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A new season,a new format! We have second season syndrome and news from Wimbledon!

Premier League Darts 2013

Posted: 07.02.13 in Tournament Analysis Blog category

A new season,a new format! We have second season syndrome and news from Wimbledon!

 
 

 

A new season and a new format, who would of guessed? The PDC is fond of amending the format of tournaments; it is not always a success. We have just had the Darts World Cup for example-the tournament started with the teams playing each other in pairs and ended with England winning the cup via four single matches!

This is bizarre as the earlier round matches are completely different disciplines to the final matches. It is like playing 11 a side in the first rounds of the FA Cup and then switching to five aside for the semi finals onwards. Yes if it had been level after the four singles games then the pairs would have decided the home of the World Cup but why did single matches take precedent over a team match in a team competition?

Darts ignoring the concept of pairs play has prompted a surprise development in the world of tennis; I have just read an announcement from the organisers of the Wimbledon tennis championships. Apparently they are going to rename the Wimbledon Doubles Championships the Wimbledon Singles Championships! They save themselves a packet on prize money and if it rains, who cares, they have far fewer games so can squeeze them in! Genius!

On the other hand the amendments to the Premier League do seem like exciting innovations. There are two additional players (The Thorn and The Warrior), it is now the best of 12 legs (14 legs previously) and the bottom two after 9 weeks will be relegated. Although like the impact on Belgium’s chances of winning the World Cup once the team element had been more or less eliminated from the equation, this change will have an effect in different ways on this year’s tournament.

For example will the shorter format mean there will be more drawn matches? With the calibre of the players logically you would say yes. They “only” now have to both win their throw six times on the bounce and hey presto, match drawn. However, draws have been a fairly rare commodity in the Premier League so that will be worth following. Also another rare event is the whitewash. This has happened just three times over the years. Statistically the chances have increased slightly of it happening this year.

The most exciting amendment is the relegation aspect. This should add some much needed drama as the season progresses. Just as in the football Premier League the “new boys” are the favourites for the drop. I found a mail-online article about the 59 clubs that have been promoted to the football Premiership since it began (1992). 26 of these (44%) were relegated after their first season. A further 7 (12%) suffered second season syndrome and were relegated the next year.

Last year it was chalk and cheese, one new boy Kevin Painter was second from bottom and the other Andy Hamilton got through to the play offs. The season before Mark Webster had a first season to forget winning just two of his fourteen matches. These statistics (if darts relegation statistics are going to follow football) make it slightly easier to comprehend The Hammer being one of the favourites for relegation. Do the bookies think he is going to be hit with second season syndrome?

The Thorn is the favourite for relegation (6/4),then Newton and Hamilton (13/8). Wade is 3/1 and he of course remains something of an enigma. He has been showing flashes of his usual brilliance but we don’t really know how far he is down the path of recovering or at least managing the concerns he has had off the oche. A long long way all darts fans hope of course, but the relentless nature of the Premier League format will be a big challenge for The Machine.

I don’t usually ever read any other reviews or blogs (until I have posted mine) for fear of being influenced in some way. I did however take a peek at one that recommended Lewis for the drop at 7/1. Yes he has been “out of sorts” for a while and we only saw one match of sustained Lewis brilliance in the World Cup but...

In fact I like the look of Lewis in the 180’s market. Mighty Mike is a big favourite to hit the most (7/4) with Lewis at 13/2. Van G can hit 180’s, of course he can. His ratio (legs per 180’s thrown) though in the Worlds for example is strikingly similar to Lewis’s ratio in last year’s Premier League and Lewis struggled through that. Maybe the +6 for Lewis in the handicap betting at 7/1 is the way forward here?

At the other end of the table you cannot look much further than The Power and Mighty Mike can you? Taylor (9/4) looks back to his brilliant best. Van Gerwen (7/2) who hasn’t yet got the consistency of Taylor can destroy anyone, including The Power on his day.

One more tip, if you are thinking of putting a cheeky bet on the Premier League Darts then check out the bwin darts betting site today.

The new look Premier League kicks off tonight and like all aspects of life innovation is a great way to progress and improve, even if there are a few mistakes along the way. Let the relegation dogfight begin!

Tips

Taylor to win                               9/4 (General)

Newton to be relegated                7/4 (General)

Lewis most 180’s handicap +6     7/1 

 

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Author: Paul Gillings ( paul@dartsperformancecentre.com )