Grand Slam of Darts Groups A-D: Wolfie and Viking take to oche!
Sam Barnard, Assistant Sports Editor | November 6, 2015
Groups A-D first games
- Grand Slam of Darts
- Saturday, November 7th
- Evening session: 19:00-23:00 GMT
- Civic Hall, Wolverhampton
- Live on Sky Sports 2
Evening fixtures in order of play (groups in brackets)
Grand Slam of Darts official betting partners Coral preview the first day evening session of the cross-organisation event in Wolverhampton, where a number of stars and cult-heroes feature.
— PDC Darts (@OfficialPDC) November 4, 2015
PDC World number one Michael van Gerwen is chasing down this title for the first time, and he’ll be joined on the oche by the likes of Adrian Lewis, Peter Wright, Dave Chisnall, and BDO greats Martin Adams and Andy Fordham.
Read our first day afternoon session preview too.
Kim Huybrechts v Steve West (A)
Last year’s semi-finalist Huybrechts (odds-on 4/11 favourite) kicks off the evening session against PDC qualifier West (21/10), and should be able to see the Netherlands-based Englishman off.
Westy has beaten the Belgian before, way back in 2009, but The Hurricane gained revenge earlier this year thrashing him 6-1 at the Players Championship in Coventry so back him to win 5-1 this time at 9/2.
Jelle Klaasen v Steve Beaton (B)
Dutchman Klaasen really has looked terrific of late, getting to the quarters of the World Grand Prix and European Championship with his fast-paced throwing style. He’s been placed in a tough pool, but is a great shout at 2/1 to finish top.
The Cobra goes up against former great The Bronzed Adonis up first and is odds-on at 1/2 to get off to a winning start. Former BDO world champ and 2010 Grand Slam semi-finalist Beaton, meanwhile, is an 8/5 shout.
Michael Smith v Wayne Jones (C)
Next up is PDC world number nine Smith (4/11), whose best ever major appearance was in this competition last year. However, he faces Jones (21/10) on home Wolverhampton soil and has lost to the veteran twice before.
Younger Bully Boy, exactly half Jones’ age at 25, though, has won the last three all 6-2, so can be backed at a tempting 7/2 to triumph 5-2.
Dave Chisnall v Mervyn King (D)
Surely one day Chizzy will win a major title, having a number of semis and finals in the last couple of years including coming runner-up in the 2014 Grand Slam. In an incredibly tough Group D, he is 6/4 to top it but will have to come through two-time semi-finalist King.
Chisnall doesn’t enjoy facing three-time BDO major winner The King (7/4 match shout), though, having lost four of their last five meetings but is still the odds-on 4/9 favourite.
Adrian Lewis v Andy Fordham (C)
This will certainly be the match everyone will be waiting to see, as two greats of the game go head-to-head, and fans will be treated to Fordham’s return to the big screen after a troubled last decade off the oche.
The Viking (11/2) will no doubt have loved to face old foe Phil Taylor, after having to pull out of a duel back in 2004 due to health issues, but instead has been drawn the next best thing in The Power’s Stoke protege Lewis (1/9). Fordham is the 8/1 outsider to qualify form this pool, which everyone would no doubt love to see.
Michael van Gerwen v Mark Oosterhuis (A)
This event is practically the one major that has so far eluded Mighty Mike, but he was runner-up here in 2012. After adding the World Matchplay and another European Championship title to his rapidly-growing collection, he is the 13/8 favourite to go all the way in Wolverhampton this time.
First up, Van Gerwen (1/16 for victory) faces little-known Dutch compatriot Oosterhuis (8/1) and is 5/2 to whitewash him 5-0.
Ian White v Martin Adams (B)
How apt it is that Wolfie has finally taken to the Wolverhampton oche for his first ever Grand Slam. Having declined an invite every year until now, the 59-year-old has been placed in a difficult Group B, but is the third-favourite at 4/5 to qualify from it.
Up first for triple BDO world champion and eight-time major winner Adams (13/10), he is up against a fellow star who has got better with age White, who is interestingly odds-on at 8/13. Outspoken Wolfie has a point to prove after being a strong critic of the PDC, and is 6/1 for a 5-3 victory.
Peter Wright v Scott Mitchell (D)
To finish off the night, there is another intriguing matchup between two of the top players for the PDC and BDO, as both Wright (2/5) and Mitchell (15/8) are world number 4s in their respective organisations.
Scotty Dog is the reigning BDO world champion while Snakebite is one of the best in the business and can beat anyone on his day, and the latter is a tempting 5/1 to win 5-4.
— PDC Darts (@OfficialPDC) November 3, 2015