Written by Gazz


Well its that time of year The Winter Gardens in Blackpool become the home of big time darts so today we’re going to have a look at some of the games and the players who may go home with the title of World Matchplay Champion 2013.

There will be a slight change to the playing rules for the BetVictor World Matchplay which will make for some even more dramatic matches in Blackpool next month.

For the 20th staging of the tournament, matches will no longer run and run until a winner by two clear legs is found, with instead five extra legs being played before a sudden death one-leg shootout comes into operation.

In previous years of the tournament matches could continue ‘ad infinitum’ beyond the original scheduled distance until a player achieved a two-leg lead.

However, following consultation with the event’s host broadcaster Sky Sports, the PDC have amended this rule for 2013, with games now proceeding a maximum of five extra legs before a tie-break leg comes into play.

The original scheduled formats for each round will remain the same, with the new ruling only coming into play should no two-leg lead be found in the extra five legs.

In the event of any game going to a deciding leg, there will be no re-throw for the bull, and the order of play continues unchanged. The order of throw will be decided by a bull-off pre-match in the practice room.

So here we have the first round draw

Seeded players in bold

Phil Taylor (1) v Stuart Kellett
Terry Jenkins (16) v Andy Smith
Raymond van Barneveld (8) v Mensur Suljovic
Justin Pipe (9) v Mark Webster
Simon Whitlock (5) v Jelle Klaasen
Kevin Painter (12) v Jamie Lewis
James Wade (4) v John Part
Mervyn King (13) v Gary Anderson
Michael van Gerwen (2) v Colin Lloyd
Kim Huybrechts (15) v Peter Wright
Wes Newton (7) v Jamie Caven
Dave Chisnall (10) v Paul Nicholson
Andy Hamilton (6) v Ronnie Baxter
Robert Thornton (11) v Ian White
Adrian Lewis (3) v Ronny Huybrechts
Brendan Dolan (14) v Steve Beaton

Some selected matches from the first round that should be a cracking watch

Mervyn King (13) v Gary Anderson

This has the makings of a belter both top class players and both in need of a good run in a major this game will be worth a look two big 180 hitters so it should not fail to entertain i think king may just sneak this he is playing the better of the two at the moment

Michael van Gerwen (2) v Colin Lloyd

MVG the world number 2 and Lloyd the former Matchplay champ both have the game to go on a run but van Gerwen is a man in form he is on a mission to take that world number 1 spot from Taylor so i can see van gerwen doing a job here

Robert Thornton (11) v Ian White

I always look at these draws and look for a shock or two this is a tough draw for Thornton as White is a dangerous floater in the draw and i have to think Thornton will have to show up with his A game from the start I see this being 10-8 either way

Simon Whitlock (5) v Jelle Klaasen

Both had a solid run in the Euros and Klaasen is coming back to form but Whitlock is bang in form only losing in the Euro Final to Adrian Lewis but he played well and I can see these two having a cracker of game
Who’s going to win the Title?


Gazz : Well Phil Taylor will be well backed to retain his title, Taylor’s been king of the Matchplay for the past 5 years beating James Wade in 3 finals, Terry Jenkins and Raymond van Barneveld in the others

But van Gerwen wants the title and a showdown between the two is what all darts fans want and Blackpool is the perfect stage for such a game but Lewis, Wade, Barney and Whitlock all want to spoil that party so its going to be quite a week.

Andy:  Despite his inconsistent form its really hard not to think Phil Taylor will make it 6 in a row as The Power absolutely loves Blackpool and is a different animal on this stage. I was very impressed with Adrian Lewis in the European’s recently and I’m making him my favourite for success. I also expect a strong showing from James Wade and Michael van Gerwen and I’d love to see an Adrian Lewis v Michael van Gerwen final as the showdown between those two in the Euro Semifinals was very special indeed.

Well I hope everyone enjoys the tournament it should as always be a superb week in Blackpool

Darts World Matchplay 2013 starts Saturday July 2oth at 7pm on Sky Sports 1 HD

Until next time this is Gazz saying Game On

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