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Joe Cullen v James Wade
Time is running out for Joe Cullen to qualify for the play-offs and while his own form is taking a hit, he’s kept in the hunt by the drop-off in form of Peter Wright.
He’ll have his hands full here with James Wade who has more or less qualified, barring a miraculous last couple of nights from both Wright and Cullen, and victory here would seal that top four spot for certain.
Cullen has won just three of his last 10 matches though and may be a tall order to win three on the bounce here against some of the best players on the circuit, especially when two of those victories came against players outside the top-25.
Wade had a slow start to the campaign, though has been imperious in recent weeks despite a first round defeat last time out against table topper and defending champion Johnny Clayton. He bounced back from that though with a semi-final run on the European Tour, and he’ll be determined to remove any uncertainty from the situation with a win here.
Cullen leads the head-to-heads 6-3, though in the Premier League alone it’s a 2-1 lead for Wade, and on form it’s difficult to see that not extending to three wins here for the Machine.
JAMES WADE TO WIN
Gary Anderson v Gerwyn Price
Neither of these two are really playing for anything but pride in the remaining nights. Anderson managed his first win since Night Six last week when he saw off countryman Peter Wright in the quarters, though it didn’t give him too much momentum as he lost out to the formidable Clayton in the semis to end any hope of a miraculous comeback.
Gerwyn Price’s Premier League woes continue as he’ll likely need to win nine matches on the bounce if he wants to qualify for the play-offs. The Iceman has now lost four of his last five Premier League outings, while his form around this competition hasn’t exactly been scintillating either, with his last title coming at the seventh floor championships at the end of March.
We wouldn’t expect the highest quality contest here, all things considered. These two have the two lowest 180 totals in the league this season with just 70 between them, and an unders bet in that regard looks to be the way to go.
UNDER 5.5 MATCH 180s
Michael van Gerwen v Peter Wright
Arguably the most iconic matchup of a generation sees Michael van Gerwen and Peter Wright lock horns once again, though it’s the former that looks to have the momentum firmly on his side at the moment.
Mighty Mike reached the final again last week, although lost out to Clayton again as the Welshman extended his lead at the top. He got right back on the horse though, winning on the European Tour at the weekend and if we know van Gerwen, he’ll want to finish the Premier League on top of the table before the play-offs.
Wright has been nothing short of abysmal of late, losing nine of his last 10 matches in his worst run in recent memory. Defeat to bottom of the table Anderson last week was followed up with a first-round exit on the European Tour at the hands of world number-86 Scott Williams.
Snake Bite hasn’t won any of their four meetings in 2022, and it’s difficult to see how the win is going to come here, and an MVG win looks a near certainty.
MICHAEL VAN GERWEN TO WIN
Michael Smith v Johnny Clayton
Clayton has now four of the 13 nights this Premier League season as he makes a good go of defending his title. The Ferret has got to the last three finals in a row (winning two) and would need to reach a fourth in order to cement his place at the top of the table.
Michael Smith has got to the finals on two occasions this year, they came in back-to-back weeks (5 and 6) but has failed to make a real push since then. Bully Boy has only got out of the first round twice since his last finals appearance and they came in the last two weeks. This might mean a turnaround in form for Smith who is currently in 7th place and is one point off Gerwyn Price in 6th and three points off Joe Cullen in 5th, though it looks too little to late for the Englishman.
Clayton has been the best player in the league this year and his dominance over the last three weeks of play has proved that, even though Bully Boy’s form is on the up we still think that this is Clayton’s match to lose and despite building a bit of a gap to MVG he will take all the points he can to extend said gap.
JOHNNY CLAYTON TO WIN
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