This year’s PDC World Grand Prix takes place at the City West Hotel, Dublin from 30th September to 6th October. In total, there will be a field of 32 players, 16 of which will be among the best from the PDC Order of Merit, and the other 16 from the ProTour Order of Merit.
Qualification has been tough but the reigning World Grand Prix Champion, World No.1, Michael van Gerwen will line up as the favourite to retain his title.
The World Grand Prix’s unique format of double start, double finish makes this event one to watch as upsets are always on the cards. The darts betting odds Dublin Grand Prix are one you should look at. Punters can defy the bookie's predictions if they know the players form and ranking isn’t always key as we saw in the World Darts Champions last December, January when Rob Cross took the World title against the pre-tournament odds. So, who should you look out for?
Michael van Gerwen.
The World No.1 and two-time World Champion and former Grand Prix Champion is always going to be in the mix. However, many players are on his tail. Michael recently won the German Darts Championship beating James Wilson 8-6 in a tough final. However, World No. 2 Peter Wright claimed his third PDC Title in the PDC Pro Tour with a 6-2 win over Darryl Gurney earlier this month.
Darryl is the current World Grand Prix Champion. He won the 2017 title with a 5-4 victory against Simon Whitlock. It was Gurney’s the first PDC tile and he said: "I'm lost for words - I can't believe it, I really can't!"
Darryl played well all week and deserved his victory which propelled him up the PRC Order of Merit rankings so he will have a lot to prove this year otherwise he could see his position slip.
Peter Wright is a man on form and is due a big tournament win and the World Grand Prix could be that one! Peter is a crowd favourite and has an extensive fan base that loves him to do well. Peter always brings a smile to people faces with his uniquely coloured and styled Mohican style hair which takes a few hours to style by his wife Jo before each big tournament match.
Peter can, however, be very unpredictable with the darts equipment he uses and changes the barrels, flight and stems as often as his hair. His best success, however, has come from using the diamond incrusted grip darts supplied by his sponsor, Red Dragon. Peter’s recent Pro Tour title win will shorten his odds for the World Grand Prix title.
The current World Darts Champion hasn’t found his round to success that easy. Following on from the World title win in January against Phil ‘The Power’ Taylor, now retired, he hasn’t fully been able to replicate his top form.
In July, against the odds, Rob was dumped out of the World Matchplay 11-8 in round two by Darren Webster. But again, found form in the World Series of Darts in August has he claimed an 11-6 victory over Michael van Gerwen in the Australian Brisbane Masters final.
The World Series of Darts has seen six different winners this year, Mensur Suljovic, German Darts Masters - May, Gary Anderson, US Darts Masters – July, Michael Smith, Auckland Darts Masters – August, Michael van Gerwen, Melbourne Darts Masters – August and lastly Rob Cross with his inaugural Brisbane Darts Masters win also in August.
The World Series of Darts Finals will be held from November 2-4 at the Multiversum in Schwechat, Vienna, Austria and this also looks to be a difficult tournament to call.
The Austrian that goes under the radar a lot, but could make waves at the World Grand Prix, is Mensur Suljović. Mensur has made small but significant steps up the PDC Order of Merit over the past year and is currently ranked sixth in the World. Mensur claimed the 2017 Champions League title and recently, the World Series of Darts German Masters title. His style of throw is certainly one to watch as it is unconventional but uses it to devastating effect.
Mensur could be the dark horse amongst the 32 players at the World Grand Prix.
The top 16 players from the PDC Order of Merit automatically qualify for the World Grand Prix they are joined by a further 16 players from the ProTour Order of Merit. These include Gary Anderson, Gerwyn Price, James Wade and from the ProTour German star Max Hopp and the former BDO World Champion Stephen. All of these players are more than capable of going a long way in the World Grand Prix but could Michael Smith with his rhythm throw be the one or could the Aussie Simon Whitlock bounce back and go one step further? It is truly a hard tournament to call and if a player doesn’t start with his first throw it is using game over!
See the previous World Grand Prix Winners list below
|2016||Michael van Gerwen||
|Michael van Gerwen|
|2014||Michael van Gerwen||
|2012||Michael van Gerwen||
|Ireland Brendan Dolan|
|Raymond van Barneveld|
|Raymond van Barneveld|