World Series of Darts Finals 2016: MVG denies Snakebite

Michael van Gerwen won his 23rd tournament of a remarkable season as he defeated Peter Wright 11-9 to defend his title at the World Series of Darts Finals in Glasgow.

The world number one, who beat Wright 11-10 in last year's final, had been in his usual ruthless form all day having thrashed Simon Whitlock 10-0 in the quarter-finals before storming past Dave Chisnall 11-3 in the last four.

And although Wright's challenge was far more competitive as he chased a maiden televised title of his own in front of his raucous home supporters at the Braehead Arena, it was van Gerwen who just about held his nerve after missing eight match darts in a thrilling finale to collect yet another trophy and a winners' cheque of £30,000.

It looked as though the Dutchman had the title sealed when he moved into a 10-6 lead but at 10-7 he missed two darts for victory which allowed Wright back in before his gutsy opponent moved to within one leg.

Van Gerwen missed a further six darts at a double in leg 20 but finally got the job done on double two after Wright missed five chances of his own to force a decider for the second year in a row.

Victory extends MVG's winning run over Wright to 15 successive matches dating back to June 2015 and increases his overall head-to-head record to 41 wins, eight defeats and a draw while he's also triumphed in all nine of their previous meetings in tournament finals.

More importantly for van Gerwen, it was his third successive televised tournament win following his success in the World Grand Prix and European Championship last month while it also backed up the trophies he won in Shanghai and Perth on the World Series tour earlier this year.

Van Gerwen told "This is another great win for me. I had to work really hard - Peter played really well but I'm really glad I won the game.

"I compete in tournaments to win and if you do win then you get great confidence, and I'm feeling good. I played okay this weekend and it's a good tournament in preparation for next week at the Grand Slam of Darts.

"Things are going well for me, I'm winning most of the tournaments and I'm a happy man."

Despite holding a clear mental advantage heading into the final, MVG wasn't at his best during the early stages and at 4-4 it looked as though Wright was in the right frame of mind to pull off another shock having earlier stunned Phil Taylor 11-10 in the semi-finals.

But the match turned in the Dutchman's favour in the next leg as finished from 130 on the bull to break again before taking out 103 to silence the crowd as he opened up a 6-4 lead.

He failed to take out 87 for a fourth successive leg, which allowed Wright to take out double tops and cut the deficit to just one.

But after holding his throw in the next, he broke Wright with an 86 checkout to move three legs ahead at 8-5 as the finishing line approached quickly for van Gerwen.

The players exchanged breaks of throw in the next two leg before an MVG hold put him 10-6 up - which is when the Wright fightback in vain began. 

Wright, who picked up £15,000 as runner-up, was left to rue defeat in a seventh televised final as he again lost out to van Gerwen.

"When you come home to Scotland, I try and play well for the fans and I think I do," said the world number five. "The crowd got me through in the semi-final to play against a great champion in Michael van Gerwen.

"I've found the right dart now and I'm sticking with it, and I'll get back on the practice board. Many people out there believe that when I win my first TV title I'm going to win lots after that, and I believe that too."

Among van Gerwen's 23 tournament successes have been major titles at the UK Open, World Matchplay, World Grand Prix and European Championship while he was also crowned Premier League champion this year.

With the Grand Slam of Darts and the Players Championship Finals still to come ahead of the 2017 World Championship, it would take a brave punter to back against him winning them all.

The £155,000 World Series of Darts Finals followed the year's six international events in Dubai, Auckland, Shanghai, Tokyo, Sydney and Perth as part of the sport's global expansion.

Semi-final round-up

Michael van Gerwen produced yet another ruthless display to thrash Dave Chisnall 11-3 to book his place in the final of the World Series of Darts Finals in Glasgow.

The world number one will now face Peter Wright in a repeat of the 2015 final, which he won 11-10, after the Scotsman came back from the brink of defeat to stun Phil Taylor in a thrilling last-leg decider at the Braehead Arena.

Wright has never won a televised title but with a raucous Glasgow crowd firmly on his side, he now has another great chance after turning round a 10-8 deficit to punish Taylor for missing seven match darts - although the Power was far from impressed with booing from some fans.

The Scotsman, who hit 13 maximums and averaged just over 105, was just about in control during the first half of the match and although Taylor found a 139 checkout to level matters at 6-6, Wright promptly got his nose back in front with a superb 13-darter before taking the next to edge closer to victory.

After Taylor bounced back to level up once again at 8-8, pressure appeared to get to the home favourite when he missed four darts at a double and that allowed Taylor to go ahead for the first time on the match before making it four legs on the spin as he moved one away from victory.

But this time it was the Stoke thrower who fluffed his lines, missing five match darts in the next leg before missing a another in the next as Wright forced a dramatic decider.

Taylor, who ended the match with an average over 107, yet again had a dart to win but he wired the bull giving Wright a shot at tops, which he took.

Van Gerwen, who had earlier whitewashed Simon Whitlock 10-0 in the quarter-finals, carried his ruthless form into the last four.

Van Gerwen made it 14 successive legs in the day when racing into a 4-0 lead before Chisnall finally got on the board although this failed to spark a comeback as Chizzy tumbled to an 11th straight defeat to the Dutchman.

MVG, who produced a superb 156 finish to go 7-1 up, finished with an average of over 108 and hit 11 doubles from just 16 attempts as he moved one win away from defending his title.

Van Gerwen has now won 32 semi-finals this year and hasn't lost a televised last-four clash since losing to James Wade in Perth way back in June 2015.

"I know Dave is a good player but I was too good there," said van Gerwen. "I'm playing really well and now I have to get ready for the final."

Quarter-Final round-up

Michael van Gerwen thrashed Simon Whitlock 10-0 to reach the last four of the World Series of Darts Finals as Phil Taylor, Dave Chisnall and Peter Wright also progressed.

The rampant world number one is bidding to win his 23rd tournament of a stunning season and having avoided a real scare to get past Gerwyn Price 6-5 in Saturday night's second round, he was back to his best against the Australian.

Van Gerwen hit five maximums and averaged 109.71 as he ran out 10-0 winner in just 17 minutes at the Braehead Arena in Glasgow.

Whitlock, who had a dart to beat MVG in the second round of last week's European Championship, only had one shot at a double in the match as he failed to give the Dutchman a test.

Van Gerwen will now meet Dave Chisnall in the semi-finals after Chizzy had earlier came from 6-3 down to beat Adrian Lewis 10-6 in the opening quarter-final.

Neither player looked in great form during the first half of the match but crucially Chisnall took the last leg before the second interval to leave him trailing 6-4.

He then returned to the stage much improved and won the remaining six legs of the match, including checkouts of 129 and 110.

Chizzy averaged 107 in the last seven legs of the match to finish with a 100.86 match average.

Phil Taylor cruised into the semi-finals with a comfortable 10-3 victory over Benito van de Pas, averaging 103.85.

The Power will meet Peter Wright, who battled past Gary Anderson's conqueror Joe Cullen 10-7.

World Series of Darts Finals: Results

Saturday November 5
Afternoon Session (12.45pm-5pm)
First Round(Best of 11 legs)
Max Hopp 6-5 Cristo Reyes
Benito van de Pas 6-3 Michael Smith
Jelle Klaasen 5-6 Kim Huybrechts
Brendan Dolan 5-6 Simon Whitlock
Mensur Suljovic 6-0 Robert Thornton
Joe Murnan 5-6 Joe Cullen
Gerwyn Price 6-3 Steve Beaton
Daryl Gurney 6-3 Josh Payne

Evening Session (7pm-11pm)
Second Round (Best of 11 legs)
Adrian Lewis (5) 6-3 Max Hopp
James Wade (6) 5-6 Benito van de Pas
Dave Chisnall (4) 6-4 Kim Huybrechts
Raymond van Barneveld (8) 2-6 Simon Whitlock
Phil Taylor (3) 6-3 Mensur Suljovic
Gary Anderson (2) 5-6 Joe Cullen
Michael van Gerwen (1) 6-5 Gerwyn Price
Peter Wright (7) 6-3 Daryl Gurney

Sunday November 6
Afternoon Session (12.45pm-5pm)
Quarter-Finals (Best of 19 legs)
Adrian Lewis 6-10 Dave Chisnall
Michael van Gerwen 10-0 Simon Whitlock
Benito van de Pas 3-10 Phil Taylor
Joe Cullen 7-10 Peter Wright

Evening Session (7pm-11pm)
Semi-Finals (Best of 21 legs)
Michael van Gerwen 11-3 Dave Chisnall
Peter Wright 11-10 Phil Taylor

Final (Best of 21 legs)
Michael Van Gerwen 11-9 Peter Wright

World Series of Darts 2016 Results

Dubai Darts Masters - May 26-27 (Winner: Gary Anderson

Auckland Darts Masters - June 17-19 (Winner: Gary Anderson

Shanghai Darts Masters - June 25-26 (Winner: Michael van Gerwen

Tokyo Darts Masters - July 6-7 (Winner: Gary Anderson

Sydney Darts Masters - August 18-20 (Winner: Phil Taylor

Perth Darts Masters - August 25-27 (Winner: Michael van Gerwen

World Series of Darts Finals - November 5-6 (Winner: Michael van Gerwen

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