Part v Painter: Heavyweight match could go either way
To reach the third round of the World Championships a player clearly has to be in a pretty decent run of form, but in John Part and Kevin Painter, we have two players who are putting in their best performances in recent memory.
Part’s record at the World Championships since winning it back in 2008 has been woeful, going out in the first round twice and the second round in between. However, he has had a much tougher draw this year with a strong first round opponent in John Henderson and then being second favourite against Richie Burnett in the last 32, and he has sailed through with no drama whatsoever.
With three wins in the Players Championship tournaments over the year, it looks like things are all coming together nicely for Darth Maple whose experience in match-play darts is shining through. His averages of 88 and 91 in the tournament so far are not earth shattering, but he has only dropped one set, showing he knows exactly what is needed from him at each juncture.
Painter was dealt an equally tricky draw over the first two rounds and conquered his foes in a different but equally impressive way. His victory over Aaron Monk was fairly routine, but his battling win over Mark Walsh last week was as hard fought a success as you are likely to see, and proves he has all the qualities needed to go far in the tournament.
Not that the Artist needs to prove he has these qualities; after his £60,000 success at the Players Championship last month he is clearly in a serious purple patch, and he reached the final of the Worlds back in 2004 so he can handle the biggest stage in the sport.
What may be playing on his mind though is that he has reached two semi-finals of the World Championships, and on both occasions he lost to his opponent on Thursday, John Part. In fact, Part has won 10 of the 12 contests between the two since their last four clash back in 2003.
Despite this, Painter is odds on favourite for the match at best price 4/6 whereas you can back the Canadian at 6/4. There is next to nothing in it really and although Part was in a similar situation in the last round against Burnett, he won comfortably, so I would hesitate to rule him out.
The one trend that does seem to be appearing is that Painter will score the better average, so backing this at 4/7 is one of the safer options in a match that could so easily go either way.
• Whitlock v Hamilton: Progressive Hammer offers value
• Lewis v Wade: Machine has edge over Jackpot
• Hamilton v Huybrechts: Hurricane has got darts in a spin
• Whitlock v Anderson: A potential classic
• Part v Wade: Omens are good for Darth Maple
• Lewis v Jenkins: Bull to charge Jackpot
• Anderson v Lloyd: Jaws to snap Scot's dreams
• Chisnall v Hamilton: After the Lord Mayor's show
• Whitlock v Van Gerwen: Mighty Mike too quick for wounded Wizard
• Nicholson v Huybrechts: Asset to tame The Hurricane
• Wade v Farmer: Machine to halt Farmer
• Jenkins v Pipe: The Bull to be Forced out
• Lewis v Jones: Wanderer to push Jackpot
• Rand v Lloyd: Jaws unable to snap Cool Hand
• Whitlock v Beaton: Wizard too hot for Adonis
• King v Van Gerwen: Merv has his game face on
• Nicholson v Tabern Betting
• Burnett v Part: Champions to battle to the death
• Jenkins v Stompe: In-form duo to go the distance
• Van der Voort v Hamilton: Hammer to knock out Lightening
• Taylor v Chisnall: Chizzy to push The Power
• Wade v Klaasen: Machine to show his Klaas
• Painter v Walsh: Maximums aplenty in long match
• Lewis v Thornton: A Thorn in the Champ's side
• Jones v Scholten: Tripod to destabilise The Wanderer
• Newton v Pipe: The Force is with The Warrior
• Whitlock v Smith: Wizard to cast his spell
• Osborne v Van Gerwen: Mighty Mike looks mighty fine
• Smith v Rand: Evenly matched players to go the distance
• Anderson v Artut: No dramas for Dreamboy
• Lloyd v Young: Colin in the Jaws of defeat
• Painter v Monk: After the Lord Mayor's show
• Hamilton v Alcinas: El Dartador to knock out the Hammer
• Van Barneveld v Richardson: Dutch delight at favourite venue
• Chisnall v Dudbridge: Chizzy to finish it in a Flash
• Nicholson v Suljovic: Maximums to flow
• Baxter v Farmer: Tight match to produce maximums
• Van der Voort v Hylton: Mile High provides the value
• Thornton v White: Diamond to rough up the Thorn
• Wright v Klaasen: Jelle wobbling on a slippery slope
• Stompe v Smith: Matchstick to burn brightly
• Pipe v Reed: Justin to Force out Reed
• Caven v Scholten: Jabba the punt
• Lewis v Heydon: Champ to progress in facile fashion
• Webster v Burnett: Spider to boss battle of the valleys
• Barney sets sights on focussing mind
• New darts give Snakebite improved confidence
• Taylor odds unaltered despite early exit