This Week – Darts World’s Regular Slice of Darting History.

A look back at darting landmarks which took place between the 26th January & February the 2nd……

The King? Still ranked at 21 by the PDC 23 years after first significant title.

23 Years Ago:

Mervyn King secured his first top class event with victory, lifting the crown at the Dutch Open. King, still ranked 21 in the world, took another seven years before claiming his first ‘Major’ title (2004 World Masters). King is yet to claim a PDC major although the International Darts League (King won in 2005) was a joint event. This years Dutch Open takes place this coming weekend with new BDO World Champion Wayne Warren looking to claim more silverware.

10 Years Ago:

The Asset. Paul Nicholson’s career highlight came a decade ago!

Paul Nicholson claimed the Players Championship Finals: In what was probably ‘The Asset’s finest hour he defeated Merv King 13-11 in the final. His defeat of Phil Taylor in the semi final was a huge moment. Winning a dramtic last leg seemed to mark the emergence of Paul as a true threat to the biggest names. Sadly, it also lead to the much hyped “……he better bring his A-Game, cause I’m gonna put him to bed….” narrative of which there was only going to be one winner.

5 Years Ago:

The Silencer – Will Jeff Smith cement his place at Darts’ top table?

Jeff Smith (who returned to the PDC Pro Tour this month via Q School) took the Las Vegas Open, defeating Darin Young in the title match. ‘The Silencer’ had threatened to break through previously but this win marked a transition for Jeff. Within twelve months the likeable Canadian would reach the last four of the BDO world Championships. he went one better the next year, losing out to Scott Mitchell in the final, and cemented a place at Darts’ top table. Jeff’s World Cup (Singles) Title in 2017 was probably the high-point of his, late starting but, eventful career so far.

This Year:

New World Champ Snakebite will take a bow at ‘The Masters’ this weekend. PIC;LAWRENCE LUSTIG

The darts calendar gets fuller every year, this year the Iceland International Games even featured a January darts event. The Dutch Open is up coming and together with the Romanian and Las Vegas Opens may provide future year’s landmarks. Will the PDC’s annual curtain raiser ‘The Masters’ provide ‘tales of darting do’ in future years, the 2020 will feature the first event played by Peter Wright as World Champion!

MVG Halts Price to Claim 5th Title.

Michael van Gerwen won the Ladbrokes Players Championship Finals title for a fifth time with a brilliant 11-9 win over Gerwyn Price in a sensational final.

LADBROKES PLAYERS CHAMPIONSHIP FINALS 2019 BUTLINS RESORT MINEHEAD FINAL PicLAWRENCE LUSTIG GERWYN PRICE V MICHAEL VAN GERWEN MICHAEL VAN GERWEN WINS

World Champion Van Gerwen had been defeated by Price in the semi-finals of the Grand Slam of Darts a week ago, with the sport’s top two current form players meeting again this time in the decider.

Price went within touching distance of claiming a second successive televised title as he sought to follow up his Grand Slam victory with glory at the Butlin’s Minehead Resort, edging into an 8-7 lead in the final.

However, Van Gerwen found one last push to claim the £100,000 title and erase the memories of his loss in last year’s final to Daryl Gurney.

“It feels really good,” said Van Gerwen. “I think I deserved it and I was the better player in the final, but even though we didn’t produce our A-game I think it was a great game to watch.

“I missed a few doubles that kept him in the game but I think this final had everything.

Gerwyn Price fell short in the Players Championships Final.
Pic: LAWRENCE LUSTIG

“I think Gerwyn is good for darts. He’s exciting and he’s a good player and he has done well lately. He deserves every credit and it will be a great rivalry – but today was my day.”

Van Gerwen had landed a nine-darter against Adrian Lewis on Saturday and then overcame Mervyn King in the quarter-finals and Ian White in the semi-finals, seeing off the Stoke ace with an 11-8 victory.

“Everyone played well against me this weekend and I had to do everything in my possibilities to win these games,” added Van Gerwen. “I’m very happy that I did that and I think I did well this weekend.

“I will look now towards the World Championship and it will be my goal to keep hold of that title too, but that’s a couple of weeks away so I will enjoy this win first.”

Price had followed up a clinical quarter-final win over Stephen Bunting – where he averaged almost 109 in a 10-3 victory – by coming from 4-1 down to defeat Chris Dobey 11-8 in the last four.

Despite coming from two legs behind to move 8-7 up against Van Gerwen, the Welshman was left to rue the Dutchman’s late blitz as he was forced to settle for the £50,000 runner-up prize.

“Michael was the better player tonight,” admitted Price. “I’ve got no complaints, and the opening leg probably set the tone for the match.

“I battled back to get in front but Michael was too strong in the end. I’ve had another great weekend and the crowd were fantastic, they gave me great support.”

White produced two 180s in a brilliant deciding leg as he edged out William O’Connor 10-9 to reach his first televised ranking semi-final, finally ending his unwanted run of last eight defeats.

Pic: L Lustig/PDC
SEMI-FINAL MICHAEL VAN GERWEN V IAN WHITE IAN WHITE IN ACTION

“I just needed to get over that line and I’ve done it now,” said White. “I was so happy because everyone kept talking about being in quarter-finals, and hopefully I can progress now.

“Michael Smith and myself have been putting a lot of hard work in and it’s paying off.”

Dobey, meanwhile, followed up October’s appearance in the last four at the World Grand Prix with another strong showing as he picked up a memorable 10-2 quarter-final win over Raymond van Barneveld.

SEMI FINAL GERWYN PRICE V CHRIS DOBEY CHRIS DOBEY IN ACTION
Pic: L Lustig / PDC

Van Barneveld now progresses to his final tournament before retirement at next month’s World Championship, having enjoyed wins over Nathan Aspinall, Joe Cullen and Glen Durrant earlier in the weekend in Minehead.

“For three games I played well and it looked so great but this was a different day and it wasn’t my game,” said Van Barneveld. “I never felt comfortable and every throw it was like three guys hanging on my arm.”

2019 Ladbrokes Players Championship Finals

Sunday November 24

Afternoon Session

Quarter-Finals

Gerwyn Price 10-3 Stephen Bunting

Chris Dobey 10-2 Raymond van Barneveld

Michael van Gerwen 10-6 Mervyn King

Ian White 10-9 William O’Connor

Evening Session

Semi-Finals

Gerwyn Price 11-8 Chris Dobey

Michael van Gerwen 11-8 Ian White

Final

Michael van Gerwen 11-9 Gerwyn Price

ENDS

MVG Stuns Lewis with 9 Dart Leg.

Micheal Van Gerwen announced a return to his best, with a superb 9 dart leg, in his match against Adrian Lewis this afternoon.

MICHAEL VAN GERWEN

MVG often turns on the style against players of a similar speed and fluency to himself and today was no exception. Leading 4-3, but with Lewis not out of it, Micheal hit a maximum 180 to get the leg under-way. He opted for 177 with his second throw, hitting t19 last dart. Two T20s and a smooth D12 finished it off in style.

The Butlins crowd seemed to thoroughly enjoy their brief glimpse of perfection. This was Micheals 6th televised 9 dart leg and followed the path he set down early. He was both the youngest player to hit one and the first to do so without going 180, 180 with the first two turns.

Some observers had commented on the world number one seeming sub-par, in recent months, and wondered if the improvement of other players, such as Gerwyn Price had increased the pressure on the 30-year-old Dutchman.

It seems that MVG is keen to get back to winning way at the business end of the 2019 season.

Woodhouse Triumphs as Wright Bows Out – Player Championship Finals Under Way.

Luke Woodhouse enjoyed a dream big-stage debut at the Ladbrokes Players Championship Finals with a brilliant 6-5 win over Daryl Gurney as the tournament began in Minehead on Friday, where Peter Wright was also knocked out.

Worcestershire’s Woodhouse, 31, produced the most memorable display of his career as he came from 3-1 and 5-3 down to see off Gurney, who missed two match darts in leg nine before watching on as his opponent took out 71 in the decider.

A two-time UK Open qualifier previously, Woodhouse was appearing in front of the TV cameras for the first time but was left celebrating a breakthrough moment against the world number six.

“I’m lost for words – I’m so happy,” said Woodhouse, ranked 71st on the PDC Order of Merit. “It’s massive for me. It was daunting and it took me a couple of legs to get into the game.

“I just wanted to stick in there with him and hope that if he missed a few doubles I could take my chance, and that’s what happened. He didn’t play as well as he usually does and I took advantage of that.

“I don’t fear anybody and on my day, if I click, I really think I can beat anybody. It’s amazing to win my first game on TV – it was almost an out-of-body experience!”

Woodhouse’s win means that he now faces Gabriel Clemens in round two on Saturday afternoon, after the German thrower saw off Mark McGeeney 6-4.

World number seven Wright, meanwhile, also paid for missing match darts as he let a 5-3 lead slip against James Wilson before the Huddersfield ace took the deciding leg.

Wilson will now meet Chris Dobey, who landed a 164 checkout in a comfortable 6-1 win over Spain’s Cristo Reyes.

Michael van Gerwen landed a 170 checkout but had to overcome a scare from Luke Humphries before taking a 6-3 win to open his challenge for a fifth Players Championship Finals title.

Van Gerwen took out the maximum finish on his way to a 4-0 lead, only for Humphries to hit back to 4-3 – but the World Youth Championship finalist crucially missed two darts to level.

The World Champion capitalised to move 5-3 up before sealing victory with a 95 finish which featured two double 19s, ending the game with an average just above 100.

“It wasn’t my best performance but I had some nice finishes in there and a win is a win,” said Van Gerwen. “I did some good things early on but I wasn’t 100 percent focused, so I have to concentrate on myself and play better in the next game.”

Van Gerwen now resumes his rivalry with Adrian Lewis, who came from 6-4 down to win 6-4 against Josh Payne in their first-round tie.

Grand Slam of Darts winner Gerwyn Price – the number one seed for this event – averaged 102 in a strong showing as he defeated Mickey Mansell 6-3, and he now plays Keegan Brown, after the former World Youth Champion saw off Andy Boulton by the same scoreline.

PIC LAWRENCE LUSTIG ROUND 1 GERWYN PRICE V MICKEY MANSELL

Five-time World Champion Raymond van Barneveld began his penultimate tournament before retirement with a superb 99 average as he overcame UK Open champion Nathan Aspinall 6-2.

“My form is there and I can do better than this but I feel confident,” said the veteran Dutchman. “Nathan has had a great year so I was warned and he’s a phenomenal player but I play the board.

PIC LAWRENCE LUSTIG
ROUND 1 NATHAN ASPINALL V RAYMOND VAN BARNEVELD

“There’s no pressure on me and every single round is a bonus, so I just want to play as well as I can. I’m practising well and I believe in myself and everyone knows that if I play my game I can beat anyone in the world.”

Van Barneveld now meets Joe Cullen, who swept past Australia’s Kyle Anderson with a 6-2 victory which was sealed with a 121 finish.

World number two Rob Cross dropped just two legs as he defeated Ron Meulenkamp to set up a second round tie with Jamie Hughes, who was a 6-3 winner against another Dutchman, Jermaine Wattimena.

Second seed James Wade defied two ton-plus finishes from Ted Evetts before taking out 104 to seal a 6-4 win over the youngster, and the left-hander now plays Ricky Evans after the Kettering ace’s narrow 6-5 defeat of Steve Beaton.

World Championship finalist Michael Smith enjoyed a 6-1 win over Martin Schindler and now plays Brendan Dolan, who won by the same scoreline against Ross Smith in their first round tie.

Simon Whitlock produced a rousing comeback from 3-0 down to defeat Dutch prospect Jeffrey de Zwaan, who made a sensational start to their first-round contest.

However, Whitlock finished 88 and 148 in successive legs to begin his fightback, before edging to a 6-5 win in a deciding leg.

Whitlock’s second-round opponent, John Henderson, was another narrow winner as he survived missed match darts from Ryan Joyce, who was unable to convert three chances for victory in the deciding leg of their clash.

Mensur Suljovic came from 5-3 down to deny Kim Huybrechts in a decider, and the Austrian now plays Dutchman Danny Noppert, who won four straight legs from 5-2 down against Ryan Searle before taking the victory.

Suffolk left-hander Ryan Meikle enjoyed the biggest win of his young career by whitewashing Jonny Clayton, the 2017 Players Championship Finals runner-up, in an impressive victory.

The four-time Development Tour event winner’s second-round opponent will be Darius Labanauskas, with the Lithuanian having edged out Harry Ward 6-5 in their opener.

Dave Chisnall hit back from 2-1 down to reel off five straight legs in his 6-2 win over Matthew Edgar and he now plays Mervyn King, who averaged 100 in his narrow 6-5 success over Justin Pipe.

Portugal’s Jose De Sousa, a two-time Players Championship event winner in 2019, enjoyed a winning debut by defeating James Richardson 6-3, and he now plays Stephen Bunting after the St Helens ace’s 6-2 win over Dimitri Van den Bergh.

Lakeside Champion Glen Durrant overcame Scott Baker 6-2 to set up a tie with Max Hopp, who defied a 170 finish from Jelle Klaasen in a 6-3 victory.

Poland’s Krzysztof Ratajski punished Steve Lennon for 16 missed doubles in a 6-1 win which sets up a tie with another Irish ace, William O’Connor, after the World Cup finalist defeated Steve West 6-4.

Ian White was a 6-4 winner against South Africa’s Devon Petersen and now plays Dutchman Vincent van der Voort, who won by the same margin against former World Youth Champion Arron Monk.

Saturday’s play at the Butlin’s Minehead Resort sees the second round and third round split across two sessions, before the £500,000 tournament concludes on Sunday.

2019 Ladbrokes Players Championship Finals

Friday November 22

Afternoon Session

First Round

Main Stage

Stephen Bunting 6-2 Dimitri Van den Bergh

Jose de Sousa 6-3 James Richardson

Glen Durrant 6-2 Scott Baker

Max Hopp 6-3 Jelle Klaasen

Chris Dobey 6-1 Cristo Reyes

Simon Whitlock 6-5 Jeffrey de Zwaan

Michael Smith 6-1 Martin Schindler

Ian White 6-4 Devon Petersen

Stage Two

Darius Labanauskas 6-5 Harry Ward

Mervyn King 6-5 Justin Pipe

Brendan Dolan 6-1 Ross Smith

John Henderson 6-5 Ryan Joyce

Keegan Brown 6-3 Andy Boulton

Ricky Evans 6-5 Steve Beaton

Danny Noppert 6-5 Ryan Searle

Dave Chisnall 6-2 Matthew Edgar

Evening Session

First Round

Main Stage

Krzysztof Ratajski 6-1 Steve Lennon

Gerwyn Price 6-3 Mickey Mansell

James Wade 6-4 Ted Evetts

Mensur Suljovic 6-5 Kim Huybrechts

Luke Woodhouse 6-5 Daryl Gurney

Michael van Gerwen 6-3 Luke Humphries

James Wilson 6-5 Peter Wright

Raymond van Barneveld 6-2 Nathan Aspinall

Stage Two

Ryan Meikle 6-0 Jonny Clayton

Joe Cullen 6-2 Kyle Anderson

Vincent van der Voort 6-4 Arron Monk

Gabriel Clemens 6-4 Mark McGeeney

Adrian Lewis 6-4 Josh Payne

William O’Connor 6-4 Steve West

Jamie Hughes 6-3 Jermaine Wattimena

Rob Cross 6-2 Ron Meulenkamp

Saturday November 23

Afternoon Session (1245 GMT)

Second Round

Main Stage

Gerwyn Price v Keegan Brown

James Wade v Ricky Evans

Mensur Suljovic v Danny Noppert

Luke Woodhouse v Gabriel Clemens

Adrian Lewis v Michael van Gerwen

James Wilson v Chris Dobey

Raymond van Barneveld v Joe Cullen

Jamie Hughes v Rob Cross

Stage Two

Simon Whitlock v John Henderson

Ryan Meikle v Darius Labanauskas

Jose De Sousa v Stephen Bunting

Ian White v Vincent van der Voort

Krzysztof Ratajski v William O’Connor

Glen Durrant v Max Hopp

Dave Chisnall v Mervyn King

Michael Smith v Brendan Dolan

Best of 11 legs

Evening Session

Schedule TBC

Four matches per stage across two stages

ENDS

Gurney Discusses Form and Desire

Daryl Gurney, 2018 Players Championship Finals Winner, has reflected on his last 16 place in the recent BoyleSports Grand Slam of Darts.

Gurney is certain that players need more than just “huge scores”.
Image: Winmau

With the standard on the PDC tour is only going in one direction, Superchin is more than adamant that he will be at the top of this elite performing group of players pushing the sport forward for the next two decades.

Daryl, a prolific power-scorer, said “It’s no longer good enough to just set-up huge scores if you haven’t got the dart in your locker that literally can change an entire game.”

Daryl had been reflecting on this point following his recent match with the hugely in-form Michael Smith where Daryl missed key darts to go into the break at 5-5.

Daryl said “Having time to reflect is a really important thing for me as I’m such a passionate player it often consumes my thinking, but looking back I’m really happy about so many things in my game and how close it is to being right up there with the very best again.

Twice major champion Daryl Gurney.

“Michael showed in that game just how important certain darts are at crucial times to create momentum, which as the game goes on becomes almost unstoppable”

Daryl’s recent semi-final run in the 2019 European Championship saw him lose narrowly to Rob Cross, who went on to win the event but again Daryl reflected on absolutely key crucial moments in that 11-9 defeat that he has been working on from both game management and a strategic approach with his manager Matt Ward.

Matt Ward said “I know I’m massively biased and everyone who knows me on tour knows I am, but I know Daryl is as good a player as anyone on tour, and it’s so frustrating to watch these amazing gladiatorial contests that are literally decided by a width of the wire.

“Every event we enter we make sure Daryl is both ready and focused to win, and it’s that dedication to keep going week after week, especially after serious disappointments, that stands Daryl out as a very special talent.”

Daryl heads to Minehead this weekend to defend his 2018 Players Champion title and kicks off on Friday night against Luke Woodhouse in what promises to be another scintillating tournament following Gerwyn Price’s recent Grand Slam defence, signalling that all these amazing majors have never been so fiercely contested.


A version of this article originally appeared at Winmau.com

Published with permission.

Price Second Favourite For Players Championship Finals.

Ladbrokes have listed Gerwyn Price as the second most likely winner of the Players Championship Finals. The event, taking place in Minehead this week, comes hot on the heels of the Grand Slam of Darts.

PIC: LAWRENCE LUSTIG
GERWYN PRICE: Recently Crowned Grand slam Champion.

World number one Micheal Van Gerwen is still a strong first choice at 6/4, but at 6/1 for Price is clearly ranked ahead of 10/1 for Peter Wright who comes next.

Our columnist JR Lott, who picked Rob Cross for the World Matchplay, points out that 33/1 to for Ian White seems very good value. Even an eachway bet on ‘Diamond’ looks generous.

Ladbrokes Players Championship Finals Odds
Outright Winner
6/4 Michael van Gerwen
6/1 Gerwyn Price
10/1 Peter Wright
16/1 Rob Cross
20/1 Dave Chisnall, Glen Durrant, Michael Smith
25/1 Mensur Suljovic, Nathan Aspinall
28/1 Daryl Gurney
33/1 Ian White, Krzysztof Ratajski
40/1 James Wade
50/1 Jeffrey de Zwaan, Jonny Clayton, Jose De Sousa
66/1 Dimitri Van den Bergh, Gabriel Clemens
80/1 Chris Dobey, Danny Noppert
100/1 Joe Cullen, Raymond van Barneveld, Stephen Bunting, Adrian Lewis
125/1 Bredan Dolan
150/1 Jamie Hughes, Jermaine Wattimena, John Henderson, Simon Whitlock, Vincent van der Voort
200/1 Kyle Anderson, Max Hopp, Mervyn King, Steve West
250/1 Cristo Reyes, Justin Pipe, Keegan Brown, Kim Huybrechts, Ricky Evans
300/1 Darius Labanauskas, Jelle Klaasen, Luke Humphries, Ron Meulenkamp, Ross Smith, Ryan Joyce, Ryan Searle, Steve Beaton, Steve Lennon, Ted Evetts, William O’Connor
400/1 Andy Boulton, Arron Monk, James Richardson, James Wilson, Mark McGeeney, Martin Schindler
500/1 Devon Petersen, Harry Ward, Josh Payne, Luke Woodhouse, Ryan Meikle, Scott Baker
750/1 Matthew Edgar, Mickey Mansell

Odds courtesy sports.ladbrokes.com and correct at time of writing. Subject to fluctuation.

ENDS

Players Championship Finals – Preview

The 2019 Ladbrokes Players Championship Finals begins on Friday at Butlin’s Minehead Resort, as Daryl Gurney begins his title defence against Luke Woodhouse on a packed opening day of action.

LADBROKES PLAYERS CHAMPIONSHIP 2018
FINAL DARYL GURNEY V MICHAEL VAN GERWEN MICHAEL VAN GERWEN
Pic: L Lustig PDC

The three-day event will see the top 64 players from the 2019 Players Championship Order of Merit, following the year’s thirty ‘floor’ events, in action from November 22-24.

Play on the opening two days will be split across two stages, with the action on the main stage in the Skyline Arena accompanied by games in the intimate Reds venue.

The main stage action will be broadcast live on ITV4 in the UK, on PDCTV-HD for Rest of the World Subscribers and through the PDC’s worldwide broadcast partners including DAZN and RTL7.

data:image/gif;base64,R0lGODlhAQABAPABAP///wAAACH5BAEKAAAALAAAAAABAAEAAAICRAEAOw==

Matches from stage two on Friday and Saturday will be streamed live for PDCTV-HD Subscribers at video.pdc.tv.​

Gurney famously sprinted away from the oche to celebrate with family and friends after hitting the match-winning bullseye to defeat Michael van Gerwen in last year’s final.

LADBROKES PLAYERS CHAMPIONSHIP.
Pic: L Lustig/PDC – DARYL GURNEY WINS

Gearing up to face TV debutant Woodhouse in his first assignment of the weekend, the Northern Irishman insists he is taking nothing for granted.

“Winning this event last year is probably my greatest achievement in darts,” said Gurney, whose first-round match will be on the main stage.

“I said at the time it was probably the scariest bullseye I’ve ever hit in my life, but that feeling when it went in is why I play the game.

“Coming into this event as champion means nothing though and I know I will have to be on my game against Luke, who is an up and coming player I rate very highly.”

Van Gerwen, a four-time winner of the Players Championship Finals, is also in action on the main stage as he meets Luke Humphries, who will also compete in the PDC Unicorn World Youth Championship final on Sunday.

Having tasted defeat in the event for the first time since 2014 in his defeat to Gurney, world number one Van Gerwen is keen to regain his crown ahead of his World Championship defence.

“Of course it was disappointing to lose in the final last year, I don’t lose many finals,” admitted Van Gerwen, the 6/4 title favourite in Minehead with sponsors Ladbrokes.

“But on the day Daryl took out the big shots when it mattered, so well done to him, but now I’m coming to win my title back – every tournament I play I turn up to win.

“It’s the last tournament before the World Championship so my goal is to play to a good standard and give myself even more confidence going into Ally Pally.”

Van Gerwen was defeated by Gerwyn Price in the semi-finals of the Grand Slam of Darts in Wolverhampton last Sunday, and the Welshman comes into this event as top seed on the back of retaining his Grand Slam title in Wolverhampton.

A winner of three Players Championship events in 2019, Price is up to a career-high third on the PDC Order of Merit and he will play Mickey Mansell in his opening round tie.

“I’m playing well, I’m up to number three and I probably deserve to be three, maybe two,” said Price.

“I’ve had a good year, 18 months, but it doesn’t happen all the time. I’ve been playing well and it breeds confidence, and I’ve been confident in every tournament for the last six months. I’m just thankful to win this again.

“I’m full of confidence and hopefully I can carry that on to the Players Championship and hopefully I can have a good run.

“I’m coming into the tournament as number one seed but that doesn’t mean too much because top players are scattered everywhere in the list of seeds for this one.”

Elsewhere, Raymond van Barneveld, competing in his penultimate PDC event, will face Nathan Aspinall, who lifted the UK Open title on the Minehead stage in March.

Saturday sees the second round of the £500,000 tournament held in the afternoon session and the third round in the evening session, with play continuing across two stages.

Sunday then sees the action centred on the main stage, with the quarter-finals in the afternoon session and the semi-finals and final in the evening session, along with the PDC Unicorn World Youth Championship final.

2019 Ladbrokes Players Championship Finals
Friday November 22
Afternoon Session (1245 GMT)
First Round
Main Stage
Dimitri Van den Bergh v Stephen Bunting
Jose de Sousa v James Richardson
Glen Durrant v Scott Baker
Max Hopp v Jelle Klaasen
Chris Dobey v Cristo Reyes
Jeffrey de Zwaan v Simon Whitlock
Michael Smith v Martin Schindler
Ian White v Devon Petersen

Stage Two
Harry Ward v Darius Labanauskas
Justin Pipe v Mervyn King
Brendan Dolan v Ross Smith
John Henderson v Ryan Joyce
Keegan Brown v Andy Boulton
Steve Beaton v Ricky Evans
Danny Noppert v Ryan Searle
Dave Chisnall v Matthew Edgar

Evening Session (1900 GMT)
First Round
Main Stage
Krzysztof Ratajski v Steve Lennon
Gerwyn Price v Mickey Mansell
James Wade v Ted Evetts
Mensur Suljovic v Kim Huybrechts
Daryl Gurney v Luke Woodhouse
Michael van Gerwen v Luke Humphries
Peter Wright v James Wilson
Nathan Aspinall v Raymond van Barneveld

Stage Two
Jonny Clayton v Ryan Meikle
Joe Cullen v Kyle Anderson
Vincent van der Voort v Arron Monk
Gabriel Clemens v Mark McGeeney
Adrian Lewis v Josh Payne
William O’Connor v Steve West
Jermaine Wattimena v Jamie Hughes
Ron Meulenkamp v Rob Cross

Saturday November 23
Afternoon Session (1245 GMT)
Second Round
Main Stage
Price/Mansell v Brown/Boulton
Wade/Evetts v Beaton/Evans
Suljovic/Huybrechts v Noppert/Searle
Gurney/Woodhouse v Clemens/McGeeney
Lewis/Payne v Van Gerwen/Humphries
Wright/Wilson v Dobey/Reyes
Aspinall/Van Barneveld v Cullen/Anderson
Wattimena/Hughes v Meulenkamp/Cross

Stage Two
De Zwaan/Whitlock v Henderson/Joyce
Clayton/Meikle v Ward/Labanauskas
De Sousa/Richardson v Van den Bergh/Bunting
White/Petersen v Van der Voort/Monk
Ratajski/Lennon v O’Connor/West
Durrant/Baker v Hopp/Klaasen
Chisnall/Edgar v Pipe/King
M Smith/Schindler v Dolan/R Smith

Evening Session (1900 GMT)
Third Round
Main Stage & Stage Two (four matches per stage)
Schedule of play TBC

Sunday November 24
Main Stage Only
Afternoon Session (1245 GMT)
Quarter-Finals

Evening Session (1900 GMT)
Semi-Finals & Final
Plus PDC Unicorn World Youth Championship Final

Format
First Round – Best of 11 legs
Second Round – Best of 11 legs
Third Round – Best of 19 legs
Quarter-Finals – Best of 19 legs
Semi-Finals – Best of 21 legs
Final – Best of 21 legs

Prize fund
Winner – £100,000
Runner-up – £50,000
Semi-finalists – £25,000
Quarter-finalists – £15,000
Last 16 – £10,000
Last 32 – £5,000
Last 64 – £2,500

Mr Green Sport Players Championship Finals - Draw and Schedule Confirmed

Mr Green Sport Players Championship Finals – Draw and Schedule Confirmed

Mr Green Sport Players Championship Finals - Draw and Schedule Confirmed
Photo: PDC

Former champions Michael van Gerwen and Paul Nicholson will clash in the first round of the Mr Green Sport Players Championship Finals in Minehead next Friday, where top seed Rob Cross will meet Robert Owen.

World number one Van Gerwen has been victorious at the Butlins Minehead Resort for three of the past four years, claiming a trio of Players Championship Finals titles.

The Dutchman will begin his bid to retain the title in the three-day, £460,000 tournament against 2010 champion Paul Nicholson, who is making his first appearance in a televised event for two years.

Shooting star Rob Cross will be the top seed for the event, with rankings based on prize money won in the 22 Players Championship events held this year which saw the Sussex thrower claim four victories in his debut season as a professional.

Cross will play Wales’ Robert Owen, who qualified in 64th place on the Players Championship Order of Merit, in their first round tie on Friday.

Number two seed Daryl Gurney, October’s World Grand Prix has drawn Dutch youngster Jeffrey de Zwaan, while third seed Peter Wright comes up against Steve Hine.

Fourth seed Gary Anderson, the 2014 champion, will begin his challenge for a second title as he plays Northern Irish left-hander Mickey Mansell and fifth seed Mensur Suljovic is up against Andy Boulton.

Dave Chisnall, last year’s beaten finalist, will take on Joe Murnan, while 2011 winner Kevin Painter comes up against James Wade in a bumper first round tie.

Adrian Lewis, a two-time finalist, will play Belgian youngster Mike De Decker, Auckland Darts Masters winner Kyle Anderson plays Dutchman Ron Meulenkamp and eighth seed Joe Cullen – a double Players Championship winner in 2017 – takes on Jamie Caven.

Former finalists Robert Thornton, Mervyn King, Mark Webster and Kim Huybrechts drew James Richardson, Brendan Dolan, Justin Pipe and Chris Dobey respectively.

Five-time World Champion Raymond van Barneveld plays number nine seed Ian White, while Welshman Jonny Clayton – who won his first ranking title in the year’s final Players Championship event – drew Dutchman Jeffrey de Graaf.

Friday’s first round sees play split across two stages at the Butlins Minehead Resort, with the second and third rounds being held on Saturday.

Sunday sees play focused on the main stage, with the quarter-finals in the afternoon session and the semi-finals and final in the evening session, which also features the PDC Unicorn World Youth Championship final between Josh Payne and Dimitri Van den Bergh.

The Mr Green Sport Players Championship Finals will be broadcast live on ITV4 from November 24-26. A small number of Weekend Break Packages are available through www.bigweekends.com

2017 Mr Green Sport Players Championship Finals
First Round Draw & Tournament Bracket
Rob Cross (1) v Robert Owen (64)
Steve Lennon (32) v Zoran Lerchbacher (33)
Richard North (16) v Peter Hudson (49)
Adrian Lewis (17) v Mike De Decker (48)
Joe Cullen (8) v Jamie Caven (57)
James Wade (25) v Kevin Painter (40)
Ian White (9) v Raymond van Barneveld (56)
John Henderson (24) v Darren Johnson (41)
Mensur Suljovic (5) v Andy Boulton (60)
Stephen Bunting (28) v Benito van de Pas (37)
Jonny Clayton (12) v Jeffrey de Graaf (53)
Gerwyn Price (21) v Jimmy Hendriks (44)
Gary Anderson (4) v Mickey Mansell (61)
Jermaine Wattimena (29) v Keegan Brown (36)
Alan Norris (13) v Jelle Klaasen (52)
Steve Beaton (20) v Ronny Huybrechts (45)
Daryl Gurney (2) v Jeffrey de Zwaan (63)
Vincent van der Voort (31) v Robbie Green (34)
Kim Huybrechts (15) v Chris Dobey (50)
Robert Thornton (18) v James Richardson (47)
Dave Chisnall (7) v Joe Murnan (58)
James Wilson (26) v William O’Connor (39)
Kyle Anderson (10) v Ron Meulenkamp (55)
Justin Pipe (23) v Mark Webster (42)
Michael van Gerwen (6) v Paul Nicholson (59)
Steve West (27) v Ryan Searle (38)
Darren Webster (11) v Antonio Alcinas (54)
Mervyn King (22) v Brendan Dolan (43)
Peter Wright (3) v Steve Hine (62)
Peter Jacques (30) v Cristo Reyes (35)
Michael Smith (14) v Jan Dekker (51)
Simon Whitlock (19) v Christian Kist (46)

Schedule of Play
Friday November 24
First Round
Afternoon Session (12.45pm)
Main Stage
Darren Webster v Antonio Alcinas
Robert Thornton v James Richardson
Joe Cullen v Jamie Caven
Dave Chisnall v Joe Murnan
Stephen Bunting v Benito van de Pas
Kim Huybrechts v Chris Dobey
Adrian Lewis v Mike De Decker

Stage Two
Steve Lennon v Zoran Lerchbacher
Justin Pipe v Mark Webster
Richard North v Peter Hudson
Mervyn King v Brendan Dolan
Steve Beaton v Ronny Huybrechts
Steve West v Ryan Searle
Jermaine Wattimena v Keegan Brown
Peter Jacques v Cristo Reyes
James Wade v Kevin Painter

Evening Session (7pm)
Main Stage
Ian White v Raymond van Barneveld
Mensur Suljovic v Andy Boulton
Rob Cross v Robert Owen
Daryl Gurney v Jeffrey de Zwaan
Gary Anderson v Mickey Mansell
Michael van Gerwen v Paul Nicholson
Peter Wright v Steve Hine

Stage Two
Simon Whitlock v Christian Kist
Gerwyn Price v Jimmy Hendriks
James Wilson v William O’Connor
John Henderson v Darren Johnson
Vincent van der Voort v Robbie Green
Jonny Clayton v Jeffrey de Graaf
Kyle Anderson v Ron Meulenkamp
Michael Smith v Jan Dekker
Alan Norris v Jelle Klaasen

Saturday November 25
Afternoon Session (12.45pm)
Second Round
Main Stage
Chisnall/Murnan v Wilson/O’Connor
Suljovic/Boulton v Bunting/Van de Pas
Gurney/De Zwaan v Van der Voort/Green
Cross/Owen v Lennon/Lerchbacher
G Anderson/Mansell v Wattimena/Brown
Van Gerwen/Nicholson v West/Searle
Wright/Hine v Jacques/Reyes

Stage Two
D Webster/Alcinas v King/Dolan
K Huybrechts/Dobey v Thornton/Richardson
Clayton/De Graaf v Price/Hendriks
North/Hudson v Lewis/De Decker
K Anderson/Meulenkamp v Pipe/M Webster
Norris/Klaasen v Beaton/R Huybrechts
Cullen/Caven v Wade/Painter
Smith/Dekker v Whitlock/Kist
White/Van Barneveld v Henderson/Johnson

Evening Session (7pm)
Third Round
Main Stage
Cross/Owen/Lennon/Lerchbacher v North/Hudson/Lewis/De Decker
G Anderson/Mansell/Wattimena/Brown v Norris/Klaasen/Beaton/R Huybrechts
Van Gerwen/Nicholson/West/Searle v D Webster/Alcinas/King/Dolan
Wright/Hine/Jacques/Reyes v Smith/Dekker/Whitlock/Kist

Stage Two
Chisnall/Murnan/Wilson/O’Connor v K Anderson/Meulenkamp/Pipe/M Webster
Suljovic/Boulton/Bunting/Van de Pas v Clayton/De Graaf/Price/Hendriks
Cullen/Caven/Wade/Painter v White/Van Barneveld/Henderson/Johnson
Gurney/De Zwaan/Van der Voort/Green v K Huybrechts/Dobey/Thornton/Richardson

Sunday November 26
Afternoon Session (12pm)
Quarter-Finals

Evening Session (7pm)
Semi-Finals

PDC Unicorn World Youth Championship Final
Mr Green Sport Players Championship Final

Format
First Round – Best of 11 legs
Second Round – Best of 11 legs
Third Round – Best of 19 legs
Quarter-Finals – Best of 19 legs
Semi-Finals – Best of 21 legs
Final – Best of 21 legs
World Youth Championship Final – Best of 11 legs