It is quarter final day at the PDC World Darts Championship on Sunday with all four matches being played over two juicy sessions of play inside the Alexandra Palace, with the first two of them coming in the afternoon as semi-final spots are on the line.
The format has increased once again and the quality should do likewise with the reward for the winners being a cool £100,000 and the chance to play for even more over the next few days. That should add to the competitiveness of the two matches.
Dimitri Van den Bergh vs Nathan Aspinall
The opening match of the day sees two of the better younger players in the game doing battle for a spot in the last four when the Belgian ace Dimitri Van den Bergh takes on the UK Open champion Nathan Aspinall over the best of nine sets.
Both these men have shown their prowess on the big stage. Van den Bergh is a former quarter finalist in this tournament while Aspinall was a semi-finalist here last year before going on and winning the UK Open and the US Darts Masters and both have been in great form this week which is encouraging for those of us who want a good match. These two have met three times in the past with Aspinall winning on all three occasions and Van den Bergh not really getting close.
Aspinall started this tournament off steadily but the longer it has gone on the more relentless he has become and the better he has looked. Van den Bergh has played well throughout in terms of his numbers but he has had more high and low points than his opponent. That makes me think Aspinall will win this and cover a 1.5 set handicap in the process. His leg on leg consistency can prove too strong here.
Luke Humphries vs Peter Wright
The second quarter final of the afternoon is a clash between youth and experience but one which is full of intrigue as the World Youth champion Luke Humphries takes on the former finalist of this tournament in the shape of Peter Wright.
Both these men were afforded let offs in the previous round, although to be fair for three sets Wright looked unstoppable against Jeffrey de Zwaan but then he faded and allowed his opponent to force a decider while Humphries was down and out against Kim Huybrechts who inexplicably gave him a chance to take out a 146 checkout and collapsed in a heap afterwards, so it will be interesting to see who maintains their consistency the best here as that will deliver the winner.
You’ve got to think Wright’s ability to sustain top gear for longer will see him home here but Humphries has that knack of banging in a 180 when he is seemingly out of a leg that will get him back in it and that can annoy and break opponents after a while. It is the 180 angle I’m targeting here as both are heavy scorers. Humphries ploughed in 10 in his last 16 match and Wright bettered that by two. Over 17.5 180s feels an achievable target here.
WON – Back N.Aspinall (-1.5 sets) to beat D.Van den Bergh for a 4/10 stake at 1.95 with Betfred
WON – Back L.Humphries vs P.Wright – Over 17.5 180s for a 4/10 stake at 1.91 with William Hill
Back it here: