World Matchplay Darts: Saturday predictions, odds, betting tips, order of play & TV times

Check out our best bets for day one of the World Matchplay
Check out our best bets for day one of the World Matchplay

The 25th staging of the prestigious World Matchplay gets under way on Saturday night so here's the full order of play, predictions, Sky Bet odds and a suggested accumulator.

There are four matches to get the sport's second biggest televised major up and running at the iconic Winter Gardens in Blackpool, including hot tournament favourite Michael van Gerwen up against Jeffrey de Zwaan.

Below we have tonight's full running order, Chris Hammer's match-by-match previews & predictions as well as his main suggested bets and accumulator.


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World Matchplay: Saturday July 21

Click on the odds for more Sky Bet match markets

  • TV Coverage: Sky Sports (7pm BST)
  • First Round: Best of 19 legs

Adrian Lewis (2/7) v James Wilson (13/5)

Head-to-head: 3-0
2018 meetings: 1-0

It's got to be Jackpot here and I’m really looking forward to seeing him back to somewhere near his best on the big stage.

He dropped out of the world’s top 16 for almost a decade after a terrible 2017 but he’s reached three finals on the circuit this season and I’m sure he’ll even give MVG a run for his money in a potential second round match.

I think he’ll win this match fairly comfortably against a player who hasn’t got a history of doing well in the biggest events. So I’m going to back Lewis minus 3.5 legs on the handicap, which is 6/5.

Prediction: 10-5

Dave Chisnall (4/11) v Keegan Brown (11/5)

Head-to-head: 11-0
2018 meetings: 1-0

This is a potential mini upset on night one, with Chizzy still struggling to find consistent good form after a year which saw him drop out of the Premier League.

That said Chisnall has won all 11 of their previous meetings but bare in mind one of those was this year and the others were 2016 or earlier – so perhaps not worth dwelling too much on.

While we’d all like to see him finally win a major, I don’t think he’ll be too enthused to be in this tough half of the draw and he could bow out early against a good solid opponent.

Prediction: 7-10

Michael van Gerwen (1/50) v Jeffrey de Zwaan (14/1)

Head-to-head: 3-1
2018 meetings: 1-1

Only a fool would back against MVG wouldn’t they?

He’s 1/50 to get off to a winning start but talented youngster Jeffrey de Zwaan has already shocked at the UK Open this year in a best-of-19 legs clash.

De Zwaan has also won a maiden senior title this season so that was no flash in the pan and he has a bright future ahead of him.

Also, as incredible MVG is, we've seen him suffer very early exists in three of the last eight TV majors. It'll be closer than people expect.

Prediction: 10-7

Michael Smith (4/11) v Jonny Clayton (11/5)

Head-to-head: 4-0
2018 meetings: Not played

I’m backing Michael Smith at 33/1 each-way to win this title so naturally I’m confident he’ll do the business against Jonny Clayton, who he's never lost to.

Bully Boy is arriving as a proper top class player this year and what he did in the Premier League – making a mockery of those 80/1 odds to finish runner-up – proves he can mix it with the very best.

I have been impressed with Clayton over the past six months or so and he’s one of the fastest rising players in the sport but Smith will have too much for him.

I’m backing Smith to win and hit the most 180s at 4/5.

Prediction: 10-5

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