Group 28 of the PDC Home Tour promises to be a tight, high-quality affair and Dan Fitch is backing Michael Smith and Luke Humphries to score heavily when they clash...
"Smith hit eleven 180s in his three group games last time out, while Humphries scored six."
PDC Home Tour
Thursday 13 May
Live on Betfair Live Video
Four more darting hopefuls will try to grasp a second opportunity to progress in the PDC Home Tour on Thursday night, in Group 28 of the competition.
The world number five Michael Smith is the favourite at 10/11 on the Sportsbook. He looks set to face stiff opposition from the second favourite Luke Humphries at 11/4, with Mike van Duivenbode at 4/1 and Andy Boulton at 6/1.
Glen Durrant remains the favourite to win the tournament at [9.8], with Rob Cross at [10.5] and Nathan Aspinall at [11.0]. One would imagine that Smith would move into the list of favourites, should he make it through Group 28, with 'Bully Boy' currently trading at [32.0].
Smith will get off to a winning start
Michael Smith [1.35] v Michael van Duivenbode [3.6]
Start time 19:35
Smith will hope to get off to a flyer against a player that he has a superb record against. He has won all seven of his matches against Van Duivenbode.
That includes a 6-3 win as recently as March. You can back Smith with -1.5 in the handicap market at [1.78].
Tighter match than odds suggest
Luke Humphries [1.59] v Andy Boulton [2.5]
Start time 20:05
Group 28 promises to be tight, as all four players performed well in finishing second in their previous groups, each winning two games. This would suggest that the odds might be a little skewed here and that argument is strengthened when we look at the head-to-head record between this pair.
Boulton has won both of his two matches against Humphries, beating him 10-8 at the UK Open in March. At the very least this promises to be a close game then and over 7.5 legs is available at 8/11.
Boulton has dominant record
Mike van Duivenbode [1.99] v Andy Boulton [1.95]
Start time 20:30
Boulton trades as the slight favourite here, which is unusual when you consider that he is the overall outsider in the group.
Again, Boulton has a dominant head-to-head record, winning the two previous encounters last year by a clear margin (6-0 and 6-1). Even at the shorter price, the value has to be with Boulton at [1.95].
Back Smith's 180 scoring power
Michael Smith [1.57] v Luke Humphries [2.56]
Start time 21:00
Smith has won four of the five games between this pair, but Humphries won the most recent match in March of this year.
With the result in some doubt, let's back over 4.5 180s at [2.2]. Smith hit eleven in his three group games last time out, while Humphries scored six.
Humphries can maintain winning record
Luke Humphries [1.62] v Mike van Duivenbode [2.5]
Start time 21:30
Humphries has won his two matches against Van Duivenbode with some comfort, winning the most recent game last year by a 4-1 scoreline.
Given the margin of that win, odds of [2.2] for Humphries with -1.5 in the handicap market, look like decent value.
Last match was a close call
Andy Boulton [3.6] v Michael Smith [1.34]
Start time 22:00
Once again, this is another fixture in which we have some recent history to draw upon. Smith won 6-4 back in March, which is close enough to suggest that the odds are too wide here.
With the potential for this to be another tight one, over 7.5 legs is 10/11.
Back Smith -1.5 against Van Duivenbode at [1.78]
Back over 7.5 legs between Humphries and Boulton at 8/11
Back Boulton to beat Van Duivenbode at [1.95]
Back over 4.5 180s between Smith and Humphries at [2.2]
Back Humphries -1.5 against Van Duivenbode at [2.2]
Back over 7.5 legs between Boulton and Smith at 10/11