Snakebite ready for grudge clash

Peter Wright feels Michael van Gerwen will need to be right at the top of his game is he wants to win their Premier League Darts clash on Thursday (Wright 7/2, Van Gerwen 1/2, draw 9/2 – Match Prices).

The two stars are set to go head-to-head in Brighton in what could be an explosive end to the league stage of this year’s PDC circus.

The two players have been involved in a war of words ever since Wright’s on-stage antics annoyed the Dutchman in Dublin, with Van Gerwen suggesting that Snakebite’s working of the crowd was disrespectful.

The Scottish-born ace responded by stating that he would do it again if he desired and would “smash” the world champion next time they met.

That time has now arrived and it has been set up nicely for a thrilling finale, as Wright needs to beat or draw with MVG to stand any chance of reaching the play-offs at the O2 Arena on May 22.

And the World Championship runner-up has made it clear that, having finally settled on a set of darts he likes, win, lose or draw, ‘Mighty Mike’ will know he has been in a match on Thursday night.

“He might smash me up, but he’s going to have to be playing well,” he said. “I started using these darts two days before Newcastle.

“When they go, they go really well. He’s going to have to play really, really well.”

The result will be immaterial if Phil Taylor beats Robert Thornton and Gary Anderson takes care of Raymond van Barneveld, but there is plenty of pride and self-esteem to play for and neither player will give an inch on the oche (Thornton 5/1, Taylor 2/5, draw 9/2 – Match Prices).

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