Dave Chisnall can bring Dutchman's dream run to an end
Chizzy looks too strong for De Zwaan
Sky Sports Action, 7pm Thursday
You would have got long odds on Jeffrey de Zwaan being the last Dutchman standing at the Winter Gardens this week but the 22-year-old debutant doesn’t plan on leaving Blackpool just yet.
De Zwaan stunned Michael van Gerwen on the opening night of the World Matchplay and took out another former world champion, Adrian Lewis, on Tuesday night to set up a last-eight showdown with Dave Chisnall.
A 500-1 shot at the start of the week, De Zwaan’s odds have plummeted and even though he’s the 11-8 outsider against a resurgent Chizzy, the world number 68 isn’t fazed.
“I’m scared of nobody,” warned De Zwaan following his dramatic 11-9 success over Lewis. “It’s a dream but I don’t want it to end yet.”
Jeffrey de Zwaan v Dave Chisnall
Head-to-head: De Zwaan leads 2-1
Chisnall’s extra stage experience could be a factor as we reach the quarter-finals over a marathon best-of-31 legs, though giantkiller De Zwaan has looked fearless and nerveless so far.
Van Gerwen and Lewis have got four world titles between them but that didn’t count for much in their first and second-round tussles with debutant De Zwaan.
The last eight has been a stumbling block for Chizzy who has reached this stage four times and lost on each occasion.
De Zwaan won their last meeting, a lightning-fast group-stage encounter at the Grand Slam in November. It went all the way but as a barometer for this encounter it is pretty meaningless.
What the longer format should accentuate is the players’ capability at hitting maximums. De Zwaan has hit six 180s in 36 legs, Chisnall twice as many in three fewer legs.
If De Zwaan is to become fazed then now’s the time. He’s top of the bill for the first time in his life and up against a crowd who will be right behind the St Helens thrower.
Chizzy’s errant darts get punished over shorter distances but, as he proved when coming back from 7-1 down to beat Michael Smith in round two, when he’s on fire he’s almost unstoppable.
D Chisnall to win & score most 180s
1pt 13-10 Paddy Power
Joe Cullen v Gary Anderson
Head-to-head: tied at 4-4
Having advised backing Joe Cullen to win the second quarter at the start of the tournament, there looks to be no reason to desert him now.
The Yorkshireman has dropped just six legs in seeing off seeds Gerwyn Price and Daryl Gurney and he is throwing some brilliant darts. He is averaging more than 51 per cent on his doubles which is sensational and he’s going to need to sustain that figure given the fewer opportunities he’ll get at the outer ring against Gary Anderson.
The Scot hasn’t been flawless by any measure, he was taken to 17 legs by Stephen Bunting in round one and had to come from 5-1 down to pip Raymond van Barneveld in round two.
Cullen won their one previous meeting on TV, and although that was two years ago, he can give a good account of himself again.
J Cullen +4.5 legs on handicap
1pt 11-10 Coral
Read Racing Post Sport every day for no-nonsense previews and expert sports betting tips
Follow us on Twitter @racingpostsport
Like us on Facebook RacingPostSport
If you are concerned about your gambling and are worried you may have a problem, click here to find advice on how you can receive help