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World Matchplay Darts: Who can stop Michael van Gerwen and Gerwyn Price?

The biggest event on the PDC calendar away from the World Championships is upon us as 32 players head to Blackpool for the 30th staging of the World Matchplay.

Michael van Gerwen, who is the defending champion, and Gerwyn Price, who lost to the Dutchman in that final, are both priced as favourites heading into the tournament.
Van Gerwen will open his campaign against 'The History Maker' Brendan Dolan on Sunday.
The 34-year-old arrives at the Winter Gardens fresh from winning the inaugural Poland Darts Masters in Warsaw - beating Dimitri Van den Bergh 8-3 in the final.
The Dutchman has been on a manic win streak over recent months, claiming the last three major events.
As well as winning the Poland Darts Masters, Van Gerwen also won the US Darts Masters in June and defeated Gerwyn Price to win the Premier League last May.
Speaking of the Welshman, he is also well-backed in the market. Despite losing to Van Gerwen in recent meetings, the bookmakers have faith in Price and most have the former world champion on level terms when it comes to pre-tournament odds.
No Welsh player has ever won the World Matchplay, but the 38-year-old is certainly well-placed to change that in 2023.
World champion Michael Smith is currently the third favourite. Since winning June's Players Championship 13 event, Bully Boy has stumbled in following tournaments.
Nevertheless, the 32-year-old is a former Matchplay finalist and already has two major semi-final appearances under his belt this season.
Van Gerwen, Price and Smith may be the three favourites, but who are the men to back at a bigger price?
Luke Humphries is certainly worth a look-in. The Englishman won the Players Championship 16 event on Monday - edging Dave Chisnall 8-7 in the final.
The 28-year-old also won the recent European Darts Matchplay - his first victory this season on the PDC European Tour.
Humphries has reached just one major final in his career - the 2021 UK Open - though with the player demonstrating good form, he could turn out to be a real dark horse.
Dirk van Duijvenbode is another hopeful. The Dutchman has come a long way from being ranked 99th in the world back in 2018 to his 11th spot today.
The 31-year-old has enjoyed impressive runs at recent Players Championship and European Tour events - making the quarter-final in Leicester and the final in Trier.
Dimitri Van den Bergh is also an enticing option considering he is priced around the 28/1 mark.
'The DreamMaker' won the Matchplay back in 2020 and reached the final a year later.
The Belgian star has reached three major semi-finals this year, including the World Championships, UK Open and the PDC World Cup of Darts.
Van den Bergh is more than capable of going all the way, though he faces a potentially tricky test in the opening round as he takes on Ross Smith.

Suggested bets for the World Matchplay Darts

Main tipMichael van Gerwen to win the World Matchplay

Dark horseDimitri Van den Bergh to win the World Matchplay

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