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MVG to defend in Leverkusen

Frank Monkhouse | 2 July 2017

Dutchman a short price at European Open

Smidt-Arena, Leverkusen plays host to the European Darts Open, what will be the eighth leg of the European Tour. Coral traders have Michael Van Gerwen as a red-hot favourite, paving the way for value if you fancy taking on the jolly.

We’re betting on the outright winner, click here to back your views. Will MVG live up to expectations and defend his title, or can an outsider upset the odds and get their hands on the £25,000 prize money?

van Gerwen showed his fighting spirit in Austria

Michael Van Gerwen came out on top here 12 months ago, beating rival Peter Wright 6-5 in what turned out to be a thrilling final. Our sports team expect to see this year’s renewal follow a very similar path, with Mighty marked up as the most likely champion, while Snakebite heads the chasing pack.

A bet on the shortest price will also be a punt on the form player of the field, with 28-year-old van Gerwen winning the Austrian Open recently. In another nip-and-tuck decider, Mighty edged out opponent Michael Smith 6-5 to claim his third tour win of the year so far. The world champion was again heavily tipped to continue his form, but he had to roll up his sleeves, going 2-0 behind to the former world youth champion. MVG to double up is 8/15.

Smith won’t improve a place

26-year-old Englishman Michael Smith did the business in the Gibraltar Open just last month, but his surge to the final in Vienna came as a shock to most, and he has been written off to go one better here, 40/1 the prize available to those who want to keep on the right side of the St Helens man. That’s sure to attract a bit of interest, given his recent form, and Coral offer each-way players 1/3 the odds 1-2.

Main danger to Mighty’s title is believed to be fans’ favourite Peter Wright, but he will need to up his game significantly if he is to feature, having lost in the early exchanges last week. It was a very disappointing effort, and the player will demand much better from himself. Snakebite is 4/1 second favourite, ahead of fellow Premier League star Dave Chisnall, ranked at 16/1.

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