First class darts returns this afternoon as the 2020 World Cup of Darts gets underway in Salzburgarena, Austria.
From today at 12:00 to Sunday evening, we can sit back and enjoy 32 nations battling it out for the right to be World Cup winners.
Not included in the 32 is Singapore who have had to drop out due to Covid-19 restrictions preventing their travel to Austria meaning Portugal get a shot at glory instead.
The first arrow will be chucked at midday in the Lithuania Gibraltar matchup and everyone will play thereafter in the first round, which is played in doubles to a best of nine legs.
In the second round, matches are best of seven leg singles, while the final is best of seven singles followed by doubles, also best of seven and match betting is available.
The first team to win three games will be crowned 2020 World Darts Champions.
For Netherlands, world number one Michael van Gerwen, thrice times winner with his good buddy Raymond van Barneveld, is partnered up this time with World Cup debutant Danny Noppert.
While not as threatening as an RVB/MVG pairing, they have still been installed as the 41/20 tournament favourites.
In truth, Mighty Mike hasn’t had his best season this year but remains the world’s best.
His form is sure to return sooner rather than later which is concerning for his opponents given we are now little over a month away for the Ally Pally PDC World Championships.
He is of course the reigning UK Open champion too so he hasn’t had a completely horrible time and, with Noppert by his side, another World Cup crown could be looming too.
I, however, like the look of Wales this time around.
The pairing of Gerwyn Price and Jonny Clayton coupled with a nice draw looks pretty promising indeed even at the 27/10.
As for Scotland, darting superstars Gary Anderson and Peter Wright have pulled out meaning Scotland, who would have been favourites, are represented by Robert Thornton and John Henderson instead and have a plummeted price of 85/1 to offer.
That’s a big price for such an experienced duo.
Top seeds England have Michael Smith and Rob Cross to cheer for, but they too have posted poor seasons and a pair of either Glenn Durrant and/or Nathan Aspinall might have made more sense were it possible.
Elsewhere, Germany and Belgium are another two to look out for.
For Belgium, World Matchplay winner Dimitri Van den Bergh plays with Kim Huybrechts making them a couple that everyone will want to avoid, while Germany’s Gabriel Clemens and Max Hopp must also be monitored as a worthy each way consideration.