Top Two Set For Final Battle

January 02 2017

THE world's top two players will fittingly contest the William Hill World Darts Championship on Monday evening as reigning champion Gary Anderson and world number one Michael van Gerwen do battle at Alexandra Palace.

A record-breaking World Championship will conclude with the eagerly-awaited clash as Anderson and van Gerwen meet in the sell-out decider - with a £350,000 first prize and the prestigious Sid Waddell Trophy on offer.

Anderson is aiming to become only the third player in history to win three successive World Championship titles, as he bids to emulate Eric Bristow and Phil Taylor by retaining the sport's biggest title.

Anderson has hit more 180s than any other player during this year's World Championship with 49, and has averaged over 100 in four of his five victories so far.

The Scot, seeded second behind Van Gerwen, has also created a new record winning streak at Alexandra Palace by moving to 17 matches unbeaten - surpassing the previous best tally of 15 held by Phil Taylor and Adrian Lewis since the event moved from the Circus Tavern ahead of the 2008 event.

Ironically, Anderson's last World Championship defeat came against van Gerwen during the Dutchman's run to the 2014 title, but after overcoming Peter Wright 6-3 with a superb semi-final display the 46-year-old is in confident mood.

"It would be an astonishing achievement," said Anderson. "I'm still going and I don't want to give the title up. "I'm very proud to have won it twice and I feel comfy up here.

"The 180s are coming back, the 140s are fine and my doubles against Chizzy and Benito were great. I had a few mistakes [against Peter] but I'm just glad to get over the winning leg.

"Michael this year has been absolutely fantastic. If somebody deserves it it's going to be Michael, but unfortunately I'm still going and I don't want to give it up."


Van Gerwen, meanwhile, created a new tournament record average with his 114.05 mean during his incredible 6-2 last four triumph against Raymond van Barneveld on Sunday, with the 2007 champion setting a record losing average in the event with 109.34.

The Dutchman will be appearing in his third World Championship final, having lost out to Taylor in the 2013 event before capturing the Sid Waddell Trophy a year later when he saw off Wright in the decider.

"I've still got empty hands; a final is nice but it doesn't say anything - you want to win this," said van Gerwen.

"Raymond played absolutely phenomenal [in the semi-final] and he put me to a level that I had to play this well, and I think I played phenomenal. I know what I can do and if you do the right things at the right moments you can hold this trophy.

"Gary is a good player and I think for everyone this is a final to watch. I feel great, Gary is playing phenomenal in this tournament so it's going to be a fantastic final.

"We've got a lot of respect, we know exactly what to do against each other and what to expect."


The World Championship has also seen a new record of 666 maximum 180s landed so far, surpassing last year's total of 654 with the final still to be played.

Dave Chisnall also equalled Van Barneveld's world record 21 maximums in a match during his classic quarter-final with Anderson, ten years after the Dutchman's amazing haul in the 2007 final.

The final will see van Gerwen the 3/10 odds-on favourite with sponsors William Hill to claim his second World Championship, with Anderson the 11/4 outsider.

For the latest betting odds, see www.williamhill.com.

Pre-Final Stats
Michael van Gerwen (Seed 1)

Round

Result

Average

180s

Finishing %

High C/O

R1

3-0 v Viljanen

103.34

5

9/20 – 45%

118

R2

4-2 v Reyes

105.24

11

14/38 – 37%

164

R3

4-1 v D Webster

104.44

8

14/37 – 38%

170

QF

5-1 v Gurney

103.08

7

17/41 – 41%

170

SF

6-2 v van Barneveld

114.05

15

19/37 – 51%

124

Total

22-6 in sets

106.68

46

73/173 – 42%

170


Gary Anderson (Seed 2)

Round

Result

Average

180s

Finishing %

High C/O

R1

3-0 v Frost

96.16

5

9/24 – 38%

116

R2

4-0 v Gilding

102.58

6

12/28 – 43%

134

R3

4-2 v van de Pas

107.68

11

14/24 – 58%

96

QF

5-3 v Chisnall

105.90

12

18/41 – 44%

124

SF

6-3 v Wright

103.45

15

23/65 – 35%

157

Total

22-8 in sets

104.10

49

76/182 – 42%

157

 

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