Osborne running into form ahead of clash with debutant Thompson
Colin Osborne feels that he is coming into form at just the right time ahead of the Ladbrokes.com World Darts Championship, but he is not taking anything for granted as he prepares to face Chris Thompson in the opening round at Alexandra Palace.
Osborne arrives at the tournament in good form having negotiated the group stages at the recent Grand Slam of Darts, which included a victory over world number four Simon Whitlock.
He is 2/7 in the darts betting to beat Thompson, with the current head-to-head record between the pair standing at one victory each.
Thompson may be slightly overpriced at 5/2 to progress given this fact, although it remains unclear how well his nerves will hold up in his first appearance in the Ladbrokes.com World Darts Championship.
Osborne’s recent solid form and higher seeding should mean he is the most likely to triumph and backing ‘The Wizard’ to win 3-1 in sets could prove profitable at 9/4.
Jamie Caven is the likely opponent for the winner in the second round and a potential showdown with Osborne would have an added edge, as it would be an all-Derby showdown.
However, world number 18 Caven is still waiting to discover his first round opponent.
He will taken on the winner of the preliminary round showdown between Devon Petersen and Norman Madhoo, with Guyanese darts star Madhoo given the slight edge on experience.
Madhoo has played at the tournament twice before, without ever winning a match, while South African qualifier Petersen is preparing for his first appearance.
The Ladbrokes.com World Darts Championship betting has little-known Petersen as the 8/15 favourite to advance in the best of seven leg contest, while Madhoo is priced at 11/8.
A £10 bet on Thompson beating Osborne 3-1 could lead to a payout of £80. New Ladbrokes customers can sign up here for a free £10 bet.