By Dave South
15 DECEMBER 2016 • 10:26AM
According to the odds compilers, Jamie Caven could be the first casualty from the William Hill World Darts Championship as the narrow underdog versus Kevin Painter, who made the tournament by virtue of Kyle Anderson’s absence.
Caven has been lacking form in 2016, but so has the Artist, so this game is massive for both players.
I do think Painter will get through this, as the pressure will be off him compared to Caven who is trying to save his top 32 status.
Both players will be ready for the fight and I think this will be closer than most expect.
I expect both to win a set and think Painter will edge this 3-1 or 3-2 and do not see either going down 3-0.
Mick McGowan and Jamie Lewis should be as interesting as the Caven/Painter encounter, with the Welsh maestro 4/6 and the Irish thrower 11/8.
I do think there will be a few maximums in the game but see a cagey affair similarly. I think Lewis should edge this!
Gary Anderson will look to make light work of Mark Frost.
No disrespect to Frosty, but Anderson will be all business here and will want to get the job done quickly.
Although Frost has played on the circuit for many years, he lacks the experience of the Ally Pally stage and the pedigree of the defending champion should be enough to see a comfortable win.
For the accumulator backers, all four favourites on the night (Painter/Anderson/Lewis/Smith) to all win pays 4.20 with Marathonbet.
Painter to beat Caven and both to win a set – 5/4 Betfred
First leg 180 NO – Painter and Lewis games – 11/10 Paddy Power and Betfair
Prices correct at time of publication