Phil Taylor aiming to move step closer to PDC darts play-offs in Birmingham
Last Updated: 01/05/14 6:51am
Phil Taylor: Doubling up, along with opponent Dave Chisnall, in Birmingham
Phil Taylor is aiming to move a step closer to the Betway Premier League Darts play-offs as he doubles up against Raymond van Barneveld and Dave Chisnall in Birmingham on Thursday.
Taylor, the 16-time world champion and six-time Premier League Darts winner, has put his nightmare start to this year behind him with a seven-game unbeaten run which has moved him into the league's top four.
With only three league nights remaining before the play-offs in London on May 22, Taylor's double-header at The NIA could prove crucial in him securing the chance to challenge for the title.
Chisnall sits four points adrift of the play-off places following his defeat to Michael van Gerwen last week, and takes on Robert Thornton - the only player of the remaining eight unable to reach the top four - and Taylor as he too doubles up in Birmingham.
"I've got four games left and that's eight points I can win, so that can still get me there," said the St Helens thrower. "It depends on the other games but I'm looking forward to this week.
"I'm playing Robert Thornton and Phil Taylor, and hopefully I can do the double there. Phil's still the best player in the world - when he's 'on' he's something different - so it will be good to play him.
"I think I'm playing well, so I've just got to tidy up a little bit on my doubles."
"I'm playing Robert Thornton and Phil Taylor, and hopefully I can do the double there. Phil's still the best player in the world - when he's 'on' he's something different - so it will be good to play him."
Chisnall on Taylor
Gary Anderson's play-off challenge could hinge on his meeting with league leader van Gerwen, with the 2011 champion having joined Taylor on 14 points in the table with a pair of draws in Manchester last week.
Van Gerwen's win over Chisnall in Manchester maintained his status a point ahead of Dutch rival van Barneveld, and the current world champion is aiming to claim his 10th win of the season against the Scotsman.
The night's other game sees third-placed Peter Wright playing Adrian Lewis, the UK Open champion who has lost his last four games and must avoid defeat on Thursday if he is to keep alive his top-four hopes going into the final two nights of the league.
Watch all the action on Sky Sports HD1 from 19.00 on Thursday night