Dutch Darts Championship: Ian White claims first European Tour title after beating Ricky Evans in final

Ian White celebrates his victory at the Dutch Darts Championship (Picture: Kelly Deckers/PDC Europe)
Ian White celebrates his victory at the Dutch Darts Championship (Picture: Kelly Deckers/PDC Europe)

Ian White won his first PDC European Tour title after beating surprise package Ricky Evans 8-5 in the Dutch Darts Championship final.

Six years to the day since his previous European Tour final, 'Diamond' followed up his superb triumph over Peter Wright in the last four to see off Evans at the MECC in Maastricht and scoop the top prize of £25,000.

The 48-year-old from Stoke averaged just 89 in what was a rather nervy final - nine less than he managed against Snakebite - but that didn't matter as he punished Evans for his 13 missed doubles from 18 attempts.

White, who was playing in his 63nd European Tour event, has now won 10 PDC titles in total but this is his first on the 'stage' having scooped nine Players Championship floor tournaments, including two this season.

"It’s been a long time coming, I'm getting older so it's just magical to finally win one," said a tearful White.

"I was so pleased to see that double top go in to get me over the winning line because I got a bit nervy towards the end. Now I've won one hopefully there will be a few more to come - it's just a magnificent feeling to win a title on stage at last.

"I'm playing well and enjoying the game and I want to start going far in TV events and maybe win one but right now I'm going to enjoy this moment."

White kicked off his charge to the title with a 102.26 average in his 6-4 victory over Arron Monk on Saturday before reaching the quarter-finals thanks to a convincing 6-2 defeat of Mervyn King.

The Players Championship Order of Merit number one got the better of fellow-Stoke thrower Adrian Lewis in the quarter-finals and then edged past Wright to reach the final.

Both players made a strong start to the final with White getting off the mark with a 14-dart hold of throw, only for Evans to hit back with a 13-darter.

The first break of the match went to Evans as the Northamptonshire man went 2-1 up, but White hit straight back with an 11-darter to level at 2-2.

The players exchanged holds of throw to make it 3-3 before White took out 96 to hold and followed it up with another 14-dart leg to open up a two-leg advantage for the first time.

Evans found double 16 with his last dart to break throw and stay in the tie, only for White to respond in kind and then hold to go within a leg of victory after both players ended up on double one.

There was no double trouble in the next leg for Evans who hit double top at the first attempt to make it 5-7 and then applied pressure in the following leg but White held his nerve, pinning tops for the title.

Despite coming up just short in the PDC final, it was a weekend to treasure for Evans, who became an Internet sensation and Dutch crowd favourite thanks to his 'Baby Shark'-inspired walk-on music.

Evans' impressive run to his first PDC ranking final in almost five years saw the Kettering thrower record impressive victories over Jan Dekker, Steve West, William O'Connor, Joe Cullen and Ritchie Edhouse.

"I'm not normally a person who thinks about nerves but I was very nervous there," Evans admitted.

"I'm chuffed to bits to get to the final and it makes me feel very happy to get this reception from the crowd, they've been very helpful today.

"Hopefully this could be the start of me winning more games on the big stage."

The Dutch weekend was also a memorable one for semi-finalist Edhouse, who ended a run of six European Tour appearances without victory, while O'Connor inflicted world number one Michael van Gerwen's first last 32 exit in Europe for almost three years.

Daily tournament results

Friday September 7
First Round (Best of 11 legs)
Afternoon Session

  • Darren Johnson 6-4 Kevin Munch
  • William O'Connor 6-2 Karel Sedlacek
  • Barrie Bates 6-3 Jelle Klaasen
  • Rowby-John Rodriguez 6-3 Robert Marijanovic
  • Ryan Searle 6-3 Andy Boulton
  • Ricky Evans 6-3 Jan Dekker
  • Darius Labanauskas 6-3 Toni Alcinas
  • Josh Payne 6-3 Dirk van Duijvenbode

Evening Session

  • Wayne Jones 6-2 Jeffrey de Zwaan 
  • Jeffrey de Graaf 6-5 Paul Nicholson
  • Ritchie Edhouse 6-4 Dawson Murschell
  • Kevin Painter 6-5 Vincent van der Voort
  • Ross Smith 6-2 Rusty-Jake Rodriguez
  • Arron Monk 6-3 Robert Thornton
  • Kyle Anderson 6-0 Christian Bunse
  • Cristo Reyes 6-4 James Wilson

CLICK HERE FOR REPORT AND REACTION

Saturday September 8
Second Round (Best of 11 legs)
Afternoon Session

  • Steve West 5-6 Ricky Evans
  • Mervyn King 6-2 Darius Labanauskas
  • Dave Chisnall 6-3 Rowby-John Rodriguez
  • Joe Cullen 6-4 Barrie Bates
  • Darren Webster 3-6 Josh Payne
  • Gerwyn Price 5-6 Darren Johnson
  • Stephen Bunting 3-6 Jeffrey de Graaf
  • Adrian Lewis 6-1 Wayne Jones

Evening Session

  • Ross Smith 6-5 Max Hopp
  • Ian White 6-4 Arron Monk
  • Ritchie Edhouse 6-4 James Wade
  • Daryl Gurney 6-5 Ryan Searle
  • Peter Wright 6-2 Kevin Painter
  • William O'Connor 6-1 Michael van Gerwen
  • Jonny Clayton 3-6 Kyle Anderson
  • Simon Whitlock 6-1 Cristo Reyes

CLICK HERE FOR REPORT AND REACTION

Sunday September 9
Afternoon Session
Third Round (Best of 11 legs)

  • Ricky Evans 6-2 William O'Connor
  • Joe Cullen 6-4 Daryl Gurney
  • Ritchie Edhouse 6-2 Ross Smith
  • Kyle Anderson 6-1 Jeffrey de Graaf
  • Peter Wright 6-1 Dave Chisnall
  • Simon Whitlock 6-4 Darren Johnson
  • Adrian Lewis 6-5 Josh Payne
  • Ian White 6-2 Mervyn King

Evening Session
Quarter-Finals (Best of 11 legs)

  • Ricky Evans 6-5 Joe Cullen
  • Ritchie Edhouse 6-4 Kyle Anderson
  • Peter Wright 6-4 Simon Whitlock
  • Ian White 6-1 Adrian Lewis

Semi-Finals (Best of 13 legs)

  • Ricky Evans 7-5 Ritchie Edhouse
  • Ian White 7-4 Peter Wright

Final (Best of 15 legs)

  • Ricky Evans 5-8 Ian White

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