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Jonny Clayton - PDC Premier League 2021

 

How Will Jonny Clayton Fare in the Premier League?

When Jonny Clayton walked onto the stage to play the Masters final against Mervyn King, he was unaware that a place in the Premier League was up for grabs. Following the World Darts Championship’s conclusion in January 2021, it was announced that one spot in the much-watched competition remained open. For Clayton, who’s currently ranked 18th in the PDC Order of Merit, this is a massive opportunity to showcase his talent on a global stage. So, how will he cope in the Premier League?

 

A Tough Challenge Awaits the Welshman

Due to the nature of the Masters, it’s fair to say that few competitions are trickier to win. Against the very best in the world in each round, there’s a constant need to be on top form, with any dips in performance likely to be punished. In claiming the trophy, Clayton managed to beat two former world champions in Michael van Gerwen and Peter Wright, as well as James Wade, Jose de Sousa, and, of course,King.

 

Clayton is under no illusions regarding the scale of the task that awaits him in the Premier League. However, he has recently started to show that he can compete and beat title-winning players on a regular basis. If he is to succeed, then he’ll need to replicate his Masters form.

Alongside Clayton, a host of familiar names will also be competing in the Premier League. In addition to Glen Durrant, last year’s winner, De Sousa, Dimitri Van den Bergh, Gary Anderson, Gerwyn Price, Nathan Aspinall, Rob Cross, Van Gerwen, and Wright will also feature. The scheduling of the tournament can be relentless, especially for those struggling with form and rhythm. In light of this, it's imperative that Clayton gets off to a winning start on the opening night.

 

Can He Replicate Durrant?

Heading into the 2021 Premier League, which is scheduled to begin around Easter, Clayton will hope to give a good account of himself. On rankings alone, this may be a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity for the 46-year-old. Since the tournament came to fruition in 2005, only six players have won the Premier League. However, of those to have won the event, Durrant is the only player to have done so on debut, aside from Phil Taylor in the opening year.

 

Coming over from the BDO, the Middlesbrough-born right-hander was an underdog, although his determination saw him surpass all expectations from start to finish. In 2021, few expect Clayton to go all the way, but Durrant has shown that debutants can be successful in the Premier League.

Based on his Masters form, Clayton undoubtedly has the ability to triumph over the world’s best players. Whether he can do that regularly, however, remains to be seen. As of February 8th, the Welshman is 28/1 in darts betting to win the Premier League, while Van Gerwen is the favourite to win the event for a record-equaling sixth time.

 

Don’t Count Him Out

Realistically, few hold the opinion that Clayton will win the Premier League in 2021. That said, that doesn’t mean that he can’t. If Durrant has shown us anything, it’s that the underdog can shock the world in thishighly popular event. Given the form he’s in, writing off the 46-year-old wouldn’t be wise as anything is possible in darts.

The Premier League started in 2005 and plays in front of sell-out crowds in arena venues across the UK & Ireland, the Netherlands and Germany. The four-month season concludes in London with the play-off finals at the O2 Arena.

 

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PDC PDC Premier League Past Winners

The Premier League started in 2005 and plays in front of sell-out crowds in arena venues across the UK & Ireland, the Netherlands and Germany. The four-month season concludes in London with the play-off finals at the O2 Arena.

Year

Winner

Score

 

Score

Runner-up

2020 Glen Durrant
11
-
8
Nathan Aspinall
2019 Michael van Gerwen 11 - 5 Rob Cross
2018 Michael van Gerwen 11 - 4 Michael Smith
2017 Michael van Gerwen
11
-
10
Peter Wright
2016 Michael van Gerwen
11
-
3
Phil Taylor
2015 Gary Anderson
11
-
7
Michael van Gerwen
2014 Raymond van Barneveld
10
-
6
Michael van Gerwen
2013 Michael van Gerwen
10
-
8
Phil Taylor
2012 Phil Taylor
10
-
7
Simon Whitlock
2011 Gary Anderson
10
-
4
Adrian Lewis
2010 Phil Taylor
10
-
8
James Wade
2009 James Wade
13
-
8
Mervyn King
2008 Phil Taylor
16
-
8
James Wade
2007 Phil Taylor
16
-
6
Terry Jenkins
2006 Phil Taylor
16
-
6
Roland Scholten
2005 Phil Taylor
16
-
4
Colin Lloyd

The Premier League final best of legs has changed over the years:
2005 - 2008 best of 31 legs
2009 - best of 25 legs
2010 - 2014 best of 19 legs
2015 - Current best of 21 legs

 

 

 

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