The Players Championship Finals take place this weekend at the Butlin’s Minehead Resort. Our Darts guru John Pentin has provided a complete betting preview with outright tips and predictions. Read on below ahead of three days of darting action and make sure you take full advantage of the betting offers we have hand-picked for this occasion.
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Players Championship Finals 2023 Betting
Players Championship Finals Outright Tips
Darts Fever: 2023 Players Championship Finals Preview
As the darting world turns its focus to the Butlin’s Minehead Resort this weekend, the stage is set for an intense showdown at the 2023 Players Championship Finals. The tournament brings together the top 64 players from the Players Championship Order of Merit, all vying for supremacy after a season packed with surprise winners and gripping action.
Last Year’s Champion Eyeing Another Victory
Michael van Gerwen, the reigning champion, captured his seventh Players Championship Finals trophy last year, dominating the event in recent years. His victory over Rob Cross in the previous edition, a decisive 11-6 triumph, highlights his prowess and positions him as a strong contender for an eighth title, with odds currently at 8/1.
The Rise of Luke Humphries
Luke Humphries, the current betting favourite at 7/2, is a player in the form of his life. Fresh off wins at the Grand Prix and the Grand Slam of Darts, Humphries has showcased his ability to dominate on the big stage. His recent performances, characterised by high averages and impressive doubles success rates, make him a formidable opponent in this year’s championship.
Other Contenders in the Fray
The tournament is not just about Humphries and van Gerwen. Players like Stephen Bunting, Rob Cross, and Gary Anderson have shown promising form, making deep runs in recent tournaments. Moreover, Gerwyn Price, in search of his first major title in nearly two years, has been playing impressively in the season’s second half, suggesting he could be a dark horse in the competition.
A Look Back at the Season
The 2023 season saw a diverse set of winners across the 30 Players Championship events, showcasing the depth of talent in the field. With players like Gary Anderson and Gerwyn Price multiple times winners, the competition has been anything but predictable.
The Hunt for the Title
As the players converge at Minehead, the tension and excitement are palpable. Humphries, seeded seventh, has almost £62,000 in earnings from Players Championship events this year, a testament to his consistent performance. His back-to-back major wins, coupled with an impressive average and cool demeanour, make him a top pick to clinch the title.
Assessing the Odds and Probabilities
While Humphries leads the betting odds, the likes of Gerwyn Price and Michael van Gerwen are close behind. Other notable players like Michael Smith, Rob Cross, and Gary Anderson are also in the mix, according to the betting markets.
Historical Context and Recent Winners
The tournament has a rich history, with players like Phil Taylor and van Gerwen among its past winners. This history sets a high bar for current competitors and adds to the prestige of winning the championship.
Our Predictions for the 2023 Players Championship Finals
Luke Humphries: The Favourite to Triumph
Our top prediction for the winner of the 2023 Players Championship Finals is Luke Humphries. This 28-year-old darting sensation has recently catapulted into the limelight, transforming from a promising talent to a major title winner in mere months. His victories at the World Grand Prix and the Grand Slam of Darts were not just wins; they were statements of intent, showing a player at the peak of his powers.
Humphries enters the tournament as the seventh seed, a position backed by his impressive earnings of almost £62,000 in Players Championship events this year alone. His performances have been nothing short of outstanding, particularly noted in his back-to-back major wins where he averaged a formidable 104.69. This kind of form is hard to ignore and makes him the clear favourite.
His nickname, “Cool Hand Luke,” is fitting. He has shown remarkable composure under pressure, a trait essential for success in high-stakes tournaments. Humphries’ ability to maintain high averages and his efficiency on doubles are key factors that could see him dominate this weekend. His place in darting history, joining the ranks of legends like Phil Taylor and Michael van Gerwen with consecutive major wins, further cements our belief in his potential to win the Players Championship Finals.
Michael Smith: The Dark Horse with Potential
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Odds corrects at time of posting and subject to change
As for the dark horse of the tournament, we believe Michael Smith stands a significant chance of upsetting the odds. Smith, the current World Champion, has had a relatively quiet year by his standards but possesses the skills and experience to make a deep run in this tournament.
Ranked 30th in the order of merit, Smith might seem like an outside bet, but his recent form suggests otherwise. His appearances in the semi-finals of several prestigious competitions indicate that he’s not far from his top game. Smith’s ability to perform in compact tournaments like the Players Championship Finals could be his key to success.
Furthermore, the draw seems to have worked in his favour. His opening match against Richard Veenstra offers a solid start, and potential matchups in the later stages appear manageable. Smith’s major strength lies in his scoring power, and if he can tap into the form that took him to the world number one spot, he could be lifting the trophy come Sunday evening.
Smith’s 18/1 odds might seem long, but they reflect the unpredictability and open nature of this year’s tournament. His potential path through the tournament, coupled with his proven ability to perform on the big stage, makes him a compelling choice as a dark horse.
In conclusion, while Luke Humphries is our pick for the championship, based on his recent form and phenomenal rise in the darting world, Michael Smith’s potential as a dark horse cannot be overlooked. The 2023 Players Championship Finals is set to be a showcase of darting excellence, and these two players, each at different points in their careers, could very well be the ones to watch as the tournament unfolds.
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