Paddy Power Champions League
Michael van Gerwen claimed the Paddy Power Champions League of Darts title for the first time with an incredible 11-10 comeback win over Peter Wright in Sunday’s final in Leicester.
Michael van Gerwen followed up last week’s World Grand Prix triumph in Dublin by taking the £100,000 Champions League title, lifting a specially-commissioned belt after winning five matches across the weekend.
The success sees Van Gerwen complete a “Green Sweep” of PDC Premier televised events, with the Champions League having been the only gap in his amazing roll of honour. Van Gerwen topped Group A at the Morningside Arena with wins over James Wade, Michael Smith and Gary Anderson, before edging past Gerwyn Price 11-10 in an outstanding semi-final.
A dramatic final also went all the way, with Wright missing three match darts when leading 10-7 before the Dutchman reeled off four straight legs to claim glory. “It’s incredible for me,” said Van Gerwen. “This tournament was on my bucket list and it’s a really important one for me to win.
“This was a phenomenal weekend for me with a high standard of darts. Peter put me under pressure and I made it difficult for myself in the final. “I missed a few darts on doubles here and there and I shouldn’t have put myself in that position, but Peter missed a couple of clear darts to win the game and I took great advantage of that.
“I played well all the way through the weekend and did everything I had to do. I averaged over 100 in every match but I know I can improve and there’s more in the tank.
“It gives me a lot of confidence because we have lots of big events coming up. It’s nice to have so many tournaments on the calendar and I love to perform on stage, especially when I’m playing well and winning.”
Van Gerwen’s success maintained his record of never having lost a televised final to Wright, bringing back memories of the 2017 Premier League final where the Scot also missed match darts.
Sunday October 20th
Afternoon Session (13.00 BST Start)
4x Group Matches
Peter Wright 10-8 Rob Cross (Group B)
Gerwyn Price 10-6 Daryl Gurney (Group B)
Michael van Gerwen 10-4 Gary Anderson (Group A)
Michael Smith 10-8 James Wade (Group A)
Evening Session (18.30 BST Start)
Peter Wright 11-5 Michael Smith
Michael van Gerwen 11-10 Gerwyn Price
Peter Wright 10-11 Michael van Gerwen