Since losing to Raymond van Barneveld in the quarter-finals last year, Van Gerwen has gone on an incredible winning streak — claiming a staggering 26 TOURNAMENTS.
Nobody else across the sporting landscape, certainly no one in darts before, has been as comprehensively dominant as Mighty Mike. And after claiming his second world title with an utterly ruthless performance, Van Gerwen, 27, said:
“This is the most important one. I’ve worked really hard and this means a lot to me.
“Everyone was saying to me I need to win a second one to join the big boys — and this feels phenomenal.”
There was drama late on when someone ran on stage and NICKED the trophy from the plinth while Van Gerwen was throwing for the title — before being escorted away by security men.
VAN THE MAN
Michael van Gerwen produces greatest performance of his career to set up final with Gary Anderson
needs a treble
Gary Anderson keeps hopes of third world darts title alive despite rival Dave Chisnall’s 21 180s in quarters
PO AND ARROWS
Darts fans in fancy dress and Teletubbies costumes arrive at Alexandra Palace ahead of World Darts quarter-finals
The quality in this year’s tournament has been exceptional with more 180s (708) than ever before — and with a world-record 42 maximums in the final. The best individual performance came on New Year’s Day when Van Gerwen hit an astonishing three-dart average of 114.05 — smashing the 15-year-old world championship record set by Phil Taylor.
The question, of course, was whether the world No 1 would replicate that in the final.
He was clearly up for the battle and proved he was still on top form by taking out 122 in the opening leg of the match.
Yet Anderson (left), the world No 2, always refuses to be bullied and after Van Gerwen missed two darts in the third set, he took advantage to lead 2-1.
However, any hopes Anderson had of claiming a third straight title wilted within half an hour — and four straight sets.