Tuesday, 25 July 2017

Matchplay day 4 analysis, round 2 top half preview

Preview first:

(5) Dave Chisnall (1/3) v Alan Norris (11/4)

Round 1: Chisnall 10-7 v King, Norris 10-6 v Huybrechts
Head to head: dartsdatabase down again so who knows

Match up of two people who ruined my bets in the previous round, Chisnall looking solid in the face of some King pressure and pulling away when it mattered, whereas Norris didn't exactly set the world alight, and didn't need to, as Huybrechts played even worse. Either player performing like they did in the previous round should result in a Chisnall win - Norris is going to have to up his game to what it was 4-5 months ago during his UK Open/Pro Tour runs in order to get close to Chizzy in this one, and then probably hope that his opponent does his frequently done thing of missing doubles at key moments. The model projects this as 74/26, which is as near as damnit to the betting line, which is good as I really don't want to bet this one.

(4) Adrian Lewis (4/6) v Rob Cross (11/8)

Round 1: Lewis 10-7 v Beaton, Cross 10-7 v White

There were a lot of questions about Lewis as to whether he'd perform after his time off, and the answer seems to have been yes - eight out of ten legs won against Steve Beaton were in fifteen darts or less, which is a very high standard, and given his relatively small sample size in my database (which started when he began taking all the Euro Tour off last year), it increased his winning chances in a lot of projected matchups. Cross wasn't fantastic against White, he got two twelve darters, which was one more than Lewis, but was allowed to win six of his legs in more than fifteen darts, which if Lewis does to him as he did to Beaton, will result in a defeat. This seems far too close a line based on Cross hype - 1u Lewis 4/6

(8) Phil Taylor (8/11) v (9) Raymond van Barneveld (5/4)

Round 1: Taylor 10-5 v Price, van Barneveld 10-8 v Cullen

This was the game that everyone wanted to see when the draw came out, and we've not been deprived of it despite spirited efforts by Gerwyn Price and Joe Cullen. Neither of these behemoths of darting history performed that well in round 1, Taylor doing slightly better, but not by much, and while Barney has the historical stat edge, the master computer saying he's around a 58% favourite, this seems like a game where it's going to be all about emotion, nerve and experience and this can go all out of the window. I won't discourage a Barney bet, but there's enough intangibles here that I'm going to avoid it and enjoy what may be their last TV matchup (that counts)

(1) Michael van Gerwen (1/14) v (16) Simon Whitlock (21/2)

Round 1: van Gerwen 10-4 v Bunting, Whitlock 10-5 v K Anderson

Both players advanced fairly comfortably in round 1, van Gerwen hitting par for the course, with a couple of dodgy legs including one where he missed more doubles than he usually misses in a month, while Whitlock couldn't generate a twelve darter, but hit enough fifteens to deny his compatriot the chances needed. Whitlock won't be completely dead, he did after all have one dart to beat MvG in a major last season, albeit over a much shorter format - this is longer, and I've got it as a 91/9 game - i.e. betting either player is not a good idea.

Now for the round up:

Mensur Suljovic 11-6 Justin Pipe

Can't say that I watched this one, train delays back from work caused me to need to run over in preparing the previous post, Mensur was around average - one four visit kill, and enough in fifteen to never really give Pipe a chance, who was mostly feeding off scraps, and might have kept it a bit closer but for some missed doubles on occasions. Pipe couldn't raise his game enough to beat Suljovic at par for the course, but has to be somewhat happy with getting here and getting a win.

Darren Webster 11-7 Steve West

Weird one, after neither really got going for the first session until Webster fired in a twelve to break, they then both started breaking for fun with some quality legs. West couldn't quite produce enough fifteens, allowing Webster to break him in fifteen darts on three occasions which proved to be the difference, it wasn't until he was 9-5 down that he held after leg three, by then it was too late. Webster's performance was decent, eight out of eleven in fifteen darts, two of them being twelves, he may need to tighten up some of his doubling in the next round though.

Daryl Gurney 11-9 Gary Anderson

What a game. I thought Gurney was already a lock for the Premier League, but he is now, as he rises to within four thousand pounds of sixth in the world in my adjusted rankings (although Barney will push that higher with a win tomorrow). Anderson was really pressuring - over 105 in the legs Gurney won, while this is easier as Gurney managed four twelve darters and only finished one leg in over fifteen darts (the hold to go up 10-8), it's still impressive. Gurney was only broken twice all match - once with a twelve darter while waiting on 84, and in leg two having missed two darts for a 14/15 dart leg. There's zero reason why he can't reach the final having put the questionable performance in round 1 behind him tonight.

Peter Wright 11-4 Cristo Reyes

Leg in, leg out consistency was the key for Wright here - ten out of eleven legs in under fifteen darts, including two breaks in four visits at key points (one with Reyes waiting on 36 at 6-3 before the final break, one with Reyes nowhere after Reyes immediately broke back) to put the game away at a stage where it looked like it could still be in the balance. Reyes didn't play badly, he was just given very few chances, and had some poor legs to give Wright free chances, which he took (twice allowing Wright to break in fifteen without even being on a double if he was allowed to return). Like Gurney, this was a return to form after a questionable first round, although possibly not immediate form, more from a few months ago. Peak Wright regardless.

Revised top half/overall win percentages

I've put the new data in, here's what we've got (this is ignoring the in-play Suljovic/Pipe game)

To reach the semi final:

van Gerwen 76.72%
Lewis 54.95%
Chisnall 33.77%
van Barneveld 13.65%
Taylor 7.06%
Cross 5.97%
Norris 5.30%
Whitlock 2.56%

To reach the final:

van Gerwen 66.16%
Lewis 14.61%
van Barneveld 7.94%
Chisnall 6.36%
Taylor 3.43%
Whitlock 0.85%
Cross 0.36%
Norris 0.28%

To win it all:

van Gerwen 50.45%
Anderson 28.89%
Lewis 6.36%
Wright 4.59%
van Barneveld 3.45%
Chisnall 2.07%
Suljovic 2.01%
Taylor 1.17%
Webster 0.35%
Reyes 0.33%
Whitlock 0.18%
Gurney 0.08%
Cross 0.04%
West 0.04%
Norris 0.03%
Pipe 0.00%

Analysis/bets of Wednesday and a roundup of tonight to follow after this evening's session

Monday, 24 July 2017

Matchplay day 3 analysis

Simon Whitlock 10-5 Kyle Anderson

Can't help but feel like Anderson missed a few tricks here, he should have nicked the first leg but had bad third/fourth turns having stolen the darts, which might have given the game a whole different outlook. After that through to the break he didn't do a great deal wrong, Whitlock was mostly efficient in preventing break chances, then he managed to claw it back to 7-5, and then we saw the bad parts of Anderson - a leg where he didn't score, with a chance to break and get back on serve he left only 170 after twelve darts, then to hold to stay in the match he only generated one dart at double having left 121 after nine. Whitlock was solid, but that won't cut it next round - there's very little that will cut it next round though.

Adrian Lewis 10-7 Steve Beaton

Adie looked good here, although the game could have been completely different had Beaton managed to finish 112 in the second leg in the six dart he'd expect to have with Lewis on 140. His icing of the match with a four visit kill to deny Beaton the chance to force him to hold throw and avoid overtime was clinical, 140-140-140-81 out is always a great leg, and he was relentless throughout, eight from ten legs won being in fifteen or less. Beaton kept things interesting, taking advantage of a bad leg six to pull level and hold to 5-5, but not finishing 221 in nine after the break was key, that gave Lewis the break he needed and he didn't give a chance after that. Lewis looks solid, if not quite as explosive on this display, and should be able to overhaul Cross next round if he keeps this up.

Michael van Gerwen 10-4 Stephen Bunting

This threatened to be a whitewash for a while, with van Gerwen rolling the first seven legs, but Bunting was then able to hold twice where van Gerwen didn't really threaten the throw, only leaving 156 after twelve in one and not leaving a finish at all in the same, before Bunting got a break back with van Gerwen missing more darts at double than I usually do in the first leg after the break. It was only a tiny chance, and Bunting couldn't capitalise, you can't expect to win a leg against Michael leaving 90 after six visits, he got one more break but a 160 out for the second four turn kill of the game would put things to bed. This was hit and miss, the legs van Gerwen lose were really mediocre, averaging under 80, and the legs he won were around par for the course. It's a win in the books, but average. Average for MvG wins against more or less anyone though.

Rob Cross 10-7 Ian White

There were plenty of chances for White here - he was doing well enough to finish his first two legs on throw in fifteen darts, but that would have won any of Cross's first five legs on throw. White missed a few, mostly at big combo outs - 151 in the opener, 118 in leg 7, 121 in leg 13, as well as two clear in the deciding leg on the Cross throw. Nick one of those big outs, and that, for want of an awful big cliche, could have been a big momentum changer. Cross was showing some good power legs on a couple of occasions, a twelve straight out from the final break and an eleven to break back and lead 9-7 after White got it back on serve, but will definitely need to tighten up his game, less than one in three on outs contributed a bit to only finishing four of ten winning legs in under fifteen darts.

Revised bottom half percentages

Quick one before we start tonight's session:

To reach the semi final:

Anderson 74.67%
Wright 56.11%
Webster 23.02%
Suljovic 21.94%
Reyes 19.93%
Gurney 3.33%
West 2.93%
Pipe 0.05%

To reach the final:

Anderson 61.93%
Wright 19.02%
Suljovic 11.42%
Webster 3.47%
Reyes 2.98%
Gurney 1.04%
West 0.14%
Pipe 0%

Sunday, 23 July 2017

Matchplay round 2 bottom half preview

Sod it, I'm looking at this now before I go to bed:

(7) Mensur Suljovic (1/3) v Justin Pipe (3/1)

Round 1: Suljovic 10-4 v Henderson, Pipe 10-5 v Klaasen
Head to head: Pipe leads 9-2

That head to head stat is a mild concern, especially when you factor in it's not just Pipe stat padding during his peak when Suljovic hadn't started his rise, five of those games come in the last 2 years, and Pipe leads those 4-1. Suljovic looked fine today, seeing off Henderson with little trouble and looking good doing so, albeit without any four turn legs, whereas Pipe, as described earlier, did little to suggest that his small uptick in floor form that got him here translated to the stage, as his numbers were just as poor as his stage game over the past year. The model is putting Suljovic at over 95% to win this one, he's not a less than 100% Klaasen and should put Pipe out much more than the market suggests - 2u Suljovic 1/3

Darren Webster (8/11) v Steve West (11/8)

Round 1: Webster 13-11 v Wade, West 10-5 v Smith
Head to head: Less than two games

The only all-unseeded clash so far, and barring a Beaton/Cross double tomorrow (not unbelievable) or a Bunting/Anderson double (OK then) it will be, this has opened up hugely for either player with the prospect of either Cristo Reyes or Peter Wright in a major quarter final. Webster was a bit lucky in that Wade managed to first blow his lead, then miss match darts, while West put in what was so far the performance of the round in blitzing Michael Smith in the first game up, killing my accumulator before things even start just like Liverpool in lunchtime kickoffs. West's performance has done enough to his numbers, which aren't a huge sample size compared to others still in the field, to change things from the pod 6 analysis post a bit, whereas previously he was below 20% to win this, he's now above 25%, but that is still some way short from what the line is hinting at. Webster has the advantage in TV experience over this sort of format I think, but West's game was so good that I don't want to go completely nuts and will just stick with 1u Webster 8/11

(2) Gary Anderson (2/7) v Daryl Gurney (7/2)

Round 1: Anderson 10-7 v Kist, Gurney 11-9 v van de Pas
Head to head: Anderson leads 6-4

This game was hyped as a potential match of the round ignoring the Taylor/Barney thing, with Gurney's improvement in form to the point where he's got to be extremely close to the Premier League at this stage, and his win over Anderson in Vegas just a week ago. This week, Anderson slotted in a very tidy game against a dogged Christian Kist, showing few weaknesses or dips from his historical form, whereas Gurney was not good, and managed to grind it out by keeping the pressure on and taking the chances that Benito allowed him to. Anderson is a big favourite in the market, does Gurney's recent form make it a bet for Gurney? I don't know. I have an extra 20 won legs on Gurney than Anderson in my sample (as he plays the Euro Tour more often mostly), and Anderson has as many five visit turns and twice as many four visit turns. I'm going to give Gurney the benefit of the doubt and say that today was an off day, and that he's doing more over his averages over the last twelve months right now that I'll refrain from betting Anderson.

(3) Peter Wright (3/10) v Cristo Reyes (4/1)

Round 1: Wright 10-8 v Wilson, Reyes 10-3 v Thornton
Head to head: Wright leads 7-1

While Wright leads 7-1, that one was their last meeting last month in Europe, while the other seven have all been close - four 6-5 results, two 6-4 results and a 10-7 in last year's European Championship. Wright averaged under 90 in grinding it out against James Wilson and will need to be much improved here against Reyes, who slammed in a ton plus average against a mediocre Robert Thornton, killing everything very tidily and getting over a ton in the legs that Thornton won. There's vig being offered, and it's from most bookies favouring Wright as opposed to a couple liking Reyes (relatively), so this might be a bet. The new figures have shifted things a couple of percentage points in favour of Reyes, I'm not entirely sure how given that Wright has an enormous sample size, the largest in my database, and Reyes didn't exactly crush his historical form, but there you go - the model has things at 70/30, which looks more than enough to predict the upset happens enough for a profitable bet - 0.25u Reyes 4/1

Matchplay day 2 evening analysis

Dave Chisnall 10-7 Mervyn King

Infuriating one this, started off extremely sloppy with neither player able to get anything like a good leg until Chisnall broke in fifteen to lead 3-2 at the break, the game then picked up but wasn't spectacular until we got to 6-6, then Chizzy fired in back to back twelves before Mervyn had a very bad scoring leg, manufactured a dart at tops to hold which was badly shanked, allowing Chizzy to break in eighteen darts. Mervyn did break back in fifteen after Dave missed three match darts, but missed a dart for Shanghai on twenties to hold and Chisnall closed it out. Annoying as King should have been 4-1 up at the break really, and kept things in general good order. Chisnall's numbers look OK and should be fine for round two, but he'll need to improve in a quarter final if he gets that far.

Phil Taylor 10-5 Gerwyn Price

Finally we get to see Phil throwing competitive darts for the first time in over six months, and he started like a train - wins the first leg then has one of those crappy online stoppages for no reason as Price held in seven visits, holding in five turns and breaking in four with a great 151 out, but fair play to Price, he held things together and hit straight back with a twelve of his own on a 170 out. Things went with throw in the second session, pretty poor in that only one leg was killed in fifteen darts, then Taylor won every leg without ever really being troubled - holding two in fifteen (one under no pressure, the final leg being under big pressure, Price donking away his look away 180 by hitting single one first dart at 100), holding in seven in a doubling clown show, then stepping in when Price twice couldn't finish his own throw in eighteen darts. Against Barney he'll need to be much improved, his figures are bang average.

Raymond van Barneveld 10-8 Joe Cullen

Hats off to Cullen here - he's the second player this week to throw four twelve darters in defeat (after James Wilson), and it would have been very easy to capitulate after going 7-3 down at the break, but he kept things going and clawed his way back into it, and but for a couple of key missed darts at double late in the game in Barney's late winning legs (tens to kill 140 in the decider, three clean at tops in the clownshow fifteenth leg which iced the game as Barney broke in nineteen darts) he could easily have nicked this. Barney, if we're comparing with Phil, did a bit worse - both had five legs won in less than fifteen, one of which each was a twelve, but Barney was allowed to win two legs in over six visits, Phil only the one, and Phil was about three points higher on the losing average, so their next round game might be close.

Alan Norris 10-6 Kim Huybrechts

Some day, hopefully in the not too distant future, Huybrechts will actually be able to put a string of legs together that we know that he's capable of, and was showing in the first three legs, before he then proceeded to lose eight legs in a row, seven of which he could have won if he had just finished a leg in fifteen darts - 15 Dart Bot beats Norris 10-1 here. Kim's average in losing legs was actually over 90, which surprised me given how easily Norris was allowed to accumulate his lead, but Kim was on 40 or less in all but one legs he lost. Norris will need to do much better against Chisnall in the next round - while Dave can be a world champion in faffing around on doubles, probably beating Huybrechts in the final of that event, he should generate enough chances to get the fifteen dart legs he needs to dispose of Chuck.

Bit of a disappointing session betting wise with the Huybrechts/King losses, leaving us, barring a Bunting shock, either around a unit down or a fraction of a unit up after round 1 dependent on the White/Cross result. For round 2, I'm needing to recheck some numbers tomorrow evening, and bookies were a bit slow in getting Tuesday lines (the Anderson/Wright half) out, but at a quick glance Suljovic, Webster and Reyes look like they should be plays, keep an eye out tomorrow evening as I should hopefully have Tuesday analysis up during the Whitlock game (think he's first up), probably won't be as in depth with pretty graphs and everything but should drill to the facts that matter.

Matchplay day 2 afternoon analysis

Justin Pipe 10-5 Jelle Klaasen

Strange one, Pipe's speed of finishing was more or less on par with his historical finishing, getting four legs in fifteen darts out of ten is bang on his 41% long term figure, and getting a further four in six visits is close as well (hard to be precise, he's at 86%), so how did Jelle not exploit this? It's primarily bad play on his own throw - first two legs he let Pipe break in six visits and seven visits, and let him break a further time in six visits in leg 10. Add to that letting Pipe hold leg seven in seven visits, all of which took place before the final break, put him too far behind, and he wasn't playing well enough to claw anything back.

Cristo Reyes 10-3 Robert Thornton

Another near full point in the bag for FRH bet followers as Reyes ran riot on Thornton, while there was just the one twelve dart leg, to get the first break and lead 3-1, he clocked in with another six legs in fifteen darts or less and didn't win any legs in more than six visits. This wasn't going to give Thornton too many opportunities - legs three, five and thirteen were the only chances Thornton had to break in fifteen darts, in which he didn't leave a finish, couldn't kill 112, then missed three clear darts at 40, but at 9-3 down it was a lost cause anyway. It wasn't a horrible standard by Thornton, averaging 89 when losing and getting 2/3 legs in fifteen darts, but he needed to step up against Reyes in this form, and didn't.

Daryl Gurney 11-9 Benito van de Pas

This was a bad match, at least as far as standards go, and a weird match. Gurney won 11 legs, of which nine needed more than five visits, which should have given Benito enough chances to claim the victory - 15 Dart Bot would be leading 8-1 with the tenth being undecidable given Gurney's position when Benito broke in twelve, and wins 10-3 at the very worst. That said, Benito averaged just 83 when losing legs, which is going to give Gurney enough margin for error to get by, while Gurney was averaging over 100 when Benito won his legs. He's going to have to step up his game against Anderson, at least to what he's been doing in recent times.

Mensur Suljovic 10-4 John Henderson

Solid enough game from Mensur, grabbing six out of ten legs in fifteen, with three of the others coming in the opening session where Henderson couldn't capitalise - not even getting a dart at double in leg three despite having six visits, only getting a last dart at bull in the sixth visit the leg after, then missing three clean at double 19 to go into the break 5-0 down. Henderson averaged 82 when losing, which isn't enough against someone with Suljovic's consistency to really challenge.

This rounds out the Tuesday schedule, which looks like Suljovic/Pipe, Webster/West, Anderson/Gurney and Wright/Reyes - I'll update the figures and preview the second round, if not tonight, some time tomorrow.