Darius Labanauskas v Matthew Edgar - 12:45

Tense battle to go the distance

Kicking off Saturday's action at Alexandra Palace, Lithuania's Darius Labanauskas takes on Matthew Edgar. 'Lucky D' secured his place at the World Championship following a solid year on the PDC tour - with an appearance in the final of a Players Championship event being the highlight.

The Lithuanian enjoyed a spectacular win over Raymond van Barneveld in the Dutchman's penultimate World Championship campaign and has been solid over the course of the season.

As for 'Prime Time' Matthew Edgar, his path to Alexandra Palace was slightly different as the Daventry-based thrower secured his place at the World Championship after coming through a PDPA qualifying event in Wigan.

This tungsten toss-up most certainly has sets in it. In terms of seasonal averages, 180's and leg-win percentage.

Labanauskas just edges it as far as seasonal averages go, with a 91.32 compared to Edgar's 89.11. It's worth noting that the pair have played the same amount of matches this season with Labanauskas striking 26 more maximums than his English opponent.

As far as head-to-head's go, the pair have only met once before, and that came at last year's World Championship - with the Lithuanian recording a 3-1 win over Edgar.

After digesting all the necessary information, Labanauskas' scoring power is superior to Edgar's, but this encounter will be jam-packed with drama, emotion and will be a five-setter, for sure.

Over 4.5 Sets - 1pt @ 7/4

Mark McGeeney v Matt Campbell - 19:15

Campbell to put up a fight

Kicking Saturday's evening session at the Palace sees two debutants duke it out. Canada's Matt Campbell taking on former BDO World Championship finalist, Mark McGeeney.

Stockport-based ace McGeeney has had a fairly solid debut year on-tour since joining the PDC ranks in January. The former BDO no.1's best run this season came in a Players Championship event in Wigan, reaching the Semi-Finals.

As for McGeeney's opponent, Matt Campbell - the Canadian, who only decided to take the sport seriously little over 12 months ago makes his debut at the PDC World Championship after an impressive year on the Championship Darts Circuit tour, taking North America by storm.

In Campbell's debut CDC weekend, he reached the final, losing out to Darin Young - hitting 24 maximums en route. So he certainly has the game.

The Ontario-based thrower's form improved in 2019 - reaching four finals out of ten events, winning two of them.

As far as comparisons go, McGeeney has a superior seasonal average and his maximum-hitting and overall scoring power could be too much for Campbell to handle if the Canadian isn't at his best.

McGeeney boasts a seasonal average of 92.14, firing in 106 maximums spanning over 65 matches. Over ten CDC events, Campbell has an overall average of 86.27, producing 55 maximums over 39 matches.

But the question is, as the standard is raised at the World Championship, just how will Campbell respond to that? McGeeney's big-stage experience should see him come through this one, but it won't be a walkover.

Over 3.5 Sets - 1pt @ 4/7

Raymond van Barneveld v Darin Young - 21:15

Van Barneveld's power scoring could be too strong for USA's Young

As five-time world champion, Raymond van Barneveld enters his final World Championship campaign on Saturday evening, the Dutch star will be looking to stamp his authority on the Alexandra Palace stage from the word 'go'.

Van Barneveld's form in his final year isn't as good as he'd like - a final appearance at the Auckland Masters in a World Series event being the highlight.

The five-time world champion showed signs of resurgence at the Players Championship Finals at the end of November - reaching the last eight, on the back of a run to the last eight at the World Series of Darts finals earlier in November.

As far the opposition goes, van Barneveld comes up against a fellow veteran of the sport in the shape of USA's Darin Young. Now, Young is an ever-present member of the USA team in the World Cup, appearing in ten consecutive campaigns for team USA.

Young narrowly missed out on a place at Alexandra Palace 12 months ago, just losing out to Chuck Puleo. Much like Matt Campbell, Young's qualification route was via the Championship Darts Circuit tour - qualifying as the top-ranked USA player.

All the necessary statistics do point towards a van Barneveld victory. The Dutchman boasts a seasonal average of 92.57 compared to Young's 86.21. As far as maximum-hitting goes, Van Barneveld is far more likely to produce 180's consistently - firing in 96 maximums compared to Young's 38.

Raymond van Barneveld -1 180s Handicap - 1pt @ 6/5