Dartoids World


Wednesday, April 19, 2023
Column HR403 

“Come on down, Gerwyn Price, to see what you’ve won!”

It was a memorable night in the Premier League for Price when the “PDC traveling road show” hit Brighton.  The city, known as a beach paradise during summer, was a chilly 46 degrees with showers.  For most it was no night at the beach as Price took to it like Joey Chestnut does to hot dogs.  Joey, like the ODC, attended the Harvard of the West, THE SAN JOSE STATE.

Price was perfect like corn thru a seagull after someone yells, “Look up”.  This was the Price that captured the World Championship in 2021 beating Gary Anderson 7-2.  In 2022, Price reached the quarters losing to Michael Smith 4-5.  This year, Price again made the quarters but was ousted by Gabriel Clemens 5-1.  In that one Price took the first set 3-0, then Clemens rolled five sets on winning 15 legs to 4.  Since then, he’s had spotty play.

Price entered the night 5 points behind leader Michael van Gerwen in a race to the final 4 playoffs paying a nifty £275,000 to the winner with a measly £125,000 for runner-up.   Price became the first to win 4 PL nights adding a £10,000(bonus for winning) making his haul this year £40,000.  All Price’s wins came with averages of 100+ with a high of 115.97 in his opening 6-2 win against Chris Dobey.  Dobey is unlikely to make the playoffs as he trail’s 4th place Jonny Clayton by 7 points with four nights remaining.

Dobey has played too well to be where he is.  He’s played well with terrible results.  Against Price, Dobey averaged 103.27 where Price opened 2-0 with legs of 11 and 13 which morphed to 4-2 when Price unleashed an 11-darter.  Then, T80 and T27 presented Price with 54 which was sent on its way.  The winning leg was also in 11 (T80, T, T45 leaving 76 – erased with T20 D8).  Price was 6/10 in finishing.  Four of those misses came in a winning leg 4.

Next up for Price was Michael van Gerwen where both had averages that were capable of securing a win on most nights.  MvG tacked up an average of 104.71 but was outscored by Price at 108.05.  Captain Oblivious arrives stating, “As is often the case it was a dreaded perky d16 that sunk MvG” in Price’s 6-5 win.

A pair of 15-darters gave MvG a 2-nil start.  Price leveled at 2 with finishes of 72 and 86 in 14 and 11 darts.  MvG regained the lead (3-2) after Price missed 3 from 40 using a T20 check.  That lead stretched to 4-2 in a leg where Price trailed after a MvG T80.  Price clawed one back in the battle of T80’s and left himself 40.

It got level at 4 thanks to Price’s 13-darters.  Price’s 11-darter moved him to 5-4 – one leg from the win but stalled by a MvG 10-darter.

The decider was a collapse waiting to happen.  Price, with the darts, scored T80, T, T80 leaving 81 after 9 darts as MvG wallowed back at 267.  MvG got to T70 giving Price a chance to check from 81.  Price missed a dart at 24 to close.  MvG’s Ton left him to 70.  Price missed three leaving 24.  MvG used 18 and 20 to miss one at 32.  Price nailed d12 to move on.

Michael Smith would make the finals beating Jonny Clayton 6-4.  Clayton had leads of 3-1 and 4-2.  Smith, as he has done in the past, missed 5 doubles for 3-3.  That usually leads to “lackadaisical” play to follow on legs.  Not this time as Smith captured 4 for the win including an 11-darter in the decider.  Clayton never saw a double.

Peter Wright, against Smith, has played better, which is not saying a lot as he seemed lost.  After a sorry first leg Smith used 12 darts and a T21 check to level.  Then 16 to lead 2-1.  After Smith led 3-2, Wright would level in 14, then lead 4-3.  Smith answered in 12 as Wright used 14 to lead 5-4.  Smith used 15 and 13 which came after Wright missed the Bull from 88.

The final was level at 1 and 2 when Smith broke out leading 3-2 following a Price missed Bull from T21 then 2 more from 24.  From then on, it was all Price thanks to Smith being unable to close from 34, which would have given him a 4-2 lead.  Price took advantage of Smith’s inability to score for the 6-3 win.

“The Price (was) right” in Brighten which begs the question: “will Price be atop the standings after night 15 in Sheffield?”  He trail’s MvG by a mere 2 points.

With the draws set, the two meet only once in the first round (which is called the Quarters, but the Old Dart Coach prefers the “first round”) – and three other matches in the finals if they advance throughout the night.  The 4th seed is wide open with Jonny Clayton hanging on to a 2-point lead over Nathan Aspinall and 7 over Chris Dobey.

A win by Clayton over Dobey this week in Rotterdam would probably doom Dobey’s hopes for the playoffs.  Aspinall is going to have a difficult and bumpy road to travel as his first round draws are Michael Smith, Michael van Gerwen and Gerwyn Price where he will be a big underdog.  He’ll probably be the favorite against Dimitri Van den Bergh on night #13 but then he’d face either Price or Clayton.

This weekend the CDC hosts the CDC Cross-Border Darts Challenge at the historic White Eagle Hall.  Why is it historic?  According to the internet, “It’s a music, theatre and dining venue in a restored historic building in the Village neighborhood of Downtown Jersey City, built in 1910”. 

Eight players for Canada and the USA will compete for spots in the 2023 Bet365 US Darts Masters and Bet365 North American Championship plus a minimum of $15,000 in prize money.  If you don’t have tickets, you can catch the action on Darts Connect.

Stay thirsty my friends.




  • Howie Reed

    Astute, often controversial, and always humorous, the Old Dart Coach, Howie Reed (a former rodeo cowboy and advertising executive), is heralded as the Dean of Darts Chroniclers - the most prolific and widely followed writer ever about our sport. He goes back decades with the legends and knows where the skeletons are buried (just ask any of the ADO and WDF old-timers!). Here are four well-known facts about the Old Dart Coach: 1) he is a Republican, 2) he loves the ladies, 3) he can drink most anybody under the table, and 4) he throws darts as bad as Dartoid.