2017 PDC Worlds day 3 preview: Bunting to down Demolition Man, The Bull is back
Holly Thackeray | 17 December 2016
2017 PDC World Championship
- First round, day three
- Saturday, December 17th
- First session starts: 13:00 GMT
- Second session starts: 19:00 GMT
- Alexandra Palace, London
- Live on Sky Sports Darts (3)
Bunting, The Bull and Van den Bergh highlight Saturday sessions
What better way to recover from work Christmas parties than by indulging in a day of arrow action? Day three of the 2017 PDC World Championship treats viewers to the first double session of the tournament, so don’t miss out.
Highlights from the first serving of weekend wrangles include Stephen Bunting v Darren Webster, with this match-up between The Bullet and Demolition Man sounding more the the plot of a comic. While in other encounters, veteran Terry Jenkins takes on Josh Payne and exciting young-guns Cristo Reyes v Dimtri van den Bergh grapple.
So, as the first round of festive throwing continues at the Ally Pally, read on for Coral darts writers’ preview of Saturday scuffles…
Tengku Shah v Masumi ChinoFans may remember Japanese darts talent Chino (odds-on 8/11 match favourite) from his Tokyo Masters tussle with world number one Michael van Gerwen over summer, in which the up and coming East Asian arrowsmith took three legs off the mighty Dutchman in a 6-3 defeat, including clocking up a 140 checkout.
“I have to give him credit,” Van Gerwen said at the time. “He did some good things at the right moments.”
This closely-matched preliminary round rumble also features experienced Malaysian chucker Shah (11/10), but Chino’s star is shining brightest at the moment. Benito van de Pas awaits the winner.
Terry Jenkins v Josh PaynePayne (6/5) is a promising English talent and has clashed with older compatriot Jenkins (4/6) three times before, all in the PDPA Players Championship Barnsley, with a 2-1 losing record.
Their previous match-ups have tended to be tight so The Maximiser should give The Bull a prod, though the experienced fan favourite is tempting at 10/3 to edge this 3-2, having gone as far as the final four in this tournament before.
John Henderson v Andrew GildingNeither cult hero The Highlander (4/5) or Goldfinger (even-money) have made it past the last 32 before, though Scot Henderson edges previous battles 2-1 and has featured in the last 16 of the BDO World Championship previously.
So, expect this to be another finely balanced darting dust-up, with The Highlander also appealing at 10/3 to win it by a leg.
Ross Snook v Kim ViljanenNordic dartsman Viljanen (even-money) and Canadian Snook (4/5) collide to compete for the daunting task of a first round fray with Van Gerwen.
Finland thrower Viljanen is a steady performer, with several Scandinavian titles under his belt, and can oust North American Snook, for whom this is a tournament debut.
Cristo Reyes v Dimtri Van den BerghThis high-profile bout between two top talents tipped for great things in the future is the perfect curtain-raiser for Buntings showpiece with Webster.
In previous head-to-heads it’s two triumphs apiece from four meetings, with the odds split for seeded Spanish star Reyes (10/11) and younger Belgian whizz The Dream Maker (10/11).
Oche entertainer Van den Bergh recently starred in a courageous comeback against another older peer in Gerwyn Price at the Players Championship Finals to win 5-6 and, having shown what he is capable of, the ‘Happy’ starlet is 5/6 to be crowned King of the Oche (player to win match, most 180s and highest checkout. If any of the markets are tied, bets will be settled as losers.).
Or, there is value at 7/5 for yet another close clash here to got to over 4.5 legs at Alexandra Palace. Mighty Mike will likely await at the second hurdle, however.
Stephen Bunting v Darren WebsterIn the betting markets Bunting is the clear favourite for match spoils (4/9), highest checkout (4/6) and most maximums (4/11) in his battle with part-time professional Webster (7/4 to cause a shock on the night).
Demolition Man may have to bite The Bullet in London, with Bunting enticing to take the match 3-1 (5/2) and book a potential second round set-to with Simon Whitlock.
While, if you haven’t already read it, check out Coral’s exclusive interview with The Bullet, including his thoughts on the 2017 PDC World Championship.
For more previews, tips and features during the 2017 PDC World Championship, check out our extensive arrow archive.