The Bullet is currently World No.17 and will miss out on qualification unless he can outgun his nearest Order of Merit challengers in Milton Keynes. He also admits it will be a weird scenario at the Marshalls Arena, unlike any other ProTour event held before.
“I’m 17 in the rankings. There’s also a possibility that not all the top 16 seeded players are going to come over for it,
you just don’t know what’s going to happen. I can never count my chickens.
“Obviously I’ll be trying my hardest in Milton Keynes to earn that spot. I think I’m about £3,000 behind on the ProTour Order of Merit. “If I can have a good five days in Milton Keynes then I can make it to Blackpool in my own right”.
Dependant on the government statement, due at the start of July, there are multiple ways for the Liverpool ace to make it into the final thirty-two. Over the five day of the Summer Series he could play his way into an automatic place. Failing that other players may opt or be prevented from attending.
But BUnting is intent on overcoming the many challenges he faces in order to compete on the biggest stages once again.
“IF I CAN HAVE A GOOD FIVE DAYS IN MILTON KEYNES THEN I CAN MAKE IT TO BLACKPOOL IN MY OWN RIGHT.
Perhaps Stephen, a passionate LFC fan, will be inspired by Jurgen Klopp’s Liverpool side, who return to action on Sunday!
RAPID Ricky Evans admits he’ll always be a bit “mad” as he aims to finally shake off the oche joker tag with major titles. The Kettering ace is never short on laughs as arguably the wackiest star of the oche and has spent lockdown dressed as a cheerleader and in a blue morph costume on social media.
As per usual with the World No.29 it has been a wacky few months as he’s got kitted up for the Clap For Carers every Thursday night. Evans, 29, said:
“My dad and I have done three Clap For Carers dressing up nights. He collects masks and anyone who knows us knows I am just my dad 30 or 40 years ago. He’s nuts. “He’s got at least 100 masks. He’ll go on ebay and see a Donald Trump mask and buy it. He’ll buy any old rubber latex mask.
“On one Thursday night, I was in a blue morph suit, wearing a PDC shirt on an exercise bike. I’ve been a cheerleader so far as well.” “My dance I did at the Ally Pally in December has been watched a few times and turned into a GIF. I still don’t know what happened then.”
Evans – who threw a 180 in 2.16 seconds in the Worlds three years ago – also also feared he’d be too quick for his own WiFi in the PDC Home Tour.
He added: “My board is in a little darts room that my mum and dad made for me when I was a teenager. I had to tell my mum and dad to stay off WiFi after 6.30 pm.
“Because I’m a quick player it was hard. Usually, I’m always on my tiptoes ready to throw against my opponent. It was weird having no one in front of me. It slowed me down a bit and certainly upset my rhythm.
“The biggest problem was that my phone camera wasn’t able to keep up with my throw, my throw is too quick for WiFi to trust me.
“I was looking forward to all the tournaments and trying to qualify for the big TV events. I’m usually away for 40 weeks a year, I was in 2019 and that was very successful for me.
“I had hit form for a few months just before the lockdown. Now it’s a weird one whether to practice hard or not.“Last year was awesome for me, I qualified for everything apart from the Grand Slam. I was a seed for the Europeans which was great.
“I ran into Michael (van Gerwen) in the Worlds. It wasn’t a 4-0 defeat game, I missed some big chances. But that’s why he’s World No.1 and I’m World No.29.”
Evans also admits that he’s unlikely to stop being the oche madman – unless he starts winning majors. He said: “I’m just me and that might not change ever. I’m serious on the oche. I’m never going to be the most serious player in the world. If I started making semi-finals and finals that jovial stuff would wear off a bit I’m sure. “I think people would get bored of my silly walk-ons and facial expressions. Maybe I could wear a mask!
“Until then I won’t change, I’ll always be a bit mad.”
The Cyclone, Mickey Mansell to his friends, is one of the nicest people on the darts circuit and has had many an impressive moment on the Pro Tour. But why did he suddenly blow so hard after such a calm spell?
One of the best things about having the services of, ‘Darts’ Official Statistician’, Christopher Kempf is that it allows Darts World to combine his unsurpassed numerical knowledge with the Darts World teams long-standing knowledge of many of the game’s other elements.
Here, Ochepedia, as Christopher is known, looks at the numbers behind Michael’s superb and, for many, unexpected return to the darting limelight. Our ‘Coach’ has known and watched Mickey for almost a decade and provides the ‘behind the numbers‘ comments:
Ochepedia – Even today, it seems so unlikely that Mickey Mansell could have won Players Championship 8, blasting his way through a talented field of World Champions and top-16 players to claim his first PDC title. After all, this is the same Mickey Mansell who has not even made a quarterfinal for the better part of four years. The £10,000 earned by the Northern Irishman in his debut win, while all but securing a tour card for the 2019 season, does not even put Mansell into the top 64 in the world.
(Coach – Mickey is a superbly talented player, he combines precision with a very patient, calm, and unruffled style. Not much on the board unsettles him and he uses very little energy during his matches.)
How, then, do we account for the fact that Mansell dispatched his opposition by a combined score of 42-11, never allowing any opponent to throw match darts? How does a player so unheralded make such quick work of four Premier League alumni?
The answer is consistency. Of those 42 legs won by the Clonoe Cyclone, 39 were finished in 18 darts or less. Almost irrespective of his foes’ output, Mansell’s average remained in the mid-90s for leg after leg as the man from County Tyrone dished out 15 and 17 darters, hour after hour. Moreover, if his record of 19 checkouts in 24 attempts (79%) in which he had 3 darts at a double placed him at the level of the world’s top players, his achievement of 23 2-dart checkouts (3-39 odd, 41-98, 100) in 35 attempts placed him well above it.
(Coach: Michael has played almost everyone on the tour over his nine or so years in the PDC. They all know he can play at a very high level and he has defeated most if not all of them before. However, they were, perhaps, used the sub-par Cyclone that has been blowing somewhat weakly for a couple of years before.This event saw Mickey play as he used to.)
All of the exciting and statistically notable features of darts – the 180s, the high checkouts, the 11- and 12-dart legs – are entirely superfluous to a player who plays with such consistency. And in fact, Mansell had zero finishes of 101 or greater, resulting from 30 attempts; only 3 legs in the tournament won in four visits to the board, and a mere 11 180s scored in 53 legs. Perhaps a few stylish visits would have boosted his average or given the commentators something to laud, but one cannot win by a larger margin than a 6-0 whitewash, and Mansell had three of those on Sunday. What need had he to run up the score even further?
(Coach: Once Michael gets moving, and settled he can be very difficult to stop, it takes someone who can outscore him for a long spell and knock him out of his ‘zone’. That day no one managed both!)
Mickey Mansell’s triumph may be the clearest indication yet seen of the effectiveness of 140s in winning legs. The second treble hit in a visit to the board (yielding a 140) gives the biggest boost, in terms of number of darts needed to reach a finish, a double, or win the leg, to a player’s fortunes. The third treble is, of course, always welcome, but the extra benefit tends to be wasted in a leg that the player will win anyway if he hits a 140.
Even 100s, which Mansell also recorded at a prodigious rate, when backed up by solid combination finishing, put just enough pressure on opponents by limiting the number and increasing the difficulty of finishes they can attempt. With 52 100s and 52 140s in 53 legs – very nearly one of each per leg – Mansell wrung every last bit of effectiveness out of each treble scored. Rarely does a player record an average of nearly 107 with his first 9 darts of the leg whilst hitting so few 180s, as Mansell did on Sundays – but if so few 180s resulted in a leg difference of +31 for the day, they were not missed.
(Coach:Now this makes real sense, I have always advocated for the ‘two out of three’ type of approach. It suits Mansell as he is not a show pony who hits 180s in bunches.)
If you like your darts fast and furious, replete with 110+ averages and 170 checkouts, Mickey Mansell may not be the player for you. In that respect, normal service will resume on the PDC circuit once Michael van Gerwen and Rob Cross return for the Premier League and for the German Darts Open. But the fact that Mansell is not the best player in the world is perhaps even more a testament to his achievement in Barnsley this past Sunday. The world number 66 managed to win a tournament by the widest possible margin with a minimum of effort – a feat almost without precedent in the current era of professional darts.
(Coach:Those of us who know Mickey and witnessed his efforts on the Pro-Tour, and during the very first Q-School, are seldom surprised by anything he achieves. His patience and resilience are exemplary and it is always pleasing to see him rewarded!)
The Professional Darts Corporation is pleased to announce that live darts will return on Wednesday, July 8 with the launch of the PDC Summer Series.
The Summer Series will see all 128 Tour Card Holders given the chance to compete in five one-day Players Championship events from July 8-12, played behind closed doors at Marshall Arena, Milton Keynes subject to the UK Government quarantine policy on overseas visitors.
As with all 2020 Players Championship events, prize money will stand at £75,000 per event, with all winnings counting towards the relevant PDC Orders of Merit.
In the event that quarantine restrictions make it impractical for non-UK players to travel to the events, the PDC will announce a revised schedule of non-ranked events for the same dates.
PDC Chairman Barry Hearn said: “Throughout the challenging times of recent weeks we have continuously explored different ways of getting players back on the oche and live darts back on fans’ screens.
“I was proud of our players and staff who broadcast 43 nights of live remote darts through the innovative PDC Home Tour, which thrust darts into the limelight in a unique way at a time when almost all other sports were unable to provide any form of competitive action.
“Prior to the Home Tour, I outlined the three-stage plan for the return of darts, starting with events played remotely, followed by events played behind closed doors, before events can be played in front of crowds.
“I am delighted that we are now able to move on to the second stage of that plan, and hopefully we will be able to safely welcome crowds back to our events in the not-too-distant future.
“The PDC Summer Series will provide a welcome return of live darts for both players and fans alike,
and I’m sure the event will whet the appetite for the prestigious Betfred World Matchplay.”
“We appreciate the patience of our players in recent weeks as we worked to secure these events, and further details will be confirmed to them in due course.”
The PDC understands that players will have further questions regarding these events and we can assure them that as soon as details are able to be confirmed we will release the information appropriately. The PDC’s intention at this time is to confirm the dates and proposed format of the events so that players can begin to prepare for a return to competitive events and plan accordingly. Please be aware that hotel bookings for the Summer Series will be handled centrally by the PDC and players should not contact the Marshall Arena directly to make reservations.
A new Players Championship weekend will be played on March 28-29 in Milton Keynes to replace the postponed European Tour event in Germany.
The European Darts Open in Leverkusen, which was originally planned for March 27-29, has been postponed following measures put in place by the regional federal government in Germany.
As a result, the PDC will now stage two £75,000 Players Championship events at the Marshall Arena on Saturday March 28 and Sunday March 29.
The tournaments will be streamed live online through PDCTV, with two streams available simultaneously throughout each event.
PDC Tour Card Holders and PDPA Associate Members can now enter these events online through the PDC Online Entry System. Entries will close at 1400 GMT on Friday March 20.
The events are currently titled for player entries as Players Championship 9MK and Players Championship 10MK. However, following the close of entries, subsequent Players Championship events in 2020 will be renumbered accordingly.
Rescheduled dates for the two postponed European Tour events will be confirmed in due course.
GLEN DURRANT landed his second PDC ranking title at Players Championship 15 at The Barnsley Metrodome on Saturday.
The opening day of the ProTour double-header weekend saw Durrant double his haul of PDC crowns since joining the professional circuit in January, following up his Players Championship 4 victory in February.
Three-time Lakeside Champion Durrant secured a remarkable result in the semi-finals, defeating Michael van Gerwen 7-2 in the first meeting between the pair to reach the final where he proved too strong for Darius Labanauskas, running out an 8-1 victor.
Durrant’s day started with 6-0 whitewashes over Matthew Edgar and Simon Stevenson, which he followed up with two 6-4 wins over Kyle Anderson and Danny Noppert.
The 48-year-old then defeated Michael Smith 6-4, before convincing victories over Van Gerwen and Labanauskas saw him clinch the £10,000 top prize.
“It feels absolutely fantastic, I can’t put into words how happy I am right now,” said Durrant, who has secured a provisional place in July’s Betfred World Matchplay.
“Last weekend on the Euro Tour was really difficult to me but this weekend has been perfect. I had a fabulous week in practice and I knew I was playing well.
“I was determined to enjoy today but to win another title is pretty special. I joined the PDC for moments like this.
“Before I played Michael [van Gerwen] I asked if I could have his shirt which I immediately regretted as it showed weakness, but he didn’t play his best game and I was able to capitalise.
“I’ve totally exceeded the initial targets I set myself at the start of the year and soon my goals will be changing but I’m not putting too much pressure on myself at the moment.”
A one-sided final between world ranked 70 and 91 saw Durrant punish Labanauskas’ missed darts at double as he raced into a 3-0 lead, before Labanauskas chalked his first leg on the board to make it 3-1.
However, that was as good as it got for Labanauskas, who made history in becoming the first Lithuanian player to reach a PDC ranking final, as Durrant ruthlessly reeled off five consecutive legs to run out victorious in his third PDC final since joining the circuit.
Despite defeat in the final, Labanauskas also continued his strong first year as a PDC professional with his first appearance in a ranking final.
JEFFREY DE ZWAAN captured his second Players Championship title with a brilliant 8-2 win over Stephen Bunting in Wednesday’s Event 14 final in Barnsley.
De Zwaan won his maiden senior title in March 2018 and went on to reach the World Matchplay semi-finals during a breakthrough year.
Having also competed as a Premier League Contender in 2019, De Zwaan has followed up his run to a ProTour final last month by going all the way to claim the £10,000 title at the Barnsley Metrodome.
The Dutchman was in superb form throughout the day, averaging over 100 in five out of six matches on his way to the final, including a 106.5 average in his third round defeat of World Championship finalist Michael Smith.
He also overcame Dave Chisnall and World Championship quarter-finalist Ryan Joyce before averaging almost 104 in his 7-3 semi-final win over former World Youth Champion Arron Monk.
Bunting had also been in fine form as he landed ton-plus averages against Jamie Lewis, Corey Cadby and Jelle Klaasen, while he also saw off Jamie Hughes and Joe Cullen.
The former Lakeside Champion then came back from 5-2 down in his semi-final against Darius Labanauskas to win 7-5.
De Zwaan raced into a 4-0 lead in the final, with his run including two 11-darters as he broke Bunting’s throw to take command.
Bunting hit back in leg five on double 16, but missed his chance to battle back further as tops restored De Zwaan’s cushion at 5-1 and double ten moved the 23-year-old five legs clear.
Bunting responded again in leg eight with a match-high 114 checkout, but De Zwaan landed three 134 scores on his way to a 7-2 lead before taking out 107 for a 12-darter to seal the title in style.
“I played really well today – the feeling was that I was flying, every dart I was throwing was going straight in and that’s a great feeling,” said De Zwaan, who moves up to 36th on the PDC Order of Merit.
“I’m happy with the win. I’m feeling good, my confidence is there and the darts are going great and I’m really happy.”
De Zwaan was a winner on the PDC Unicorn Development Tour last month, and believes that his form is back to that which took him to the World Matchplay semi-finals last July.
“The Development Tour is a really good opportunity to grow in the PDC circuit,” he added.
“In the first tournament I played seven games with a 100 average, and it’s also a great opportunity to grow and get confidence as well.
“Last year I reached the semi-final of the World Matchplay and the pressure grows on you. Now I’ve learned how that feels and I’m dealing with the pressure and playing well again.”
Bunting had won through to his first ProTour final for over 18 months with his form on the day, surpassing a quarter-final appearance on the European Tour in March with Wednesday’s run.
Monk enjoyed his best finish in a Players Championship event since October 2012 as he followed up a quarter-final appearance in Event Ten last month with another strong showing.
Labanauskas, meanwhile, reached the semi-finals on the ProTour for the first time since securing his Tour Card in January.
The Lithuanian defeated Mark Webster, Jermaine Wattimena, Toni Alcinas, Brendan Dolan and Harry Ward on the day before falling victim to Bunting’s fightback in the last four.
The event featured a number of outstanding performances, including a 114.2 average from Peter Wright as he whitewashed Gary Anderson in the last 32.
Krzysztof Ratajski averaged 112.3 in his first round win over Raymond van Barneveld, and went on to make the quarter-finals, while Dave Chisnall and Gerwyn Price also posted 106+ averages.
The next Players Championship double-header will be held on May 18-19 at the Barnsley Metrodome, with two further £75,000 tournaments taking place. Coverage will be streamed from two boards simultaneously at video.pdc.tv.
WILLIAM O’CONNOR claimed his first PDC title at Players Championship 13 in Barnsley on Tuesday.
The opening day of the ProTour mid-week double-header at the Barnsley Metrodome saw O’Connor defeat UK Open Champion Nathan Aspinall 8-4 in just his second PDC final, following up his European Darts Matchplay final appearance in July 2018.
O’Connor, who has competed on the PDC ProTour circuit since 2011, edged out Rowby-John Rodriguez 6-5 in his opening game of the day, before seeing off Luke Humphires and Luke Woodhouse 6-2 to reach the last 16.
There, he produced a stunning display, averaging 105.8 in a 6-4 win over Steve Beaton, which the Irishman followed up with a 6-5 quarter-final triumph over Jeffrey de Zwaan.
A 102.2 average was enough to overcome Daryl Gurney 7-5 in the semi-finals, before a convincing victory over Aspinall saw O’Connor land the £10,000 top prize.
“I’m a bit overwhelmed by it but I’m so happy to have won my first title,” said O’Connor, who will represent the Republic of Ireland at the BetVictor World Cup of Darts in June.
“I’ve been playing well all year but haven’t had any good results, so maybe I’ve used all my luck in one day.
“I’m happy to move up the rankings a bit and now I want to add a couple more titles to my name and see where it takes me.
“I have the game to win more, I just need to be more consistent and produce a lot better than I have been doing over the years, but the same can be said for many players on tour.”
A hard-fought final began with four consecutive breaks of throw, before the pair exchanged holds to make it 3-3 after a tight opening.
O’Connor then hit tops to hold throw once again, and followed it with an 11-dart break to open up a two-leg gap for the first time at 5-3.
The Irish number two made no mistake on double 16 to assert his dominance at 6-3, before Aspinall stopped the rot with a hold of throw.
However, O’Connor showed no signs of wavering as he found double 12 for a 13-darter to go within a leg of the title, before the determined former Tom Kirby Memorial Trophy winner saw off 68 to seal a famous win.
Despite a below-par display in the final, Aspinall continued his sensational form with a first final appearance since being crowned UK Open Champion in March.
The World Championship semi-finalist, who claimed his first PDC title in Barnsley in September 2018, defeated Adrian Lewis 7-4 in a thrilling semi-final in what turned out to be the highlight of the Stockport thrower’s day.
Elsewhere, Justin Pipe made it two quarter-final appearances in just over a month, while Christian Kist enjoyed a return to form with a first quarter-final berth since November 2016.
Departing Dutchman Raymond van Barneveld continued his resurgence with a run to the last 16, which included a first-round defeat of Corey Cadby, while Peter Wright also made it to the last eight.
Premier League stars Gerwyn Price and Michael Smith were joined by Glen Durrant in exiting the tournament before the last 16 stages, while it was a disappointing return to Gary Anderson who was eliminated in the first round.
Wednesday will see the second day of the Players Championship mid-week action in Barnsley.
Players Championship 13 Tuesday April 30, The Barnsley Metrodome Last 16 Christian Kist 6-4 Mark McGeeney Nathan Aspinall 6-0 Robert Owen Peter Wright 6-5 Raymond van Barneveld Adrian Lewis 6-4 Cristo Reyes William O’Connor 6-4 Steve Beaton Jeffrey de Zwaan 6-5 Ricky Evans Justin Pipe 6-5 James Wilson Daryl Gurney 6-5 Danny Noppert
Quarter-Finals Nathan Aspinall 6-3 Christian Kist Adrian Lewis 6-5 Peter Wright William O’Connor 6-5 Jeffrey de Zwaan Daryl Gurney 6-3 Justin Pipe
Semi-Finals Nathan Aspinall 7-4 Adrian Lewis William O’Connor 7-5 Daryl Gurney
ROB CROSS claimed his fourth PDC ProTour title of 2017 with a 6-3 defeat of Adrian Lewis in the final of Tuesday’s Players Championship 21 in Barnsley.
The former electrician has made an amazing introduction to life on the professional circuit this year, and he now tops the Players Championship Order of Merit going into November’s Finals in Minehead.
Cross picked up the £10,000 top prize in Tuesday’s ProTour event with another fine display as he battled through the field before overcoming two-time World Champion Lewis in the final.
Cross began his challenge with a whitewash of Ron Meulenkamp before fending off stiff tests from Craig Gilchrist, Steve West and John Henderson.
He then whitewashed former World Youth Champion Keegan Brown in the quarter-finals, overcame Irish ace William O’Connor for the loss of only two legs in the semi-finals as he set up the tie with Lewis.
Having shared the opening two legs of the final, Cross landed six perfect darts as he won leg three, broke on double ten in the fourth and finished 51 to open up a 4-1 cushion.
Lewis hit back in the sixth before Cross finished 90 on the bull to move 5-2 up, and thought Lewis replied with a maximum and a 76 checkout to claim his third leg, two missed darts to continue his challenge allowed the Sussex ace to finish 64 for victory.
“It’s nice to come out and play the best in the world and compete, and Adrian is fantastic,” said Cross.
“Over the last eight months I’ve learned to pull through the 6-5 games that I might have lost, and that’s how this is possible.
“Winning is a good habit to get into, and the first event I won was majorly important. Instead of coming into the room and saying that I believed I could do it, I knew I could do it, and that’s the difference.
“I’ve got the hunger to win and I want everything. I don’t want to lose a leg, let alone a game, and this is a massive confidence boost for going forward.
“To do what I’ve done this year is fantastic and I’ve over-achieved from my expectations. To go to Minehead as the number one seed, if that was to happen, is an achievement and something to be proud of.
“I’ve only had three or four goes on the TV but I’m starting to feel more comfortable and fingers crossed I can get my best game out up there soon.”
World number four Lewis had been bidding to win his second Players Championship title of the year as he won through to the final with defeats of Brendan Dolan, Joe Murnan, Mike De Decker, Jeffrey de Zwaan, Gerwyn Price and Jermaine Wattimena.
Ireland’s O’Connor followed up his success in Saturday’s Tom Kirby Memorial Irish Matchplay final against Jason Cullen by reaching his first-ever PDC ranking semi-final.
He overcame Jan Dekker, Vincent van der Voort, Jamie Caven, Joe Cullen and top seed Peter Wright as he progressed to the last four on a memorable day in Barnsley.
Dutchman Wattimena also reached the last four, seeing off Ross Twell, Ian White, Kevin Painter, Peter Jacques and Michael Smith along the way.
Last week’s Unibet World Grand Prix champion Daryl Gurney won through to the last 16 before losing out to Price, who missed match darts in his quarter-final against Lewis before the Stoke ace prevailed with an 11-darter in the deciding leg.
The day also saw Dave Chisnall land a nine-dart finish – his second of the year on the PDC ProTour – during a first round win over Ryan Searle.
Wednesday sees the PDC ProTour double-header at the Barnsley Metrodome conclude with Players Championship 22 – the year’s final £75,000 tournament.
Coverage will be streamed live on PDCTV-HD at www.pdc.tv and through a series of bookmakers’ websites worldwide from 12pm.
Following Players Championship 22, the top 64 from the Players Championship Order of Merit progress to compete in the Players Championship Finals at the Butlins Minehead Resort from November 24-26.
Players Championship 21 Tuesday October 10, Barnsley Metrodome Last 16
Peter Wright 6-1 Martin Schindler
William O’Connor 6-4 Joe Cullen
Keegan Brown 6-5 James Wade
Rob Cross 6-5 John Henderson
Michael Smith 6-4 Jonathan Worsley
Jermaine Wattimena 6-4 Peter Jacques
Adrian Lewis 6-2 Jeffrey de Zwaan
Gerwyn Price 6-4 Daryl Gurney
William O’Connor 6-2 Peter Wright
Rob Cross 6-0 Keegan Brown
Jermaine Wattimena 6-2 Michael Smith
Adrian Lewis 6-5 Gerwyn Price
Rob Cross 6-2 William O’Connor
Adrian Lewis 6-2 Jermaine Wattimena
Benito van De Pas won his first senior PDC title by edging out Michael van Gerwen 6-5 in the final of Saturday’s Players Championship Four at the Barnsley Metrodome.
The Dutch duo won through to the final for a second successive day on the ProTour weekend, with van Gerwen having taken victory in Friday’s £75,000 tournament only to see the 23-year-old claim revenge in a deciding leg 24 hours later.
Van de Pas had also lost out to van Gerwen in last year’s International Darts Open event on the PDC European Tour, but he finally went all the way to claim the £10,000 first prize and pick up his first ProTour triumph.
After the pair traded 13-darters to kick off the game, van Gerwen produced legs of 12, 13 and 14 darts to pull into a 4-1 lead in a high-quality contest.
Van de Pas hit back with an 11-darter before van Gerwen took the seventh leg to move to the brink of victory at 5-2, but the youngster hit back with three successive legs to level the contest before a 12-darter in the deciding leg gave him victory.
Van de Pas ended the final with a brilliant 110.24 average after landing seven 180s and a 106 checkout, with van Gerwen averaging 111.72 in defeat as he hit four maximums and a 134 finish.
Van de Pas’ route to the final began with a 6-2 win over Nigel Heydon before he then defeated Jason Wilson and Mark Webster.
The Dutchman then whitewashed Chris Dobey in the last 16, dropped only one leg in the quarter-finals against Alan Norris and overcame Gerwyn Price 6-2 in the semis.
Van Gerwen saw off Mark Frost, Stephen Willard, Matthew Dennant, Simon Whitlock and Jelle Klaasen during his run before knocking out World Champion Gary Anderson 6-4 in the semi-finals.
Price was denied his place in a second ProTour final of the year by van de Pas, but the Welsh ace saw off Nathan Derry, Jermaine Wattimena, Terry Jenkins, Joe Cullen and Max Hopp on the day as he picked up £3,000.
World Champion Anderson was appearing in his second Players Championship semi-final of the year, having defeated Brett Claydon, John Bowles, Shaun Griffiths, Jonny Clayton and Dave Chisnall.
World Youth Champion Hopp knocked out high-flying Mensur Suljovic on his way to a first ProTour quarter-final since the equivalent Players Championship 12 months ago, while Chisnall’s run to the last eight was his best finish on the floor so far in 2016.
Norris followed up his run to Friday’s semi-finals by reaching the last eight before losing out to van de Pas, while UK Open semi-finalist Klaasen was denied at the quarter-final stage by compatriot van Gerwen in his third ProTour quarter-final of the year.
Emerging star Chris Dobey knocked out James Wade and Steve Beaton as he reached the last 16 for a second successive day, with Jonny Clayton and Simon Whitlock also matching their Friday finish by winning through to the fourth round.
Sunday sees the ProTour weekend conclude with a third Players Championship tournament, as 128 players compete for £75,000 in prize money.
Players Championship Four Saturday April 9, Barnsley Metrodome First Round
Michael van Gerwen (1) 6-1 Mark Frost
Stephen Willard 6-3 Alan Tabern
Andrew Gilding 6-3 John Henderson (32)
Matthew Dennant 6-3 Johnny Haines
Simon Whitlock (16) 6-2 Jamie Robinson
Yordi Meeuwisse 6-4 Steve West
Matt Clark 6-5 Mervyn King (17)
Andy Jenkins 6-4 Jan Dekker
Jelle Klaasen (8) 6-1 Andy Parsons
Richie Corner 6-1 Jonathan Worsley
James Wilson 6-4 Jamie Lewis (25)
Ricky Evans 6-5 William O’Connor
Kyle Anderson 6-4 Adrian Lewis (9)
Josh Payne 6-5 Curtis Hammond
Andy Hamilton 6-4 Vincent van der Voort (24)
Ted Evetts 6-1 Matthew Edgar
Dave Chisnall (5) 6-1 Peter Hudson
Magnus Caris 6-4 Paul Nicholson
Keegan Brown (28) 6-4 Nathan Aspinall
Nigel Daniels 6-2 Darron Brown
Robert Thornton (12) 6-1 Simon Stevenson
Jeffrey de Graaf 6-5 Mark Walsh
James Richardson 6-3 Brendan Dolan (21)
Kevin Painter 6-1 Dimitri Van den Bergh
Kim Huybrechts (4) 6-2 Scott Dale
Robbie Green 6-4 Steve Hine
Jonny Clayton 6-2 Jamie Caven (29)
Dean Winstanley 6-3 Ronnie Baxter
Gary Anderson (13) 6-2 Brett Claydon
John Bowles 6-3 Robert Owen
Justin Pipe (20) 6-4 Jyhan Artut
Shaun Griffiths 6-5 Mark Barilli
Ross Smith 6-3 Peter Wright (2)
Dennis Smith 6-3 Steve McNally
Rowby-John Rodriguez (31) 6-1 John Part
Jeffrey de Zwaan 6-3 Terry Temple
Stephen Bunting (15) 6-4 Dirk van Duijvenbode
Cristo Reyes 6-4 Jason Lovett
Alan Norris (18) 6-2 Mike Zuydwijk
Kevin Dowling 6-3 Darren Webster
James Wade (7) 6-3 Brian Woods
Chris Dobey 6-1 Prakash Jiwa
Steve Beaton (26) 6-1 Paul Milford
Tony Newell 6-2 Jim Walker
Benito van de Pas (10) 6-2 Nigel Heydon
Jason Wilson 6-2 Stuart Kellett
Mark Webster (23) 6-3 Vincent Kamphuis
Ray Campbell 6-5 Dick van Dijk
Christian Kist 6-2 Ian White (6)
Andy Smith 6-4 Haruki Muramatsu
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Simon Preston 6-0 Ryan Palmer
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Michael van Gerwen 6-3 Stephen Willard
Matthew Dennant 6-3 Andrew Gilding
Simon Whitlock 6-0 Yordi Meeuwisse
Andy Jenkins 6-5 Matt Clark
Jelle Klaasen 6-4 Richie Corner
Ricky Evans 6-5 James Wilson
Kyle Anderson 6-5 Josh Payne
Andy Hamilton 6-4 Ted Evetts
Dave Chisnall 6-1 Magnus Caris
Keegan Brown 6-2 Nigel Daniels
Jeffrey de Graaf 6-4 Robert Thornton
James Richardson 6-5 Kevin Painter
Robbie Green 6-1 Kim Huybrechts
Jonny Clayton 6-5 Dean Winstanley
Gary Anderson 6-0 John Bowles
Shaun Griffiths 6-4 Justin Pipe
Ross Smith 6-1 Dennis Smith
Rowby-John Rodriguez 6-0 Jeffrey de Zwaan
Cristo Reyes 6-5 Stephen Bunting
Alan Norris 6-3 Kevin Dowling
Chris Dobey 6-5 James Wade
Steve Beaton 6-3 Tony Newell
Benito van de Pas 6-3 Jason Wilson
Mark Webster 6-1 Ray Campbell
Andy Smith 6-3 Christian Kist
Joe Cullen 6-5 Mickey Mansell
Terry Jenkins 6-4 Mick McGowan
Gerwyn Price 6-4 Jermaine Wattimena
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Ronny Huybrechts 6-0 Simon Preston
Mensur Suljovic 6-5 Devon Petersen
Mike De Decker 6-4 Daryl Gurney
Michael van Gerwen 6-2 Matthew Dennant
Simon Whitlock 6-4 Andy Jenkins
Jelle Klaasen 6-3 Ricky Evans
Kyle Anderson 6-2 Andy Hamilton
Dave Chisnall 6-1 Keegan Brown
James Richardson 6-4 Jeffrey de Graaf
Jonny Clayton 6-4 Robbie Green
Gary Anderson 6-1 Shaun Griffiths
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Joe Cullen 6-5 Andy Smith
Gerwyn Price 6-3 Terry Jenkins
Max Hopp 6-5 Ronny Huybrechts
Mensur Suljovic 6-5 Mike De Decker
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Dave Chisnall 6-5 James Richardson
Gary Anderson 6-3 Jonny Clayton
Alan Norris 6-1 Rowby-John Rodriguez
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Max Hopp 6-2 Mensur Suljovic
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Gary Anderson 6-3 Dave Chisnall
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