Wayne Mardle: Reigning champ Lewis to start with 3-0 win

Can Lewis hold on to his title?

Betfair Ambassador Wayne Mardle selects his best bets on day one of the PDC World Championship at Ally Pally... 

Recommended Bets
Back Robert Thornton to win 3-1 @ 3.052/1
Back Paul Nicholson to win 3-1 @ 3.3512/5
Back Adrian Lewis to win 3-0 @ 1.618/13 

Robert Thornton v Magnus Caris

Opening matches are ideal times to find value. That's because players are yet to find their rhythm, yet to acclimatise to the venue. Of course, that's the same for both outsiders and fancied players but if an outsider comes to the oche with a point to prove and nothing to lose, he may be well placed to cause an upset. 

Magnus Caris has been around the block plenty of times. He's a crafty, experienced competitor who won't be daunted by the big stage. I'm going to back him to win a leg but over all Robert Thornton, who is by far the better player, should prevail. 


Paul Nicholson v Co Stompe

Co Stompe isn't playing well. He's never been past the quarter-finals in the PDC World Championship and he went out to Terry Jenkins in the last 32 in 2011.

Paul Nicholson only went one round better but he's the stronger player. He's way out at 160.00159/1 in the tournament winner market, but I expect him to win this match with plenty to spare.


Adrian Lewis v Gino Vos

The defending champion faces a tough test in the first round. Adrian Lewis failed to progress beyond the group stages of both the Premier League and the Grand Slam so he can't afford to take this for granted. However, while I don't expect him to upset the odds and win the title for a third time, his recent form suggests that he is back on the right track. He also boasts the important quality of producing big performances in big matches, as we saw 12 months ago.  

If Lewis stamps his authority on this contest from the outset then Gino Vos won't stand a chance. I'm backing the champion to open his campaign with a 3-0 win.

Recommended Bets
Back Robert Thornton to win 3-1 @ 3.052/1
Back Paul Nicholson to win 3-1 @ 3.3512/5
Back Adrian Lewis to win 3-0 @ 1.618/13 

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