Premier League Darts Finals Night: Play-Off Predictions, tips, odds & stats for MVG v Cross & Smith v Anderson from John Part

Last Updated May 17 2018, 20:23Darts
Who will come out on top on Premier League Darts Finals night?
Who will come out on top on Premier League Darts Finals night?

John Part previews Thursday night's Premier League Darts Finals at London's O2, including his semi-final predictions and his tip for outright glory.

The 2018 Premier League Darts reaches its climax on Thursday night, with defending champion Michael van Gerwen facing world champion Rob Cross in the first play-off semi-final before the 80/1 pre-season outsider Michael Smith takes on his mentor and two-time winner Gary Anderson.

Whoever triumphs in those best-of-19-legs matches will then collide over 21 legs with the trophy and a winners' cheque of £250,000 on the line.

Here's three-time world champion John Part's previews both semi-finals and also predicts who he thinks will emerge the champion while there's also player statistics, head-to-head records and how the final table finished.

John Part's selections

Scroll down for his full rundown of each match, helpful stats, H2H records & final table

Michael van Gerwen (1/5) v Rob Cross (7/2)

Head-to-head record

Premier League Darts 2018 stats

  • 3-dart Average: 103.56 - 97.33
  • 180s: 56 - 54
  • 100+ checkouts: 19 - 11
  • Highest checkout: 170 - 144
  • Checkout %: 45.37% (103/227) - 44.85% (87/194)

MVG has just been too dominant against Rob Cross, winning 10 of their 12 meetings, and I see him extending that run in this semi-final.

One of Rob’s two wins was obviously that epic World Championship semi-final that went to the last leg, but remember this was set play.

We don’t have many set play tournaments on the tour and I have to believe that one of the main reasons Rob was able to beat him was because of that format.

It just seems a little bit more manageable when you’re being outgunned to still win. It’s sort of a lifeline – you can hang in there better.

But without that lifeline if you will, I think MVG might be rampant in this first to 10 legs semi-final.

Especially after MVG gave him a bit of a slap last week in Aberdeen.

I like the bet where he wins, hits over 5.5 180s and a checkout of over 120.5 which is 3/1. It seems quite feasible and none of it seems to be a stretch for me.

You can also get 5/1 on there being two or more bull finishes in the match and I really like that bet.

Michael Smith (2/1) v Gary Anderson (2/5)

Head-to-head record

Premier League Darts 2018 stats

  • 3-dart Average: 95.21 - 99.11
  • 180s: 41 - 57
  • 100+ checkouts: 10 - 17
  • Highest checkout: 160 - 170
  • Checkout %: 42.45% (90/212) - 42.04% (95/226)

I have to believe that Gary Anderson’s dominance will continue in his protégé-mentor rivalry with Michael Smith.

Sure, Gary lost to him earlier in the season when he had problems with his back, which evidently affected him, but it that’s the only time Michael is beating him, well that speaks volumes.

Gary also has the big M of momentum after putting MVG in his place last week and he should book his place in the final.

It will happen eventually that Smith will pass Anderson in a crucial match – but because there’s so much dominance until it happens it’s so hard to oppose Gary.

The first bet that catches my eye are Anderson to win, hit six+ 180s and have a checkout of 120+ at 4/1.

And the other is for this match to have 17+ legs, a high checkout of 130+ and 10+ 180s in the match, which is also 4/1.

Scroll down for who John is backing to win the Premier League Darts final

It's the final Sporting Life Darts Podcast of the Premier League season
Click here to listen to our Oscar-style review of the season with John Part

Who will be crowned Premier League Darts champion?

If it is an MVG v Gary Anderson final, like I’ve predicted, then I have to say there’s a shock coming.

And Anderson previewed it for us last week in Aberdeen with that fine win.

There was a point about four years ago when it seemed MVG was scared to play Gary, who had the dominance between them, and that could now be coming back a little.

Michael hasn’t been as great for as much as the time as usual, having lost four games, and he’ll need to produce the kind of form we saw from him in that astonishing win against Anderson earlier in the season, when they both averaged 110.

That was close to the time Anderson was struggling with his back so that wasn’t even him at his best! If Gary can do something similar then this time he could be able to get the job done.

Therefore I’m backing Anderson now at 4/1 although if you wait to see if he’s in the final first, then it might not be too much shorter a price if he’s playing MVG.

Click here for the 2018 Premier League darts results, reports & statistics

Premier League Darts Table

  1. MVG P 16 W 11 D 1 L 4 LegD +43 Pts 23
  2. Smith P 16 W 9 D 2 L 5 LegD +24 Pts 20
  3. Anderson P 16 W 8 D 3 L 5 LegD +15 Pts 19
  4. Cross P 16 W 8 D 3 L 5 LegD +5 Pts 19
  5. Gurney P 16 W 4 D 8 L 4 LegD +1 Pts 16
  6. Barney P 16 W 6 D 4 L 6 LegD -8 Pts 16
  7. Wright P 16 W 4 D 6 L 6 LegD -20 Pts 14
  8. Whitlock P 16 W 5 D 3 L 8 LegD -18 Pts 13
  9. Suljovic P 9 W 2 D 0 L 7 LegD -13 Pts 4
  10. Price P 9 W 0 D 2 L 7 LegD -29 Pts 2

Suljovic and Price were eliminated after Judgement Night

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