Taylor and van Gerwen Set for Rumble in Rotterdam

Phil Taylor and Michael van Gerwen will battle it out to finish top of the Premier League.

The Premier League of Darts makes a trip to Rotterdam this week for the final night’s action before the play offs. It’s the first time the Premier League has visited the Netherlands, and it promises to be a big occasion for the country’s two stars, Michael van Gerwen and Raymond van Barneveld.

The script could hardly have been written better with MVG going up against Taylor in a winner-takes-all match that will decide who tops the table and wins the £25,000 prize for first place. The Dutch number one currently leads Taylor by leg difference with the pair locked together on 24 points, and it will be an excellent finale to a great night in the Rotterdam Ahoy. Unfortunately for Barneveld, his chances of making the play offs have long since passed, but he will still be determined to put on a show for his home crowd and his match against Peter Wright will also go a long way to deciding who takes fourth place in the league and the final play off spot.

Wright is a point behind Adrian Lewis in the table and nothing less than a win will do. He will then have to hope Lewis is beaten by Gary Anderson in the subsequent match so that he can leapfrog his rival. Anderson has already sewn up third place, but Lewis has a job on his hands to secure at least the point that he needs to confirm his play off position.

With so many tight matches to call it may pay to go with some outside bets this week in the Premier League, and it would be no huge surprise if both Dutch players raise their game in front of a partisan Dutch crowd.

Phil Taylor v Michael van Gerwen

We rarely back draws in the Premier League, but the game between Taylor and van Gerwen is so evenly balanced that the draw appeals at  +420  with Marathonbet.

Taylor headed the table for a long period this season, but van Gerwen’s unbeaten run since the opening night has seen him slowly claw his way back into contention and overtake Taylor by the finest of margins. MVG has a leg differential of +40 compared to Taylor’s +37, so a point will be enough for him to secure 1st place.

Taylor must win to overtake his rival but that is a tall order at any time against van Gerwen, particularly in this arena where he will be fired up to put on a good show. The two players couldn’t be separated last time they met in the Premier League in March, playing out a 6-6 draw of high quality, and it could be another stalemate on Thursday night.

Peter Wright v Raymond van Barneveld

Raymond van Barneveld is a big price at  +210  with BoyleSports to get the better of Peter Wright, which reflects the fact that the latter must win to have any chance of reaching the play offs.

However, there is value in backing Barney, who on his day is capable of beating anyone, and who will also be fired up to win in front of a home crowd. It will be a raucous atmosphere and one that should favour the Dutchman. It hasn’t been a sterling season for Barneveld, who has no chance of repeating his top four finish from last term, but he will be keen to go out with a bang and playing without pressure can sometimes aid good performances.

Wright has come back into a decent patch of form after a muddling Premier League season, and last week’s 7-1 demolition of James Wade helped keep his play off hopes alive while crushing those of his opponent. He simply must win here to overtake Adrian Lewis, and then hope that Lewis drops the game against Anderson later. Lewis has a +5 advantage in leg difference, so should qualify even with a draw unless Wright pulls out a thumping win over Barney.

At the odds it’s worth a small stake on van Barneveld to spoil the party for Wright and win this particular match.

Adrian Lewis v Gary Anderson

If that happens there will be nothing riding on this match and it could pay to side with Gary Anderson at  -125  with Betfred888Sport and Totesport

It would be a tall order for Lewis to beat the reigning World Champion at any time, and his chances shouldn’t be overstated simply because he needs the win and Anderson doesn’t. If Wright fails to win the prior match, this result will matter little anyway as Lewis will already be confirmed in the top four, and that would tilt the balance in Anderson’s favour.

If this were a game where both players needed points the price on the Scotsman would be a fair bit shorter, and he’s worth backing at close to evens to follow up his 7-4 win over Lewis earlier in the season.

Tips Summary

Phil Taylor and Michael van Gerwen to Draw
Thursday 12th May, 18:00 GMT Start
Odds:  +420

Raymond van Barneveld to beat Peter Wright
Thursday 12th May, 18:00 GMT Start
Odds:  +210

Gary Anderson to beat Adrian Lewis
Thursday 12th May, 18:00 GMT Start
Odds:  -125

betway premier league
gary anderson
michael van gerwen
phil taylor
raymond van barneveld

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