World Matchplay: Thursday’s preview
Frank Monkhouse | 27 July 2017
Snakebite to strike in game of the night
The action continues to come at us thick and fast from Blackpool’s Winter Gardens, and you can have your say on every leg from every match right here at Coral. Pick out your favourites and club them together in an accumulator – view the latest prices here.
Lovers of an upset have had plenty to talk about this week, not least Daryl Gurney’s stunning win over Gary Anderson in the second-round. The Flying Scotsman, red hot favourite to progress before the match, was beaten 11-9. That’ll take some topping. Let’s look at Thursday’s fixtures.
Take Wright on the handicap
Standout fixture of the night pairs Peter Wright with Darren Webster. Snakebite made light work of Spaniard Cristo Reyes earlier this week, strolling to an 11-4 win, and oozed class in doing so, without ever really getting out of first gear. Of course, the result was to be expected, but the manner in which it was achieved caught the attention of punters, and the Scotsman is now a 7/2 second favourite to win the title, at the time of writing. There’s 8/13 on a final appearance.
The 47-year-old from Livingston shouldn’t encounter too many problems on Thursday either, certainly not if our traders are to be believed, and they have him as a 1/7 poke to win the match. About fair, all things considered, but if you want your stake money to work a bit harder for you, play the handicap market.
Wright has been in devastating form for most of this year, and goes as one of the most consistent players on the circuit. Coral are giving 8/11 on him -5.5, and that looks the best way to play this one. If you’ve got a tad more confidence in the jolly, -6.5 is 10/11.
Gurney must remain professional after big win
Earlier on the programme and the Daryl Gurney vs Mensur Suljovic match is worth a mention. We’re still coming to terms with the fact Gurney was able to knock Anderson out, and the winner will take plenty of confidence from that upset. There’s no doubt he faces an easier task against Suljovic, but can he raise his game again?
In sport, it’s easy to perform against the big names, especially when written off across the board, but it’s a lot more difficult to go out there and do the business when you’re expected to win, with the added pressures of being a favourite. Can he step back down to earth? It’ll require real professionalism, the like Gurney has never had to show before, but we’ll give him the benefit of the doubt and he can be added to multiples at 4/6.