone. A safer bet than backing him though is to back over 27.5 legs again at EVENS with Sky Bet when it is odds-on with every other bookie.
Scott Waites v Ted Hankey over 27.5 legs @ EVENS with Bet365
Robert Thornton v Tony O’Shea over 27.5 legs @ EVENS with Sky Bet
• Taylor powers to fifth Grand Slam title
• Lewis can cut The Power
• Lewis and MVG set for another classic
• Silverback and King can beat the odds
• Hurricane can blow away MVG
• Hankey can count out Smith
• Pipe the man to drain Thornton
• Wright, Huybrechts and Harms can upset the odds
• Lewis can end Taylor run at Grand Slam