Michael van Gerwen BEATS Michael Smith 7-3 to win his THIRD PDC World Darts title | Other | Sport

Michael van Gerwen BEATS Michael Smith 7-3 to win his THIRD PDC World Darts title | Other | Sport

PDC Darts LIVE: Latest score and updates from Michael van Gerwen vs Michael Smith (Image: GETTY) Michael van Gerwen beats Michael Smith 7-3 in the PDC World Darts Championship final MVG wins £500,000 prize, Smith gets £200,000 cheque for runner-up This is the third time Van Gerwen has won the world title MICHAEL VAN GERWEN


PDC Darts LIVE: Latest score and updates from Michael van Gerwen vs Michael Smith (Image: GETTY)

  • Michael van Gerwen beats Michael Smith 7-3 in the PDC World Darts Championship final
  • MVG wins £500,000 prize, Smith gets £200,000 cheque for runner-up
  • This is the third time Van Gerwen has won the world title

MICHAEL VAN GERWEN BEATS MICHAEL SMITH 7-3

Van Gerwen gives his first interview as a three-time world champion. “It is the best feeling I can have. To win this trophy at the end of the year is phenomenal,” he said.

“It’s the most important thing to me. It’s insane, it means the world to me.

“Three times world champion sounds good but I should have more. I will have more, trust me.

“I have worked for this so long, all the year, and I’ve had some phenomenal games this tournament. I think I need to go on holiday now – it’s well deserved.”

Smith, meanwhile, cuts an emotional figure and even apologises for not playing his best: “I’m sorry I didn’t put on a better show. I’m gutted. I don’t know what to say.”

MVG WINS WORLD CHAMPIONSHIP

MVG back on fire as he storms into a 2-0 lead – he’s a leg away from his third world title.

Match dart goes in the third leg at Double 32 as Smith gets it back to 2-1 but the Dutchman clocks straight back in with a 180, his 14th of the match and No.27 in total.

He lets out a ‘come on’ as he sits on 32 with Smith back on 118. The first misses, the second goes in, and the fireworks go off.

MICHAEL VAN GERWEN IS THE WORLD CHAMPION

SMITH TAKES NINTH SET (3-2 legs, 3-6 sets)

This one isn’t done yet. They are locked a 2-2 in the ninth set but nerves creep in for MVG.

The trebles dessert him and Smith is there to take advantage, missing double 7 for a 122-finish before returning to clean up to take the set.

We’re into set number 10…

Michael van Gerwen is hunting his third PDC World Darts Championship title

Michael van Gerwen is hunting his third PDC World Darts Championship title (Image: GETTY)

MVG TAKES EIGHTH SET (3-2 legs, 6-2 sets)

Oh my days, Smith misses the big daddy checkout of 170 – he hits the outer bull instead of bull – to take it to 5-3. But now it’s MVG’s turn to miss as he squanders a dart at a double to take it himself.

So Smith has 25 left with three darts in hands. He hits 5, then splits double 10. One dart at double 5 to take the set – but it’s gone. THREE darts missed and the set is over.

MVG hits double 8 and his eyes nearly burst out his head as he celebrates. Is that the match?

MVG TAKES SEVENTH SET (3-1 legs, 5-2 sets)

Smith may be rallying but the problem is simple: he’s given the best player on the planet a 4-0 headstart.

There’s now been 18 180s in the match – 9 each – but MVG’s three-dart average of 104 is seven points ahead of Smith’s (97) and that’s the difference.

And in the seventh he’s averaged close to 107 and Smith has no answer this time.

Another ton-plus finish – this time of 112 – and the Dutchman takes the set. He’s two away from his third Sid Waddell trophy.

SMITH TAKES SIXTH SET (3-0 legs, 2-4 sets)

Yes! (See below). “Michael van Gerwen may look composed but I’m telling you he’s not,” says Wayne Mardle.

For Smith has just won the sixth set 3-0 and he’s now playing like the man who blew Nathan Aspinall away in the semis.

Two ton-plus checkouts in the set – and three in a row in the match – and suddenly Michael Smith is a man possessed. Game on.

SMITH TAKES FIFTH SET (3-2 legs, 1-4 sets)

Is that the moment this darts match turns around?

Michael Smith has finished dreadfully but when it matters most he’s come up with a gem.

With the set tied up at 2-2 and MVG waiting over Double 10, Smith takes out 124 to wild celebrations in the crowd.

He blows out his cheeks but he’s finally on the board. Are we about to see mission impossible?

Michael Smith slumps his shoulders in the picture that sums the whole match up

Michael Smith slumps his shoulders in the picture that sums the whole match up (Image: GETTY)

MVG TAKES FOURTH SET (3-2 legs, 4-0 sets)

Smith leads twice in the set – at 1-0 and 2-1 – but MVG comes roaring back to take it into a decider.

But oh dear, oh dear… Smith has just missed FOUR darts at a double to win the set and Van Gerwen takes it on his third attempt.

That was Smith’s big chance and it’s gone begging. You can’t afford to make those mistakes against MVG.

MVG TAKES THIRD SET (3-1 legs, 3-0 sets)

Wil the real Michael Smith please stand up? He averaged 102.3 in set 1, 94.0 in set 2 and is now averaging 76.6 in set 3. He is so much better than this – and the slumped shoulders say it all.

MVG isn’t having to be his near his best right now and he cruises into a two-leg lead (again, for the third time this match).

Smith pegs one back but it’s too little too late as MVG takes out 40 to take the set. A fist pump.

He’s almost halfway there already…

Michael Smith has the crowd behind him but MVG got off to a flyer

Michael Smith has the crowd behind him but MVG got off to a flyer (Image: GETTY)

MVG TAKES SECOND SET (3-1 legs, 2-0 sets)

“Michael van Gerwen looks composed, relaxed and ready for a day at the office,” John Part says on commentary.

And what an office it is. A 129 checkout in the first set, now a 126 in the second leg of the second to go 2-0 up.

The crowd are chanting ‘Michael Smith, Michael Michael Smith’ but their man is up against a freak.

He’s missed 10 darts at a double now and although he gets a leg back, MVG is quick to take out 68 to go two up.

MVG TAKES FIRST SET (3-2 legs, 1-0 sets)

Jeez he’s good, so good. A slow start from MVG, who has the throw in the opening set, and Smith has half an opening. That’s until the Dutchman takes out 129, finishing on the bull, to take the opening leg.

A dart goes begging for a 149 finish in the next leg but MVG still wraps it up after Mighty Mike misses double top to level.

The St Helens man puts that right in the third leg when he breaks MVG’s throw with a 90 finish – 20, 20, bull – then he takes it into a decider. Can he complete three legs on the spin to take the set?

Nope, Van Gerwen eventually gets over the line when he takes out 24. Advantage MVG.

Michael van Gerwen took a one-set lead over Michael Smith in the PDC darts final

Michael van Gerwen took a one-set lead over Michael Smith in the PDC darts final (Image: GETTY)

Gary Anderson: Michael Smith will win, MVG will struggle

8.15pm: Gary Anderson is Michael Smith’s mentor and he is sure his pupil will come out on top.

“I tell you what, he’s very calm tonight. I’m more nervous than him,” he said.

“He’s looking good. This year he’s grown leaps and bounds. I know how good Michael is, he’s absolutely fantastic.

“The boy has turned into a man now. I fancy it for him tonight.

“Michael van Gerwen will struggle to keep up with his scoring.”

Gary Anderson thinks Michael Smith will beat Michael van Gerwen

Gary Anderson thinks Michael Smith will beat Michael van Gerwen (Image: SKY SPORTS)

Smith has huge chance

8.05pm: Sky Sports pundit Wayne Mardle says Michael Smith has every chance of beating MVG tonight – while the man himself thinks it’s his destiny.

And in news that will surely excite his other half, Smith wants the Sid Waddell trophy as the centrepiece at his wedding!

Smith blew match darts to beat Rob Cross last year and his huge scoring power means he has the game to beat anybody.

We’re not long from the off…

The previous meetings

7.35pm: At Smith’s only previous meeting with Van Gerwen in a showpiece final, the Dutchman was in unplayable form at the Premier League play-off last May, winning 11-4 with an immense 112.37 average.

Van Gerwen has averaged 100-plus in his last 18 consecutive appearances on the Ally Pally stage, and with good reason the bookies make him 1-5 on to complete a triple crown.

“I have a phenomenal record against Michael and I’m looking forward to playing him,” said Van Gerwen.

“This means the world to me. I’m working my socks off every week, week after week.

“I do a lot to come to the stage and I’m really glad I’m in the final. The work is not done yet – I have to do more.”

PDC Darts LIVE: Latest score and updates from Michael van Gerwen vs Michael Smith

PDC Darts LIVE: Latest score and updates from Michael van Gerwen vs Michael Smith (Image: GETTY)

Wedding bells are ringing

7.15pm: Smith was in floods of tears after reaching the final after a fine win over Nathan Aspinall.

And he faces another emotional day on Saturday when he marries fiancee Dagmara.

He said: “I never cried when my kids, Junior and Casper, were born. What is wrong with me? Why am I crying? Every time someone says I’m in the final, I tear up.

“All the sacrifices I’ve made are paying off. This year has made everything I’ve done worth it.

“This is my first ranking final and it means a lot. If all the other finals had been ranking, I’d have been higher than I am now.”

PDC Darts LIVE: Latest score and updates from Michael van Gerwen vs Michael Smith

PDC Darts LIVE: Latest score and updates from Michael van Gerwen vs Michael Smith (Image: GETTY)

It’s nearly time…

6.45pm: Above is the scene at the Alexandra Palace an hour and a half before the biggest show in darts.

Michael van Gerwen, already a two-time world champion and a winner of 116 PDC events, meets Michael Smith.

MVG was defeated by Rob Cross in his semi-final last year and is out to make amends while Smith says he is just counting his lucky stars to get this far.

Still, the 28-year-old from St Helens is no mug. He beat Nathan Aspinall in the semis, hitting 17 180s in the process, an individual record in a World Championship semi-final.

Let battle commence (at 8.15pm!).



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