The Ladbrokes PDC World Championship kicks off on the December 14 and the ante-post win market odds have been alive with punters getting their bets on.
Betting on the PDC World Championships is predicted to hit new heights of turnover this year, with increasing coverage on Sky Sports adding to the great sponsorship of the event by bookmakers Ladbrokes, who have invested £1million into the prize money and are expected to create plenty of turnover from around the country.
The 2013 PDC World Championship is set to not only be the one of the best darts competition in a very long time; it’s also going to be one of the most punted on sporting competitions of the year. Apart from a major football competition, like the World Cup, or a huge horse racing meeting, like the Cheltenham Festival, the PDC World Championships is seen by bookmakers as one of the most important betting competitions of the year.
The simple format, along with the excitement produced through the action, is exactly what gamblers want from their betting. Also with it being an individual sport, it is easier to predict how a player is playing coming into a game, and also, there are now refereeing decisions that can end a bet before it’s had a chance to become a winner.
Much of the attention from an ante-post perspective in betting terms is whether Phil Taylor still possesses the same spark that has led him onto winning 13 PDC World Championship titles.
The bookmakers have won fortunes in the last two years as Taylor was knocked out by Mark Webster in 2011 and Dave Chisnall in 2012. In both those years Adrian Lewis went onto win the tournament, but despite his barren run in this tournament, Taylor still is a friend of the punters and has been installed as the clear market leader for the tournament.
At one stage pre-tournament, firms had Taylor as big as 7/2 to wrest back his title, but his recent win in the Players Championships, where he looked back to somewhere near his best, has drawn the punters in and collapsed the price to Taylor’s usual range. Most firms have Taylor as a 2/1 favourite for the title, most notably, Coral, BetVictor and Bet365, but sponsors Ladbrokes are really dangling the carrot for punters by offering 9/4 on Taylor winning his 14th World title on the PDC.
This is a brave move by their traders as they are likely to rack up plenty of liability on him winning, and considering they sponsor the event and put £1million into the prize fund, they could find themselves out of pocket by the end of December if Taylor wins.
Obviously, there is a fairly good chance that Taylor will come unstuck somewhere along the way, and leave the bookmakers smiling and the punters crying into their beer. If he is to get beat then, there only looks three or four players that can throw down a challenge.
The new man to take his mantle could well be fiery Dutchman Michael van Gerwen, who is a clear second favourite in the market at 7/2 with Ladbrokes. He is a relentless scorer and is great to watch, and will be confident of beating Taylor if meeting him at some stage.
Another man that could have Taylor’s number is the Flying Scotsman Gary Anderson. Nothing fazes him at the top-level and at 16/1 is generating plenty of interest from punters, especially at each-way odds.
Along with Van Gerwen and Anderson, it’s hard to imagine two-time winner Lewis not being in the mix come the end of the tournament again. He hasn’t been his usual self with the arrows this year but comes alive at Ally Pally and the 11/1 with Ladbrokes could be an interesting punt.