The world's top ten darts players have struggled in the PDC Home Tour, but Dan Fitch thinks that Rob Cross can join Nathan Aspinall and Dave Chisnall in the next stage...
"If things go to plan, this will be the match in which Cross can clinch victory, while Telnekes will already be out and lacking motivation."
PDC Home Tour
Thursday 7 May
Live on Betfair Live Video
On Thursday night the highest ranked player yet to feature in the PDC Home Tour makes his bow, as the world number four Rob Cross enters the tournament.
As you'd expect, Cross is favourite to win Group 21 at 8/11 on the Sportsbook. Dimitri van den Bergh is tipped to provide the sternest opposition at 11/4, with both William Borland and Derk Telnekes priced at 7/1.
We have seen a major shakeup in the betting for the winner of the PDC Home Tour, after Glen Durrant made it through Group 19. Nathan Aspinall is still the favourite but is now out to [8.2], while Durrant is just behind him at [8.4]. Should Cross progress, he could very well move ahead of both players and become the new favourite.
Cross will start night with a win
Rob Cross [1.33] v William Borland [3.9]
Start time 19:30
By the high standards of Cross, it's not been the best start to the year. His quarter-final position at the UK Open is the furthest that he's gone in a tournament and he sits second from bottom in the Premier League.
Cross still should have more than enough to cope with the threat of the young Scotsman Borland, who has only just won his tour card in January. Back Cross to score the most 180s and win the match at 5/6.
Telnekes can be competitive
Dimitri van den Bergh [1.56] v Derk Telnekes [2.78]
Start time 20:00
Now ranked 27 in the world, Van den Bergh is making good progress in his career. He has not been consistent this year, but followed his quarter-final appearance at the World Championships by reaching the last-eight of the UK Open back in March.
Telnekes is a newcomer to the tour and was just making an impression when the season was suspended, reaching the quarter-final and then the semi-final of a Players Championship event in Barnsley. Van den Bergh beat him 6-3 in February, so let's go for another competitive match, with over 7.5 legs available at 8/11.
Dutch starlet can edge battle of newbies
William Borland [2.0] v Derk Telnekes [1.88]
Start time 20:30
Both of these young players look to have a lot of potential and the ability to move up the rankings over the next couple of years.
Of the pair it's Telnekes that's so far made the greater impression, with the Dutch player already having beaten the likes of Stephen Bunting, Gary Anderson and Peter Wright. Back Telnekes to win this one at [1.88].
History of close encounters
Rob Cross [1.65] v Dimitri van den Bergh [2.32]
Start time 21:00
Van den Bergh won the last encounter between this pair back in 2019, but prior to that he had lost all of the previous five matches.
There have been a lot of tight games between these two and it therefore makes sense to play it safe by backing over 7.5 legs at 4/6.
Back VDB to win big
Dimitri van den Bergh [1.42] v William Borland [2.96]
Start time 21:30
Van den Bergh is a very sharp finisher, ranking 13th in terms of checkout percentage in the PDC, over the twelve months.
That ability could be key to finding some value when backing the Belgian. You can odds of 23/10 for Van den Bergh to win, score the highest checkout and most 180s.
Find value for Cross in the handicap market
Derk Telnekes [3.56] v Rob Cross [1.33]
Start time 22:00
It's not easy to find a way to back Cross to win, especially at a time when he is not playing at his absolute best.
If things go to plan, this will be the match in which he can clinch victory, while Telnekes will already be out and lacking motivation. Back Cross with -2.5 on the handicap at [2.2].
Back Cross to beat Borland and score the most 180s at 5/6
Back over 7.5 legs between Van den Bergh and Telnekes at 8/11
Back Telnekes to beat Borland at [1.88]
Back over 7.5 legs between Cross and Van den Bergh at 4/6
Back Van den Bergh to beat Borland, score the most 180s and highest checkout at 23/10
Back Cross -2.5 against Telnekes at [2.2]