MICHAEL VAN GERWEN claimed his eighth European Tour title of the year as he defeated James Wade 8-3 in the final of the European Darts Trophy in Gottingen on Sunday.
Van Gerwen was at his phenomenal best throughout the weekend at the Lokhalle, averaging over 100 in every match as he continued his dominance on the European Tour in 2018.
The final of the £135,000 tournament saw a replay of the European Darts Grand Prix final in May, which Van Gerwen also won 8-3, and the Dutchman proved too strong once again as he clinched the £25,000 top prize.
“I think I played a phenomenal tournament, you can only dream about a performance like this,” said Van Gerwen, who now has 28 European Tour titles to his name.
“Now I can look back on a good European Tour season for me, but I have to keep my concentration for the important tournaments coming up.
“I never get bored of winning, I want to keep going until I get to 50 European Tour titles at least!”
Van Gerwen was at his unstoppable best from the start of the weekend, defeating fellow-Dutchman Vincent van der Voort 6-2 on Saturday evening before a 106.5 average saw him power past Stephen Bunting 6-4 into the quarter-finals.
There, he repeated his 106.5 average to see off Daryl Gurney 6-2 and followed it up with a 7-2 rout of Michael Smith to reach his 33rd European Tour final.
The showpiece of the Gottingen event began brightly for two-time European Tour event winner Wade, who landed a 95 finish to take an early 2-1 advantage.
However, back-to-back 12-dart finishes from Van Gerwen saw him take a lead which he never relinquished, with a showpiece bullseye-19-bullseye finish to take out 119 which put him 4-2 up.
After the two-time World Champion missed double top for a 160, Wade tidied up 82 to stay in the contest at 4-3, but that was as good as it got for Wade as Van Gerwen mercilessly fired off the next four legs in emphatic style to lift the European Darts Trophy for a third successive year.
Wade’s run to his fourth PDC ranking final of the year saw him record wins over Toni Alcinas, Darren Webster, Rob Cross and Richard North.
“I go into every tournament expecting to do well, so I’m not surprised I made the final,” said Wade.
“I can’t believe I played so poorly in the final but sometimes that happens, I’m sure I will be able to take the positives from this weekend over the next few days.”
The European Darts Trophy was the 13th and final European Tour event of 2018, with the leading 32 players from the European Tour Order of Merit qualifying for the European Championship in Dortmund, which will take place from October 25-28.
2018 European Darts Trophy (ET13)
Friday October 12
Luke Humphries 6-4 Keegan Brown
Matthew Edgar 6-3 Jeffrey de Graaf
Mickey Mansell 6-2 George Killington
John Henderson 6-5 Mark Wilson
Gabriel Clemens 6-3 Brendan Dolan
Marko Kantele 6-3 Robert Marijanovic
Ryan Joyce 6-1 Jermaine Wattimena
Krzysztof Ratajski 6-5 Steve West
Richard North 6-3 Christian Bunse
Ricky Evans 6-1 Andrew Gilding
Martin Schindler 6-3 Luke Woodhouse
Vincent van der Voort 6-3 Simon Stevenson
Jelle Klaasen 6-4 Maik Langendorf
Steve Beaton 6-5 Kim Huybrechts
Jeffrey de Zwaan 6-3 Steffen Siepmann
Toni Alcinas 6-5 Danny Noppert
Saturday October 13
Matthew Edgar 6-5 Joe Cullen
Michael Smith 6-1 Marko Kantele
Dave Chisnall 6-5 Ryan Joyce
Stephen Bunting 6-2 Mickey Mansell
Daryl Gurney 6-3 Luke Humphries
Richard North 6-4 Simon Whitlock
John Henderson 6-4 Ian White
Jonny Clayton 6-2 Gabriel Clemens
Martin Schindler 6-0 Mervyn King
Steve Beaton 6-5 Gerwyn Price
Darren Webster 6-3 Ricky Evans
Michael van Gerwen 6-2 Vincent van der Voort
Jelle Klaasen 6-3 Peter Wright
James Wade 6-4 Toni Alcinas
Max Hopp 6-5 Krzysztof Ratajski
Rob Cross 6-4 Jeffrey de Zwaan
Sunday October 14
Michael van Gerwen 6-4 Stephen Bunting
Daryl Gurney 6-3 Matthew Edgar
Michael Smith 6-0 Steve Beaton
Dave Chisnall 6-0 John Henderson
Jelle Klaasen 6-5 Martin Schindler
Richard North 6-1 Jonny Clayton
James Wade 6-3 Darren Webster
Rob Cross 6-5 Max Hopp
Michael van Gerwen 6-2 Daryl Gurney
Michael Smith 6-2 Dave Chisnall
Richard North 6-3 Jelle Klaasen
James Wade 6-3 Rob Cross
Michael van Gerwen 7-2 Michael Smith
James Wade 7-4 Richard North
Michael van Gerwen 8-3 James Wade