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Michael van Gerwen v Adrian Lewis - Players Championship Finals preview

Tungsten titans Lewis and Van Gerwen face off in the latest chapter of their fascinating rivalry (credit: Lawrence Lustig/ PDC)
World number two and three - Michael van Gerwen and Adrian Lewis - collide for the eighth time in 12 months on the big stage as they face off in Round Two in Minehead on Saturday night.

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The duo have staked their claim to carry the mantle for the sport in years to come, and their latest meeting represents a renewal of a fascinating new rivalry on the cusp of its first anniversary at last year's World Championship.

The quick-fire pair have contested thrillers at the European Championship, World Matchplay and Grand Slam of in recent months, but the unique seeding within this particular event sees them collide at only the Last 16 stage.

Van Gerwen breezed past Jamie Lewis 6-1 last night, while 'Jackpot' overcame Kevin Painter 6-3, however they both have an array of gears to climb as they prepare to round off the night in style.

After contesting a gripping battle at this stage of the Grand Slam a fortnight ago (with Lewis prevailing), both will be desperate to avoid a premature exit here and continue their momentum heading into finals day.

Dutch ace Van Gerwen's recent head-to-head record against Lewis, however, does not bode well; he has suffered defeat at the hands of 'Jackpot' in six of their last eight meetings.

After his blistering spring spell, MVG has not claimed silverware since a European Tour triumph in May, but nevertheless presents a deadly threat to the field - even as the bookmakers price him out as far as 6/1 for the crown this weekend.

Lewis, who notoriously feeds off van Gerwen's rapid pace and scoring power, survived a brief scare in Round One, and knows he must improve on that showing if he is to pile more misery onto the 24-year-old.

In total, the pair have met 19 times in previous PDC competition, with 'Mighty Mike' having claimed victory on ten of those occasions, but is looking to end a near four-month wait for a triumph over the Stoke star in front of the television cameras.

The bookmakers cannot separate the two players, with both priced at 10/11 to navigate their way into the last eight, and on current form and over the extended format - they look set to contest yet another breath-taking battle in front of a sell-out 4,000-strong Somerset crowd. 

The match gets underway at around 9.45pm GMT and will be streamed live over the best of 17 legs from the Butlins Minehead Resort.

Fleetwood ace Wes Newton awaits the winner in the Quarter-Finals on Sunday afternoon, after he defeated Steve Beaton earlier today. 

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Recommendations: (odds with BetVictor - exclusive free £5 no deposit bet for new customers)
  • Van Gerwen to win 9-7 @ 13/2
  • Lewis over 5.5 match 180s @ 10/11
  • Van Gerwen over 4.5 match 180s @ 5/6

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Michael van Gerwen v Adrian Lewis - Players Championship Finals preview

World number two and three - Michael van Gerwen and Adrian Lewis - collide for the eighth time in 12 months on the big stage as they face off in Round Two in Minehead on Saturday night.

Read more »