Seeding Makes European Championship Wide Open

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Michael van Gerwen is favourite for the European Championship while Joe Cullen is top seed in what looks a tough tournament to call.

Joe Cullen in action at the European Championships

The 2020 European Championship gets underway on Thursday afternoon and it makes for an interesting tournament.

The top 32 players on the European Tour Order of Merit clash in the European Championship and there’s a very intriguing look to proceedings. 

As a different ranking criteria is used, Joe Cullen is seeded number one of this event with the likes of Michael van Gerwen and Peter Wright down at number five and 15 in the standings. 

The position switch has created an interesting draw and it could pay to look away from the usual suspects. 

Price Not Right for In-Form Iceman

Gerwyn Price has been the man in form for some time now and the Iceman has already claimed the World Series and World Grand Prix crowns this year. The Welshman is never opposed lightly but he looks to have a tough draw in this event and he can be taken on at 4/1.

Peter Wright is housed in the same quarter as Price and those two quality throwers are joined by Krzysztof Ratajski, Gabriel Clemens and Mensur Suljovic. The third section really does look like a minefield and it could pay to look elsewhere. 

Cullen has been in superb form and he can be considered at 25/1 but the Bradford man is likely to have to negotiate Nathan Aspinall to make it to the latter stages of the event.

Michael van Gerwen isn’t at a level where you could consider him worth backing at 3/1 and when looking at the draw it’s clear that the fourth quarter looks the weakest of the event.

De Sousa Ready to Star on Big Stage

Portugal's Jose de Sousa

Jose de Sousa is 20/1 to win in Germany and housed in a favourable section that makes plenty of appeal.

The Special One is producing some almost unbelievable averages on the Pro and Home Tour and it looks like only a matter of time before he breaks through.

De Sousa has yet to produce his best in a big-stage environment, but given the situation with cancelled events, he hasn’t had that many opportunities to show what he can do. 

The Special One takes on an out-of-form Jeffrey de Zwaan in the opening round and there’s little to fear from either the Dutchman or potential second-round opponents Jonny Clayton or Max Hopp. Michael Smith looks the only man capable of stopping De Sousa in the fourth section and Bully Boy has been a long way off his best in recent events. 

The Portuguese-born thrower is averaging 98.09 across the tour this term and if he’s able to get close to those sort of numbers this week it’s going to be difficult for anyone to stop him. 

De Sousa is a relentless maximum hitter, only Peter Wright and Devon Petersen have hit them more frequently than the Special One this year and that scoring-power could be too much for his opponents to handle.

*All odds correct at time of writing

An experienced sports journalist, Henry’s knowledge spans across a number of different areas, including darts and snooker.

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