Michael van Gerwen wins the World Grand Prix (Picture: Kieran Cleeves/PDC)
Michael van Gerwen wins the World Grand Prix (Picture: Kieran Cleeves/PDC)

Darts results: Michael van Gerwen wins World Grand Prix title after beating Nathan Aspinall 5-3 in Leicester


Michael van Gerwen is the World Grand Prix champion for a sixth time after defeating Nathan Aspinall 5-3 in a memorable final at Leicester's Morningside Arena.

  • Scroll down for full leg-by-leg report and stats

The Dutchman appeared to be coasting towards what would have been just the second whitewash in a World Grand Prix final when leading 4-0 in sets and averaging close to 100 but his opponent used his trademark fighting spirit to end MVG's hopes of emulating Phil Taylor's 6-0 triumph over Dave Chisnall back in 2013.

One set quickly turned into a second and by the time Aspinall got a his third on the board - all by 3-1 scorelines - van Gerwen's title odds had drifted dramatically from 1/500 to just 1/6 as pressure continued to build.

Roared on by the vast majority of the crowd, the Stockport thrower looked as though he'd run out of gas when falling 2-0 down in the eighth set but again he pulled himself from off the canvas to win the next two and force a deciding leg.

Aspinall reached a finish first but spurned darts at double tops and double 10 before MVG finally dragged himself over the line to win his third major of the season and a cheque for ยฃ120,000.

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"For me to have this trophy back feels amazing," said Van Gerwen, who has also won the Premier League and World Matchplay this season. "It's great to have this tournament back in my hands but I had to battle for it really hard.

"When a guy like Nathan puts his relaxed mode on he can play some phenomenal darts but I'm glad I won this one. It was a tough one. I wasn't panicking at all - I think I did all the damage early doors. I think this was great for darts - I was 4-0 up and Nathan never gave up, he kept battling."

Van Gerwen was also full of praise for Aspinall's return from a serious wrist injury which kept him sidelined for six weeks at the start of 2022.

"Nathan has been struggling with such a bad injury on his arm, he's been a credit to sport in the last year," added the Dutchman, who ended up with a slightly lower average of 91.07 compared to Aspinall's 91.88, won just two legs more overall with 18 and hit three fewer 180s with six. "He battled back and I think that is the difference between a winner and a loser, and I think he was a winner tonight."

Aspinall paid tribute to Van Gerwen's triumph, saying: "This week, Michael has been amazing - he's back to his best and he's been the deserved winner of this tournament.

"When I was 4-0 down I just wanted to win a set and give him a bit of a game, and I did that. I wanted to make him win it, and he did.

"He's been phenomenal all week but I never gave in. It's another final and I'm very happy."

MICHAEL VAN GERWEN ROLL OF HONOUR

  • 3x World Champion (2014, 2017, 2019)
  • 2x World Matchplay champion (2015, 2016)
  • 6x Premier League champion (2013, 2016, 2017, 2018, 2019, 2022)
  • 5x World Grand Prix champion (2012, 2014, 2016, 2018, 2019)
  • 3x UK Open champion (2015, 2016, 2020), 3x Grand Slam of Darts champion (2015, 2016, 2017)
  • 4x European champion (2014, 2015, 2016, 2017)
  • 5x Masters champion (2015, 2016, 2017, 2018, 2019)
  • 6x Players Championship Finals champion ( 2013, 2015, 2016, 2017, 2019, 2020)
  • 4x World Series of Darts Finals winner (2015, 2016, 2017, 2019)
  • 3x World Cup winner (2014, 2017, 2018) & 12 televised World Series titles.
  • Senior Career PDC titles: 149
  • Televised PDC Titles/Finals: 60/81
  • Major Titles/Finals: 44/56
  • Titles this season: 9 (TV: 4)

Nathan Aspinall 3-5 Michael van Gerwen: Leg-by-leg report, statistics and highlights

  • Format: Best of nine sets. All Sets are the best of five legs. All legs must begin and end with a double, meaning that a player must hit a double before he can begin scoring in each leg.

Averages

  • Aspinall: 91.88
  • MVG : 91.07

180s

  • Aspinall: 9
  • MVG : 6

Doubles

  • Aspinall: 16/46 (34.8%)
  • MVG : 18/39 (46.6%)

Highest Checkouts

  • Aspinall: 89
  • MVG : 116


SET EIGHT SCORE: Nathan Aspinall 2-3 Michael van Gerwen

  • Leg Five
    Aspinall misses two darts to force a deciding set having been 4-0 down before Van Gerwen finally, finally gets the job done on double 10 to end a remarkable final that could have finished an hour ago!
    Aspinall 2-3 MVG
  • Leg Four
    MVG takes five darts to get away and fails to record a 100+ score in his next four visits as Aspinall breaks with a 17-darter to force a deciding leg in this set. He now has the darts!
    Aspinall 2-2 MVG
  • Leg Three
    Aspinall keeps the match alive with a comfortable hold of throw in 17 darts but he'll need to break the MVG throw in the next or it's game over.
    Aspinall 1-2 MVG
  • Leg Two
    The panic button looks like it's been released for MVG as he punishes Aspinall for a missed dart at tops for 114 checkout by pinning double 10 for a scrappy nine-dart hold.
    Aspinall 0-2 MVG
  • Leg One (Aspinall to throw first)
    Van Gerwen lets out a roar that you can hear above the disgruntled sounds of the crowd after pinning double 10 with his last dart in hand after Aspinall narrowly missed tops for a 120 checkout.
    Aspinall 0-1 MVG

FIFTH INTERVAL: Nathan Aspinall 3-4 Michael van Gerwen

Sky Bet latest odds: Michael van Gerwen was 1/500 at 4-0 up but now he's 1/6! Aspinall is just 7/2 to pull off arguably the greatest comeback in a major final. Click here now for all the Sky Bet live darts markets including most 180s & highest checkout.

Averages

  • Aspinall: 92.92
  • MVG : 93.48

180s

  • Aspinall: 9
  • MVG : 5

Doubles

  • Aspinall: 14/36 (38.9%)
  • MVG : 15/33 (45.5%)

Highest Checkouts

  • Aspinall: 89
  • MVG : 116


SET SEVEN SCORE: Nathan Aspinall 3-1 Michael van Gerwen

  • Leg Four
    Aspinall has the Morningside Arena in the palm of his hand as a ninth 180 - which came after MVG's second successive scoreless visit - paves the way for a set clinching 19-darter, even though he missed four attempts at a double before pinning two fives.
    Aspinall 3-1 MVG
  • Leg Three
    After his little wobble, van Gerwen temporarily looks reborn when he follows up a visit of 140 with his fifth 180 but he then misses four attempts from 32 and Aspinall breaks again in 14 darts!
    Aspinall 2-1 MVG
  • Leg Two
    MVG pulls the electricity out of the crowd with a sublime 12-darter featuring scores of 160, 140, 140 and a 61 checkout to break back.
    Aspinall 1-1 MVG
  • Leg One (MVG to throw first)
    The pressure seems to be getting to MVG, who spurns two attempts at double eight before Aspinall makes him pay by completing a 14-dart break of throw. Can he capitalise on this?!
    Aspinall 1-0 MVG

SET SIX SCORE: Nathan Aspinall 3-1 Michael van Gerwen

  • Leg Four
    He couldn't, could he?! Aspinall is extremely pumped up now as a classy 15 darter - with MVG back on 136 - seals another set and suddenly the comeback doesn't seem quite so unlikely. The Aspinall is only trailing 14-11 in the leg count which shows how well he's been playing overall.
    Aspinall 3-1 MVG
  • Leg Three
    Fantastic from Aspinall, who takes out 89 with single 19, treble 20 and double five to deny MVG a chance to finish 44 following a pressurising visits of 140, 139 and 140.
    Aspinall 2-1 MVG
  • Leg Two
    Aspinall's seventh 180 of the match is too late to save him in this leg, which van Gerwen takes in 15 darts to level the set and move closer to the finishing line again.
    Aspinall 1-1 MVG
  • Leg One (Aspinall to throw first)
    It's perhaps too early to think about Aspinall producing the biggest comeback in darts history but he'll be heartened by MVG's poor display in that leg, which he wins in 19 darts with his opponent back on 140 after a very slow start.
    Aspinall 1-0 MVG

FOURTH INTERVAL: Nathan Aspinall 1-4 Michael van Gerwen

Sky Bet latest odds: If anyone can produce an epic comeback it's Aspinall but the most lively betting race is who will hit 180s. The Asp is 1/6 and MVG is 13/2. Click here now for all the Sky Bet live darts markets including most 180s & highest checkout.

Averages

  • Aspinall: 92.89
  • MVG : 94.66

180s

  • Aspinall: 6
  • MVG : 4

Doubles

  • Aspinall: 8/21 (38.1%)
  • MVG : 13/24 (54.2%)

Highest Checkouts

  • Aspinall: 57
  • MVG : 116

SET FIVE SCORE: Nathan Aspinall 3-1 Michael van Gerwen

  • Leg Four
    A huge roar from the crowd greets Aspinall converting tops for a set-sealing 20-darter and the Stockport man throws his arms aloft in relief at preventing the whitewash defeat! He really deserved that, and is still averaging over 92 over five sets of double-start darts.
    Aspinall 3-1 MVG
  • Leg Three
    The Asp looks as though he's carved out a pressure-free dart at a double to break MVG until the Dutchman throws a 180 to leave himself 30 - but nevertheless he pins double 16 with his first attempt for a classy and nerveless 13 darter.
    Aspinall 2-1 MVG
  • Leg Two
    Aspinall keeps the match alive with a finish from 57 to complete an impressive 15-darter. Can he win two more to finally get a set on the board?
    Aspinall 1-1 MVG
  • Leg One (MVG to throw first)
    This is ruthless. Three 100+ scores in four visits from Aspinall leave him 40 but he doesn't get a chance to take it out as MVG checks out from 66 to complete a 14 darter.
    Aspinall 0-1 MVG

THIRD INTERVAL: Nathan Aspinall 0-4 Michael van Gerwen

Sky Bet latest odds: It's pretty much all over now with MVG 1/500 for glory and Aspinall way out at 33/1. Click here now for all the Sky Bet live darts markets including most 180s & highest checkout.

Averages

  • Aspinall: 91.6
  • MVG : 96.08

180s

  • Aspinall: 6
  • MVG : 3

Doubles

  • Aspinall: 5/17 (29.4%)
  • MVG : 12/23 (52.2%)

Highest Checkouts

  • Aspinall: 50
  • MVG : 116

SET FOUR SCORE: Nathan Aspinall 1-3 Michael van Gerwen

  • Leg Four
    MVG produces successive scores of 140 and 174 to leave himself 40, which he takes out for a set sealing 17-darter with Aspinall waiting to come back on 95. He's now one set away from achieving the second ever whitewash in a World Grand Prix final. The first was Phil Taylor's 6-0 thrashing of Dave Chisnall.
    Aspinall 1-3 MVG
  • Leg Three
    Van Gerwen ends a very long wait for his third 180 to follow up visits of 120 and 140, but despite missing four darts at the outer ring, he eventually pins double nine with his last in hand to break Aspinall, who fluffed three of his own attempts.
    Aspinall 1-2 MVG
  • Leg Two
    The Asp brings the crowd to their feet when a timely sixth 180 leaves him 84 but after MVG fails to take out 94, he spurns two darts at double 12 for a crucial break. The Dutchman returns to pin tops and we're all square.
    Aspinall 1-1 MVG
  • Leg One (Aspinall to throw first)
    Aspinall won't give up the ghost and holds his nerve on tops - with MVG also waiting on 40 - to hold his throw with a steady 16 darter. He really needs to win this set.
    Aspinall 1-0 MVG

SET THREE SCORE: Nathan Aspinall 2-3 Michael van Gerwen

  • Leg Five
    Van Gerwen continues his march towards a sixth World Grand Prix title as four successive 100+ visits leaves him 56, which he takes out on tops to go 3-0 up in sets. Only three legs so far have been won in over 15 legs by either player. Incredible standard!
    Aspinall 2-3 MVG
  • Leg Four
    Aspinall's fifth maximum of the match doesn't really give him much breathing space as MVG manages three successive visits of 100 to leave 141 but his dart at treble 19 goes into the 7s and ends his checkout attempt. The Stockport man keeps his cool on double eight for a 15-darter to force a deciding leg.
    Aspinall 2-2 MVG
  • Leg Three
    This really is a frightening standard from van Gerwen as scores of 120, 97, 140, 128 leave him 16, which he takes out at the first attempt for a 13 darter. He's averaging just a shade under 100 right now.
    Aspinall 1-2 MVG
  • Leg Two
    Aspinall must have been relieved to see MVG fail to hit a starting double with his first dart and he uses the momentary lack of pressure to take control of the leg and win it comfortably in 16 darts.
    Aspinall 1-1 MVG
  • Leg One (MVG to throw first)
    Aspinall threatens a break with scores of 160, 97 and 140 but he misses double 14 for a 104 checkout and MVG sticks the knife in deeper by taking out 112 to seal a 15-dart hold.
    Aspinall 0-1 MVG


SECOND INTERVAL: Nathan Aspinall 0-2 Michael van Gerwen

Sky Bet latest odds: MVG is now 1/16 favourite to triumph while Nathan Aspinall is 7/1 to launch an incredible comeback good enough to lift the trophy. He's not playing badly though, far from it. Click here now for all the Sky Bet live darts markets including most 180s & highest checkout.

Averages

  • Aspinall: 92.12
  • MVG : 101.32

180s

  • Aspinall: 3
  • MVG : 2

Doubles

  • Aspinall: 2/7 (28.6%)
  • MVG : 6/11 (54.6%)

Highest Checkouts

  • Aspinall: 24
  • MVG : 116


SET TWO SCORE: Nathan Aspinall 2-3 Michael van Gerwen

  • Leg Five
    Aspinall loses his advantage of throw when failing to get away at the first attempt and MVG makes him pay with an opening 120 followed by a 140. The Asp rallies with scores of 134 and 140 but despite leaving 40 after 18 darts, his opponent picks off tops before he had a chance to go for it.
    Aspinall 2-3 MVG
  • Leg Four
    The standard of darts from both players is extremely high right now and a wonderful visit of 171 from MVG leaves him 32, which he takes out for a classy 14-darter.
    Aspinall 2-2 MVG
  • Leg Three
    Aspinall's third 180 - which came after dropping his third dart - puts him in pole position to hold his throw and although MVG puts on pressure with his second, the Asp pinds double eight with his last dart in hand after his opponent had spurned an effort at tops.
    Aspinall 2-1 MVG
  • Leg Two
    The pair exchange 180s midway through this leg to get the crowd on their feet but it's MVG who takes the leg with a superb 13-darter to level the set.
    Aspinall 1-1 MVG
  • Leg One (Aspinall to throw first)
    Aspinall comes back on as a man possessed, opening up with a visit of 160 and maintaining the momentum en route to a 13 darter, with MVG applying the pressure on 84.
    Aspinall 1-0 MVG

FIRST INTERVAL: Nathan Aspinall 0-1 Michael van Gerwen

Sky Bet latest odds: MVG is now hot 1/7 favourite to win his sixth World Grand Prix title while Nathan Aspinall is 4/1 to bounce back from this early setback and lift this trophy for the first time. Still a long way to go. Click here now for all the Sky Bet live darts markets including most 180s & highest checkout.

Averages

  • Aspinall: 86.07
  • MVG : 93.94

180s

  • Aspinall: 1
  • MVG : 0

Doubles

  • Aspinall: 0/2 (0/2)
  • MVG : 3/5 (60%)

Highest Checkouts

  • Aspinall: N/A
  • MVG : 116


SET ONE SCORE: Nathan Aspinall 0-3 Michael van Gerwen

  • Leg Three
    Van Gerwen wraps up the opening set in double quick time with a second successive 15-darter, which started perfectly with a visit of 160 and ended with a checkout of 58 when Aspinall waited on 102.
    Aspinall 0-3 MVG
  • Leg Two
    Nathan Aspinall throws his 20th 180 of the week to take control after visits of 100 and 134 but he misses two darts at double 16 to level the set and MVG punishes him with an 83 finish to complete a 15-darter.
    Aspinall 0-2 MVG
  • Leg One (MVG to throw first)
    Well my first tip for the night is already in as both players miss a starting double with their first dart! You've got to love an odds-against bet that comes in after 20 seconds. Michael van Gerwen goes on to hold his throw with a brilliant finish from 116 which is his 11th ton+ out of the week.
    Aspinall 0-1 MVG


1945: The players are now making their way out to the stage so let the drama begin...

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1940: You probably have time to skim ready by big final preview by clicking here but to save you time I've gone for a 5-2 scoreline in MVG's favour and have also picked out these three tips.


1930: With time running out before the final, let's quickly run through the overall tournament stats...

  • Tournament Average
    Aspinall: 85.93 (19 sets, 83 legs)
    Van Gerwen: 93.42 (15 sets, 60 legs)
  • Tournament 180s (180s per leg)
    Aspinall: 19 (0.22)
    Van Gerwen: 13 (0.22)
  • Checkout %
    Aspinall: 45.37% (49/108)
    Van Gerwen: 42.42% (42/99)
  • Double-in %
    Aspinall: 38.24% (83/217)
    Van Gerwen: 53.64% (59/110)
  • 100+ checkouts (per leg won) & high checkout
    Aspinall: 6 (0.12) & 138
    Van Gerwen: 10 (0.24) & 167

It's hard enough averaging over 90 for one match of double-start darts - even in the first round - so for Michael van Gerwen to be at 93 after 15 sets across his four matches shows just how dominant he's been this week.

He only dipped fractionally below 90 once in a 2-0 win over Gary Anderson while he came agonisingly close to posting his fifth World Grand Prix 100+ average ever during an absolute masterclass against Chris Dobey.

The way his confidence is growing, I wouldn't be that surprised if he can post 100+ in a World Grand Prix final for the second time in his career having last emulated Phil Taylor's historic feat in the 2016 edition, when winning his third of five titles.

The real key to all this has been his doubling at both ends of the leg - but particularly at the start. His double-in percentage of 46% is far superior to Nathan Aspinall's 38.24% and if there's a big discrepancy on that metric tonight then it could well be one-way traffic.

Van Gerwen is also winning almost a quarter of legs with a 100+ checkout, which, if you think about it, is crazy. He's currently doing it at 13.04% for the whole of 2022 and that's considered very high.

Aspinall may not be averaging close to MVG but his checkout stats are more clinical overall and he's demonstrated that impressive in his last two matches, managing 52% against Martin Lukeman and 56% against a wasteful Gerwyn Price, who was punished for all his mistakes. Will he get enough tonight?


1920: So how did both players reach the World Grand Prix final? Let's start with Nathan Aspinall...

After coming through a poor opener against an equally sloppy Michael Smith, the Asp had to survive four match darts against Danny Noppert to squeeze through as the underdog once again. He came back from 2-0 down in sets and then 2-0 down in the deciding set as his fighting spirit was rewarded once again.

Aspinall then came through a hard-fought contest with Martin Lukeman 3-2 despite averaging 10 points more than his opponent with 90, once again backing up his own words that he never wins easily and never loses easily.

Bizarrely his semi-final with Gerwyn Price turned out to be his 'easiest' win as he punished the top seed for missing 29 of his 41 attempts at doubles with his highly clinical finishing.

As for Michael van Gerwen's route...

  • R1: 2-0 v Gary Anderson
    Average: 89.43
    180s: 3
    100+ Checkouts: 106
    Checkout %: 25% (6/24)
    Double In %: 45% (8/13)
  • R2: 3-2 v Stephen Bunting
    Average: 94.35
    180s: 6
    100+ Checkouts: 150, 141
    Checkout %: 36% (13/36)
    Double In %: 40% (20/41)
  • QF: 3-1 v Chris Dobey
    Average: 99.33
    180s: 3
    100+ Checkouts: 124, 118, 109, 105, 104
    Checkout %: 60% (11/19)
    Double In %: 64% (18/28)
  • QF: 4-0 v Peter Wright
    Average: 91.64
    180s: 1
    100+ Checkouts: 167, 124
    Checkout %: 63% (12/19)
    Double In %: 44% (13/28)

If it wasn't for a mid-match blip against Stephen Bunting, his journey to the final would have looked like an absolute procession.

Having dropping just a couple of legs against Gary Anderson, MVG looked to be storming into the quarter-finals when winning seven legs on the trot to move 1-0 up against the Bullet in the fourth set, and was averaging over 10 points more at that point.

Set play can create drama out of nowhere and so it proved again, but after surviving the scares of a deciding set, he produced an exhibition of high scoring and ruthless doubling - at both ends of legs - to beat Chris Dobey in a highly-entertaining contest.

He was very impressive again when stepping up against his old rival Peter Wright but sadly Snakebite didn't turn up to create a classic and the 4-0 scoreline was maybe more down to his lack of Aspinall-style spirit.


1910: Right, let's kick things off the head-to-head record between the pair. Although MVG has the upper hand as you'd expect, most of their battles have been close and that's no surprise given Nathan Aspinall's qualities as well as his fighting spirit. He's not afraid of anyone.

He also gave him a real run for his money at this year's World Matchplay quarter-finals when many had expected a wider margin of victory than 16-14, while their previous meeting before that was a classic European Championship semi-final that went to a deciding leg.

Aspinall won't throw in the towel if he finds himself in what seems to be perilous position so I would be surprised to see him nick a couple of sets or three.


1900: Good evening and welcome to our live blog of the Boylesports World Grand Prix final, as Michael van Gerwen bids to win this double-start major for the sixth time in his seventh final and Nathan Aspinall chases his first having never reached this stage before.

MVG is already the second most successful player in the tournament's 25-year history behind Phil Taylor, who lifted this trophy 11 times, but it will have felt like three long years for him since he thrashed Dave Chisnall for his fifth back in 2019.

The Dutchman endured a rocky patch in his otherwise phenomenal career in 2020 and 2021 but he's been firmly re-exerting his authority in the world of darts this year by landing eight titles including the Premier League and World Matchplay, so another major tonight will send out another ominous warning to his big rivals that he's returning to his dominance of old.

He dispensed with one of those arch rivals last night in the shape of Peter Wright, who crumbled to a 4-0 defeat, while the other - Gerwyn Price - was punished for every mistake in his semi-final by Aspinall.

It'll take a herculean effort from the Stockport man to spring another surprise tonight - especially if MVG plays like he has been doing this week - but nobody battles harder and he won't give up until the final double has landed.

The final begins at around 1945 BST so between now and then we'll run through the routes to the final, tournament statistics, head-to-head records and some predictions.

Before we get into the present, here is quick look at the previous finals in the tournament history...

World Grand Prix: Past Finals

World Grand Prix Most Titles

  • Phil Taylor - 11
  • Michael van Gerwen - 5
  • James Wade - 2
  • Jonny Clayton - 1
  • Gerwyn Price - 1
  • Daryl Gurney - 1
  • Colin Lloyd - 1
  • Alan Warriner - 1
  • Robert Thornton - 1

Darts: Related content

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