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PDC World Matchplay Darts 2020 preview

John Reid July 17, 2020
Photo by Dean Mouhtaropoulos/Getty Images

Darts’ second biggest tournament gets under way on Saturday, as the 2020 PDC World Matchplay takes place.

However, in a year of upheaval, there unsurprisingly are changes from the norm.

The tournament will be held behind closed doors at the Marshall Arena in Milton Keynes, rather than the usual Winter Gardens in Blackpool.

Dave Clark will not be presenting the tournament on Sky Sports after his recent retirement.

However, some things stay the same, and Michael Van Gerwen will be favourite to win the Phil Taylor Trophy for the third time.

Photo by Dan Kitwood/Getty Images

He will be out to overcome a poor recent record at the tournament, which he hasn’t won since 2016.

World Champion Peter Wright has to be up there with the favourites, as does defending Matchplay champion Rob Cross. Looking at this year’s draw there are the prospect of some titanic games early in the tournament.

Should they both win their first round games, former Matchplay champions Gary Anderson and James Wade will meet in the second round.

The improving Krzysztof Ratajski v Jermaine Wattimena is arguably the pick of the first round ties.

It will certainly be a unique experience seeing such a big tournament played behind closed doors. However, such an event has happened before in the sport.

Due to severe weather conditions, fans could not attend the 2018 UK Open, which was won by Gary Anderson.

It will be interesting to see if the lack of fans affects any of the players. If not, and should he play at his best, expect to see Michael Van Gerwen win his third Matchplay tournament.

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