Testing group for Van Gerwen in bwin Grand Slam of Darts

Michael van Gerwen will begin his defence of the bwin Grand Slam of Darts title against Jonny Clayton, Joe Murnan and Gary Robson following the group stage draw for the Wolverhampton event.

The 32-player tournament features stars of the PDC and BDO systems from November 10-18 at the Aldersley Leisure Village in Wolverhampton, live on Sky Sports.

Van Gerwen is aiming for a record fourth successive Grand Slam of Darts crown in the £450,000 tournament, with the world number one and top seed heading Group A.

The Dutchman opens his title defence against debutant Robson on Saturday, and will also face Players Championship Finals runner-up Clayton and qualifier Murnan in the round-robin phase.

World Champion Rob Cross has been drawn with reigning World Youth Champion Dimitri Van den Bergh, Ryan Searle and Mark McGeeney in Group H.

Newly-crowned back-to-back televised title winner James Wade heads Group C, where the two-time Wolverhampton finalist is joined by Keegan Brown, Mark Webster and Wesley Harms.

2012 Grand Slam winner Raymond van Barneveld joins seeded star Michael Smith, Poland’s Krzysztof Ratajski and World Masters winner Adam Smith-Neale in Group B.

Former Grand Slam finalist Gary Anderson headlines Group D alongside Ian White, qualifier Steve Hine and German debutant Michael Unterbuchner.

Number two seed Peter Wright has been drawn in Group E alongside Max Hopp, Josh Payne and Jim Williams, while number six seed Mensur Suljovic plays Germany’s Martin Schindler and former Lakeside Champions Stephen Bunting and Scott Mitchell in Group G.

Reigning Lakeside Champion Glen Durrant will challenge seventh seed Simon Whitlock in Group F, alongside Gerwyn Price and qualifier Andrew Gilding.

The opening group matches will be held on Saturday November 10, with play across two sessions, before Sunday November 11 sees the second group games.

The final group matches will take place on Monday and Tuesday, with the top two players from each group progressing to the last-16 knockout stage.

The bwin Grand Slam of Darts will be held from November 10-18 at the Aldersley Leisure Village.

2018 bwin Grand Slam of Darts

Group A

(1) Michael van Gerwen

Jonny Clayton

Joe Murnan

Gary Robson


Group B

(8) Michael Smith

Raymond van Barneveld

Krzysztof Ratajski

Adam Smith-Neale


Group C

(5) James Wade

Keegan Brown

Mark Webster

Wesley Harms


Group D

(4) Gary Anderson

Ian White

Steve Hine

Michael Unterbuchner


Group E

(2) Peter Wright

Max Hopp

Josh Payne

Jim Williams


Group F

(7) Simon Whitlock

Gerwyn Price

Andrew Gilding

Glen Durrant


Group G

(6) Mensur Suljovic

Stephen Bunting

Martin Schindler

Scott Mitchell


Group H

(3) Rob Cross

Dimitri Van den Bergh

Ryan Searle

Mark McGeeney


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