Newton v Burnett: Prince to battle the Warrior
Wes Newton and Richie Burnett collide this Thursday night in what is sure to be a tightly contested game. Both players have seen a surge in form over the last year and will go into this tournament confident of building on their year to date, particularly as they sit in the favourable half of the draw, having avoided many of the big guns.
The bookmakers have Newton as the firm favourite at 2/5 on, while Burnett hasn’t been given much of a chance at 5/2. While it should be expected Newton will do enough to win, the form of Burnett seems to be ignored, having reached the semi-finals in Dublin and winning a Pro Tour tournament at the back end of September. Outsider backers may well see some slight value in Burnett.
A more likely outcome however may come on the handicap. The Welshman is priced up at 4/6 with a 2.5 legs head start on Newton. In a race to six, this could prove invaluable. The Prince of Wales showed some gritty battling qualities in his run at the Grand Prix, even taking a couple of sets from Phil Taylor, and will no doubt be silently confident with the quiet resurgence of his career.
Newton, however, has also had a productive year. Having reached the final of the UK Open and climbed to number 7 in the World Rankings. Boylesports go 4/5 that we see more than three 180s in a match that could well go the distance providing more opportunities for the big scores to be hit.
Whatever happens, this is sure to be one of the more entertaining matches of the first round and perhaps the tournament. With a noticeably weaker half of the draw on their sides, this may well be the match that includes one of our finalists.
• Webster v Painter: Artist's card is Marked
• Painter v Rand: Cool Hand to brush off the Artist
• Newton v Webster: Webby to entrap the Warrior
• Webster v Chisnall: Match of the round to go the distance
• King v Painter: King to claim his throne
• Anderson v Painter: Artist unlikely to make an impression
• Taylor v King: King to push the Power
• Walsh v Jones: Wanderer to down Special Brew
• Newton v Wright: Wrong odds for Wright
• Webster v Beaton: Possible classic on the cards
• Anderson v Van Gerwen: Scot to edge out youngster
• Taylor v Jenkins: Like a Bull to the slaughter
• Chisnall v Tabern: Chizzy to get revenge
• Wade v Smith: Machine to motor past Pieman
• Baxter v Barney: Out-of-form duo seek solace
• Nicholson v Brown: Consistency gives Asset advantage