The European Darts Matchplay continues on Saturday and as ever with these European Tour events the last 32 is the schedule of play on the middle day of the tournament, with spots in the final day the reward on offer.
The Mannheim crowds get to see the likes of Michael van Gerwen, Adrian Lewis, Peter Wright and all the seeded players for the first time while there are some local players who have made it through too on what should be a good day of darts.
The action begins with Dave Chisnall looking to make progress. He takes on the competent qualifier Ryan Meikle before Jonny Clayton takes to the stage looking to turn his recent form around when he goes up against Scott Taylor. James Wade is the third seeded player onto the stage. He takes on the largely unknown Bradley Brooks before the big names keep on coming as Adrian Lewis goes up against Dirk van Duijvenbode to lead us into the break.
The BDO world champion Glen Durrant takes us out of the interval when he meets the World Cup player Cody Harris before the big match of the afternoon takes place. That sees Daryl Gurney meeting John Henderson. Two more matches follow them to round off the afternoon. Gerwyn Price meets Simon Stevenson in a decent looking match before the newly crowned World Matchplay champion Rob Cross goes up against Marvin Wedler.
The evening session starts off with the lightning fast Ricky Evans looking to make it through. He meets Karsten Koch for a place in Sunday’s play. Some really good matches follow them with Ian White taking on the home star Gabriel Clemens before Krzysztof Ratajski meets Keegan Brown. The tie of the round sees Michael van Gerwen going up against Michael Smith and that is the fourth match on the evening schedule which takes us into the break.
The quality keeps on coming after the break with the winner in Austria last week, Mensur Suljovic, up next. He meets Kim Huybrechts before Peter Wright goes up against the beaten finalist of this event last season in Wililam O’Connor. UK Open champion Nathan Aspinall takes to the stage in the penultimate match of the night. He faces the veteran Wayne Jones before the last match of a busy Saturday sees Joe Cullen meeting Jamie Hughes.
There isn’t a huge amount that I like on the Saturday card but there is one bet that I’m going to go with and it comes in the evening session where Krzysztof Ratajski could be a little vulnerable to Keegan Brown. I like Ratajski and think he’s good and has the potential to be very good but at the minute his best form seems to be coming on the floor rather than the stage.
He has played in most of the European Tour events and the TV tournaments this year but hasn’t made a quarter final in any of them whereas on the floor he’s won four titles in the last 12 months. There has to be something in that and ironically he goes up against an opponent here who is the opposite. Brown’s better darts tend to come on the stage. The Englishman had a good win over Simon Whitlock on Friday and can build on that on Saturday. We often see Brown raise his game on the stage so he has that if he needs it but the recent stage form of the man from Poland suggests that Brown may not need to be brilliant to win this. However he needs to play I see the 6/4 as some value.
Back K.Brown to beat K.Ratajski for a 4/10 stake at 2.50 with Betfred
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