Backing for Barney
Raymond van Barneveld impresses the bookmakers with stunning start at Ally Pally
By Tim Clement - Twitter: @SkyTimClement. Last Updated: 17/12/12 10:51pm
Raymond van Barneveld: Averaged over 108 in his first-round win
Raymond van Barneveld's PDC World Championship price has been slashed from 18/1 to 8/1 following his brilliant first-round display.
The five-time world champion notched nine 180s and averaged 108.31 - the sixth highest in the history of the competition - in his 3-1 victory over Michael Smith.
The number 13 seed crashed out with a 3-0 defeat to James Richardson in the first round last year, but dispelled fears of another early exit as he bounced back from a first-leg loss sensationally.
Such was the impressive nature of the win, bookmakers have more than halved his price, moving him in to third favourite.
Phil Taylor, on the other hand, was unimpressive in his victory over Michael Mansell and has consequently drifted out from 7/4 to 9/4.
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While none of the top seeds have fallen as yet at Alexandra Palace, there have been various other notable movements in the betting.
Gary Anderson and Robert Thornton have both started impressively and consequently come in to 12/1 and 25/1 respectively.
Sky Bet's Ned Brooker said: "While Taylor put in an uninspiring performance, three of the dangermen in his half of the draw fired warning shots with impressive first-round wins.
"Given Taylor has been susceptible to an upset, we've pushed out his price, but the 13-time champion still warrants respect and remains our clear favourite."