Two English players are the next up on our run-through of PDC World Championship seeds.
Last time out, we took a look at John Henderson and Dimitri van den Bergh. Next on the agenda are Steve West and Ally Pally debutant Glen Durrant. All odds are provided by World Championship sponsors William Hill, and are correct at time at publication.
Previous World Championship appearances: 3
Best PDC major performance: Quarter-Finals, European Championship and UK Open, 2018
Walk-on: Don’t Stop Believin’ – Journey
Odds to win: 500/1
You might be forgiven for being surprised that Steve West is among the seeds for the World Championship. The Essex man has been largely anonymous throughout the season, having appeared at just two majors since last year’s Worlds and winning one game, against Ryan Searle at the UK Open.
In his defence, West has reached three semi-finals on the floor – though he’ll be desperate for a payday at the Palace. ‘Simply’ has never lost a second-round game at the World Championship. After a first round exit on debut, he reached the third round in the next two outings. 12 months ago, he was left kicking himself after a 4-2 defeat to Devon Petersen, in which chances presented themselves to go deep into the tournament.
West, who has been a serious thorn in many a big player’s side in the past (particularly in 2018) faces Searle or Robbie King in round two. If he can make it two major wins on the bounce against the former, or win his first ever tie against the latter, he could play against Gary Anderson.
Previous World Championship appearances: 0 (PDC debut)
Best PDC major performance: Semi-Finals, World Grand Prix, Grand Slam of Darts and World Matchplay, 2019
Walk-on: Let Me Entertain You – Robbie Williams
Odds to win: 40/1
The last person to graduate to the PDC from the BDO, cause havoc in majors across the year, and then enter the World Championship as one of the favourites, was a certain Raymond van Barneveld. Glen Durrant is also on his way to legendary status – winning at the Ally Pally would seal it, and not many would bet against him.
It’s been a remarkable 2019 for a man who came an inch away from being dumped out of Q-School. The UK Open didn’t go to plan, but that’s about it. Michael van Gerwen was eliminated by Duzza en route to the World Matchplay semi-finals. Then another semi came, this time at the World Grand Prix. After avoiding an early exit, he got to the last four of the Grand Slam. Yet every time, he fell just short of the final hurdle.
Could he break his PDC major duck at the World Championship? Bearing in mind that he comes into this as a three-time back-to-back world champion, it’s clear that the Middlesbrough star has the quality and calm to top the world. Fans are already charting out his path to the final. Daryl Gurney, then Mensur Suljovic, Gerwyn Price, Rob Cross and MvG is a possible route. He’s good enough to beat them all.
Let’s not get ahead of ourselves, however. First up will be a meeting between the tricky Jose de Sousa or Damon Heta in round two.Tags: Glen Durrant, PDC, Steve West
Author: Ed McCosh