Hamilton v Whitlock: A grudge match with no grudge
It is anything but a grudge match as these two aren’t the type to hold anything against an opponent, but there is certainly a keen rivalry developing between the pair of Simon Whitlock and Andy Hamilton.
This rivalry has stemmed from some very high profile games between the two that the Hammer has managed to win in sensational but heart-breaking fashion for the Wizard.
Most recently in the semi-finals of the World Championships Hamilton looked a beaten man at 5-3 behind in a race to six against Whitlock having lost the last two sets 3-0. The Englishman wasn’t to be denied though rattling off the last three sets to prosper 6-5 and leave the Aussie aghast.
A few months previously the Wizard looked to have wrapped up another big win over Hamilton in the quarter-finals of the World Matchplay at 15-8, but the Hammer miraculously won nine straight legs to pip him to the semi-final post.
Add to this a win in the Grand Prix the previous year and Hamilton has won the last three meetings between the two in front of the television cameras. Whitlock does have the better of the overall record, but the Hammers’ edge on the big stage may well be playing on his mind.
Form-wise in this competition though Whitlock has a clear advantage winning his last two, whilst Hamilton hasn’t won in his last five or picked up any points in his last three and finds himself second bottom in the table.
For this reason The Wizard is a strong favourite at best price 4/7 with Hamilton out at 3/1, which is one of the longest prices you will see in this competition where Taylor isn’t involved. I have to agree with the bookies, as although Andy has pulled off some sensational results against Whitlock he cannot afford the poor starts he has produced in those games in this short format.
The odds on a win for the Aussie obviously aren’t too tempting but the 5/6 on him to hit the most 180s looks good to me.
• Lewis v Hamilton: Jackpot to roll on
• Wade v Whitlock: Back the maximums
• Painter v Taylor: A potential whitewash
• Taylor v Wade: Machine can handle Power
• Lewis v Painter: Do or die time for Jackpot
• Anderson v Van Barneveld: Dutchman is most reliable bet
• Anderson v Whitlock: Aussie to spoil the party
• Wade v Lewis: Revenge of the Machine
• Taylor v Hamilton: No relent in Power surge
• Van Barneveld v Painter: A Scottish homecoming
• 20/1 for another record-breaking average
• Painter v Hamilton: Tight match too close to call
• Lewis v Whitlock: Another Jackpot draw
• Wade v Barney: Form lines favour Dutchman
• Taylor v Anderson: Value in Power 180s