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Raymond van Barneveld is aiming to beat great rival Phil Taylor on TV for the first time since 2008 when the stars of the McCoy’s Premier League visit Sheffield on Thursday, with MODUS stars James Wade and Simon Whitlock also in action at the Motorpoint Arena.

Photo: Michael Cooper/PDC

‘Barney’ heads into his clash with ‘The Power’ fresh from a stunning display in Nottingham last week, where he recorded his highest ever televised average in his triumph over Kevin Painter.

“It’s a big achievement for me and I know now, with these darts, that in the future I can hit averages like this in every game,” said van Barneveld.

“I’m hoping to play well against Phil. Everything has to be right when you play him and you do always get chances, but you always have to hit them because he never seems to miss.

“He’s already qualified and I want to be one of the three players alongside him in the Play-Offs.

“It’s so close in the league season and that’s what we want. I think that even in week 14 there will be players needing to win to get into the Play-Offs.”

The popular Dutchman sits in joint second in the McCoy’s Premier League table with Whitlock, who faces Painter in the steel city.

‘The Wizard’ also heads to Yorkshire on the back of a brilliant performance, after demolishing Gary Anderson last week.

“You have to hit a 100 average to win these days – if you don’t you’re in trouble,” said the Australian. “Anything over 95 is good, but if you throw over 100 you’ll win a lot of games.

“The way the McCoy’s Premier League season is going at the moment it’s going to be a very tight finish. The for and against is important and as long as I’m in the top four I’ll be very happy.

“My goal is to make the top four and then see where I can go from there, and I’m on course for that at the moment.”

Wade faces reigning champion Anderson in the opening match of the evening. ‘The Machine’ will be hoping to bounce back from his controversial defeat at the hands of Adrian Lewis last week.

That match is one of two for Anderson as fixtures are rebalanced after his absence a fortnight ago. The Scotsman faces Andy Hamilton in the final match of the night, while Lewis has a week off, having already played ten matches.

Audio interviews with the victorious players will be available exclusively to MODUS elite members. Click here for details of how to subscribe.

By Chris Murphy

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