Lewis v Hamilton: Jackpot building up nicely
It is an all Stoke affair in Blackpool on Friday evening as Adrian Lewis and Andy Hamilton battle it out for a place in the semi-finals of the World Matchplay at the Winter Gardens.
In truth both have had pretty straight forward routes to the final eight although neither would admit that statement. Hamilton has been playing somewhere near his best, consistently averaging in the high 90s and that was far too much for Ronnie Baxter in round one and then another Stokie, Ian White in round two.
Lewis was nowhere near his A-game in his initial contest but Ronny Huybrechts didn’t really turn up and Jackpot cantered to a 10-5 win. Similarly in round two the world number three did not need to be anywhere near his best but still strolled to a comfortable win over an out of sorts Brendan Dolan who missed far too many doubles.
As a result this is one of the lower-key quarter finals as neither have really laid down a serious marker to win the event but these are two men in the top six in the world and there is no reason why this one could not steal the show in the last eight.
It is no surprise that Lewis is the favourite for this one given his major winning ability and he is a best price of 8/13 with Sporting Bet but the bookies clearly respect the chances of the Hammer as he is not too far behind at a best of 6/4 with Ladbrokes.
The difference between the two men is that we are all well aware that Lewis has at least two more gears to step up from his performances in the first two rounds, whereas it is not too often that you will see Hamilton pushing much further than his 97 average so far. Lewis has not needed to do any better than he has already because his opponents have been poor, but against the Hammer he will certainly improve.
The head-to-head record is certainly in favour of the double world champion as well with him not only winning more than the Hammer has when they have met but also having won on their last four meetings. Three times they have battled it out this year, twice in the Premier League and once earlier this month at the European Championship which Lewis won comfortably.
It is a race to 16 in the quarter-finals and in last year’s last eight, despite matches feeling very tight, none went closer than 16-13. Lewis is available at evens for this one on a -2.5 handicap with Bet365 and that looks like a very good price on the European champ.
Adrian Lewis (-2.5) to win @ evens with Bet365
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