The Premier League moves to the Motorpoint Arena, Cardiff for Round 12 with a clear leader, Rob Cross.
Rob had a problematic 2018 following his maiden World Championship victory. He acknowledged that the pressure from the media other darting commitments took its toll on his game. After losing in the 2019 World Championships, it came as a bit of relief and to quote Rob from one of his interviews; he felt like he had got a monkey off his back and could now concentrate on his game.
Rob seems to have had not the best of reviews from the darts pundits; there has always been a view he might be a one-hit wonder, raising his game for the most important match of his life and failing to continue the performance after that.
Rob can only do one thing, play well and win. Although this may be obvious, this will make the pundits talk a little more positively and possibly review Rob as a player to be highly rated.
Rob has the talent and skill to be rated one of the top players in the PDC at this moment in time. Many of his fans support Rob and use the NJ betting apps to gain the best online deals they can before placing their bets to support their player.
While Rob is currently enjoying the top spot in the 2019 Premier League, he has several players still to contend with before making the Play-off Finals
Still, the favourite to retain his title is Michael van Gerwen. This year, however, hasn’t gone all to plan for the Dutchman and he has been more time recently than many of us can remember. Michael has won the Premier League title for the past three years, won four in total and appeared in all the finals since 2013!
Michael is current only one point behind Rob and could still top the league come the end of May. Probably the most significant week in the Premier League for both Rob and Michael will be when they clash in Cardiff; the winner will then head to Birmingham in firm control of the league table.
James Wade has found a new lease of life over the past few months. James has never been one to fall far from the top; however, now he is playing like a champion. He is currently in the third spot on the league table separated only by leg difference between him, Gerwyn Price, Mensur Suljović and Daryl Gurney. Every leg will count if he or any of the others wish to make the final cut come the end of next month.
Although James has never won the Premier League title, he has been runner-up on two occasions, losing the legend Phil Taylor both times in 2008 and again in 2008. The score in 2010, 10-8 to Taylor was a result of two nine finishes by Taylor. It was the first time that a player has hit two nine-dart finishes in a match. James, however, has hit numerous nine-dart finishes, including one at the World Grand Prix in Dublin which requires a double start and double finish. Maybe James could be inline for another before the end of the Premier League.
Gerwyn will be on home soil in Cardiff, and the Welsh player can expect some good support. He is currently in fourth spot and is indeed a contender for the playoffs. Recently Gerwyn has been fined by the Darts Regulation Authorty for his celebrations at the oche. The DRA considered these to not be in line will the rules and has since calmed down.
Gerwyn will face Michael Smith in Cardiff. Smith is currently at the bottom of the league table and needs to win all his remaining matches to stand a chance of playoff qualification. A lose for Smith will more or less seal his place outside the top-four come the end of May.
Although Smith was runner-up in the 2018 Premier League, he has failed to achieve the same high standards this year. Smith, however, will never give up and will want to win ever leg he can so he doesn’t finish bottom of the remaining eight players.
Peter always lights up the stage when he plays. Renowned for his flamboyant hairstyle and attire, Peter has always been a good entertainer. However, early exits in some of the recent majors might be down to the constant change of dart equipment he uses. Peter has failed to settle on one set and is always looking for that extra bit to give him the edge, however, to quote Catweazle, nothing works, and the magic seems to have left him. I am sure Peter will rekindle the magic we have seen him perform before too long; however, he, like Smith, is badly in need of a win.