Peter Wright has been brilliant all week and Dan Fitch thinks he will win his first World Matchplay title when he meets the reigning champion Dimitri van den Bergh in the final.
"If Wright plays like he did against Michael van Gerwen in the semi-final, then there’s no way that Van den Bergh or indeed any other player in the world, can beat him."
PDC World Matchplay
Sunday 25 July
Live on Sky Sports Arena
Dimitri van den Bergh 2.447/5 v Peter Wright 1.684/6
Start time, 20:45
The 2021 World Matchplay final looks set to be a classic, with two in-form players meeting in front of a packed Blackpool Winter Gardens on Sunday night.
Second final appearance is a fine achievement
Van den Bergh beat Krzysztof Ratajski 17-9 in the semi-final. That scoreline is even more impressive when you consider that Van den Bergh was 6-2 down at one stage, with the 27-year old showing remarkable consistency to win 15 of the following 18 legs and claim victory.
Last year Van den Bergh beat Gary Anderson in the final to claim his first win in a major. To get to the final this year is arguably, already a bigger achievement.
He had to beat the world number one Gerwyn Price in the quarter-finals, with 'The Iceman' using every trick in the book to get under Van den Bergh's skin. Dimitri remained unflappable and in getting to the final this year he has dispelled any doubts as to whether he can perform under pressure in front of a big crowd, after winning the World Matchplay last year without an audience. In fact, Van den Bergh seems to be one of those players who feeds off the atmosphere generated by an enthusiastic crowd.
While the match against Price had plenty of needle, there should be nothing but respect when Van den Bergh meets Wright. The younger man moved in with Wright and his family during the first lockdown last year and it's no surprise that his first win in a major came shortly after spending so much time practising with the 2020 World Champion.
Wright on another level
If Wright plays like he did against Michael van Gerwen in the semi-final, then there's no way that Van den Bergh or indeed any other player in the world, can beat him.
'Snakebite' averaged 110.37 against MVG in a 17-10 win. Van Gerwen had not been at his best during this tournament, but he produced his A-game against Wright and it still wasn't good enough.
Wright came into the World Matchplay on a high, after winning the last of the Super Series tournaments and he's carried that form into this week. It's a remarkable turnaround considering that Wright really struggled for form during most of the Premier League campaign.
Such is the deep pool of talent in the PDC now, that it seems unlikely that we will see one player dominating as we did during Phil Taylor's time and then the early years of Van Gerwen's career. Instead, it will be a case of one of several brilliant players peaking at the right time to win a tournament. At this moment, it's Wright who is playing on another level to everyone else.
Though it would be no surprise whatsoever if Van den Bergh lifted the trophy for a second time tonight, you just can't look past Wright. He's been in sensational form all week and his victory against Van Gerwen was one of his best ever performances.
These two have met twice this year in the Premier League and despite not being at his best, Wright managed to draw the first game 6-6 and then won 8-5 in the second match.
Dan Fitch World Matchplay P/L
Staked: 36.00 pts
Returned: 35.85 pts
P/L: -0.15 pts