The next stop in the Premier League Darts season is Cardiff and we have match-by-match predictions, best bets, stats and suggested accas.
Rob Cross and Michael van Gerwen collide in a top-of-the-table clash at the Motorpoint Arena in Cardiff but behind them is an extremely congested race to reach the Play-Offs.
Of course, with five rounds of fixtures remaining, the leading duo are not assured a spot at The O2 but it'll require quite a collapse from either player not to make it so it's now looking like two from four to join them.
James Wade, Gerwyn Price, Mensur Suljovic and Daryl Gurney are all level on 12 points - four behind second-placed MVG - while Peter Wright and Michael Smith, who languish on nine and eight points respectively, must realistically win pretty much all their games to stand a chance.
As always, I'lI run through all five fixtures, complete with head-to-head records, season stats so far, match verdicts, suggested bets and accas - plus a reminder of how the table looks.
Premier League Night 12: Thursday April 18
Click on the odds for more Sky Bet match markets
- TV Coverage: Sky Sports (1900 GMT)
- Format: Maximum of 14 legs
Treble: Gurney, Smith & Wade at 10/1
Four Fold: Gurney, Cross, Smith & Wade at 48/1
Draw no bet accas: The above two accas at 5/1 and 20/1 respectively
Tournament Average: 95.54 - 96.78
Best Average: 101.38 - 104.05
Tournament 180s: 29 - 29
Checkout %: 41.33% (62/150) - 39.04% (57/146)
High Checkout: 136 - 140
Meetings since start of 2018: 1-2
PDC Titles Since Start of 2018: 2-2
Career Titles: 5-4
First up tonight is a crucial clash between two of the four players locked together on 12 points in the race to reach Finals Night.
At first glance it looks a very tough match to call but I'm pretty strong about Daryl Gurney's chances to land a decisive blow against a player he just about has the edge over in a couple of important factors.
Although the overall tournament stats above look pretty similar, in recent weeks SuperChin has been playing better darts - both in the Premier League and the Pro Tour - and he'll be confident of carrying this form into Thursday night.
Gurney won his maiden European title last month as well as reaching a Players Championship final, while in this tournament he's won three, including a 7-3 triumph over Suljovic, and drawn once in his last five to thrust himself into the reckoning for the play-offs.
Although he drew last Thursday against James Wade despite averaging 14 points higher with 104, at least his scoring is where he wants it to be, unlike Suljovic.
The Gentle has also won three of his last five, albeit losing twice, but a harsh critic would put all of those down to his opponents - Michael Smith (85.34, Rob Cross (92.83) and James Wade (85.76) - playing well below par and seven days ago he was soundly beaten 8-5 by Price with an average of 88.
Gurney to win and hit the most 180s at 9/4 is where I'm going in this opener.
Scoreline Prediction: 5-8
Suggested Bet: Gurney to win with most 180s at 9/4
Tournament Average: 100.47 - 101.14
Best Average: 104.71 - 109.11
Tournament 180s: 36 - 32
Checkout %: 43.83% (71/162) - 44.38% (71/160)
High Checkout: 164 - 132
Meetings since start of 2018: 1-5
PDC Titles Since Start of 2018: 2-23
Career Titles: 7-121
The formidable Michael van Gerwen turned up last week when an average of 109.11 helped him destroy Michael Smith 8-3 and there's no doubting how intent and motivated he is to regain top spot in the Premier League.
In his previous six seasons, MVG has always finished at the summit of the table and although he's only got five weeks left to keep that record in tact, you'd expect him to stay there if he manages to complete the double over current leader Rob Cross on Thursday night.
The defending champion crushed Cross 7-2 in a disappointingly one-sided affair back in Dublin, when Voltage was well below the usual standard he's lived up to this year, but on current form it should be a lot closer.
The Hastings man has averaged over 100 in eight of his 11 matches so far - one more than MVG - and produced another world-class performance in defeating Peter Wright 8-5 in Liverpool last week.
Although Cross does have a poor head-to-head record against the world champion, losing 13 of their 16 matches, most of those came when he was finding his feet during his maiden PDC season - until he won the 'big one' at the end of it - and then in what proved to be a difficult 2018 campaign.
Their last meeting - in the European Darts Open final - was perhaps one of the few occasions when Cross headed into it feeling like his confident best and he only just lost 8-6, averaging over 100.
I reckon he'll claim a lead extending victory in Cardiff but if you want something even bolder than the 7/2 then how about 5/1 on him to win, score over 2.5 180s and have a checkout of over 78.5. Surely if he's to get two points, he'll have to play well enough to achieve these targets.
Alternatively he's 5/2 in the draw no bet market if you want a bit of a safety net.
Scoreline Prediction: 8-6
Suggested Bet: Cross to win, score over 2.5 180s and have a checkout of over 78.5 at 5/1
Tournament Average: 96.26 - 95.86
Best Average: 100.78 - 104.11
Tournament 180s: 36 - 37
Checkout %: 39.44% (56/142) - 41.67% (65/156)
High Checkout: 150 - 147
Meetings since start of 2018: 3-2
PDC Titles Since Start of 2018: 3-4
Career Titles: 11-6
Gerwyn Price has probably forgotten what it's like to get a warm - perhaps even rousing - reception from the crowd but he'll surely be getting one in Cardiff on Thursday night.
The Iceman admitted in a recent interview with the Darts Show Podcast that the booing, which reached fever pitch during and after the Grand Slam of Darts controversy last year, has been hard to deal with even if he has won a good chunk of supporters over with some highly entertaining performances this season.
He also told www.pdc.tv: "It will be a great feeling to play in front of a Welsh crowd. I'm so used to being booed I won't know how to take it! I may still get a few boos but I think the majority of the fans will be on my side. Obviously it will be a very different environment for me but hopefully I will thrive on the support as well as I cope with the negativity against me most weeks."
The former rugby player is in a pretty good place performance-wise having bounced back from the disappointment of missing two match darts for a first ever win over Michael van Gerwen by defeating Mensur Suljovic last Thursday which keeps him firmly in the hunt for a top four spot.
Sure, the weekend didn't bring him much joy but he was quite unfortunate really, averaging 103 in a first-round defeat to Aaron Monk on Saturday before losing a last-leg decider to Danny Noppert on Sunday despite recording a mark of 105.2!
Michael Smith will be fired up to ruin Price's big night as he targets the victory he desperately needs to retain a glimmer of hope that he still just about has.
Before last week's clash with Michael van Gerwen, Bully Boy claimed he needed to win all his remaining games but although he lost that one pretty badly, all is not lost quite yet.
Smith has averaged 100 in his last three Premier League games since beating Price 7-5 but having caught both James Wade and MVG at the wrong time, the only point he gained felt like a defeat as Wright pinched a draw despite averaging 10 points lower.
In the last four Players Championship events, he's reached two finals and one semi-final - losing the lot to James Wade - so there can be little down his performances have been a lot better than the Premier League table suggests.
It was Smith's sloppy start to the campaign that got him into this mess but if he comes through this test then a dramatic late run to the play-offs must not be ruled out.
This should be a cracking contest that goes deep so I'd expect him to achieve the fairly modest player performance targets of hitting over 3.5 180s and having a checkout of more than 84.5. Combined with the victory, that's 3/1.
Scoreline Prediction: 8-6
Suggested Bet: Smith to win, hit more than 3.5 180s and a checkout over 84.5 at 3/1
Tournament Average: 96.30 - 98.76
Best Average: 106.64 - 109.59
Tournament 180s: 32 - 35
Checkout %: 44.12% (60/136) - 46.81% (66/141)
High Checkout: 150 - 132
Head-to-head: 18-17 (1 draw)
Meetings since start of 2018: 2-2 (1 draw)
PDC Titles Since Start of 2018: 2-5
Career Titles: 22-33
Although they were his first titles of the year, success had been coming when you consider he'd reached the latter stages of several Pro Tour events as well as his superb Premier League campaign so far.
In fact if you go back to when he ended a near five-year drought for a big TV title at last October's European Championship, the World Series of Darts king has won five of the last 21 tournaments - the same as Michael van Gerwen!
The caveat to this is, of course, that MVG didn't compete in any of the last eight Players Championship events but nevertheless, compared to everyone else Wade is looking extremely sharp at the moment - both statistically and with his trademark timing ability.
In typical Wade fashion, he managed to earn a draw last week against Daryl Gurney despite averaging just 90 compared to his opponent's 104 but he's generally been playing much better than that so expect an improved display against Wright.
Snakebite is in desperate need of a win and will be in big trouble if he fails to do so but it's so hard to predict if he'll throw hot or cold.
He averaged over 100 in last week's defeat to Cross and at the weekend his performances were once again inconsistent as he failed to get beyond the last 16 in either event.
I'm giving the edge to Wade here but another bet worth considering is this match to have over 12.5 legs, a high checkout of over 108.5 and more than 5.5 180s, which is 7/4.
Scoreline Prediction: 5-8
Suggested Bet: Match to have over 12.5 legs, highest checkout to be over 108.5 and over 5.5 total 180s at 7/4
2019 Premier League Darts Table
- Cross P 11 W 8 D 1 L 2 LegD +23 Pts 17
- Van Gerwen P 11 W 7 D 2 L 2 LegD +27 Pts 16
- Wade P 11 W 4 D 4 L 3 LegD +8 Pts 12
- Price P 11 W 4 D 4 L 3 LegD +2 Pts 12
- Suljovic P 11 W 5 D 2 L 4 LegD +1 Pts 12
- Gurney P 11 W 5 D 2 L 4 LegD -2 Pts 12
- Wright P 11 W 2 D 5 L 4 LegD -8 Pts 9
- Smith P 11 W 3 D 2 L 6 LegD -11 Pts 8
- Relegated: Van Barneveld P 9 W 1 D 2 L 6 LegD -22 Pts 4