DAVE CHISNALL believes his improved mental strength saw him end his 18-month wait for a PDC title at Players Championship 2 on Sunday.
Chisnall defeated PDC newcomer Glen Durrant 8-7 in a dramatic final in Wigan to claim his 13th PDC crown on a day which also saw the St Helens star hit a nine-darter against Rowby-John Rodriguez in round three.
The five-time televised finalist defeated Rob Cross and James Wade on his way to a thrilling final, which saw Durrant land a 170 finish after Chisnall missed four darts for the match.
Appearing in his first ProTour final in almost a year, Chisnall came through a tense deciding leg to take the £10,000 top prize and seal a memorable win.
"Last year I wasn't in the best place mentally because I was having some problems at home," said Chisnall, who is now up to 11th on the PDC Order of Merit.
"But since July I've been practicing a lot more and it shows because my doubles aren't letting me down anymore.
"I practice in my shed at home and my wife Michaela is always on at me to make sure I'm in there practicing.
"She often texts me during the day asking if I'm in the shed practicing but this just shows that if you put the work in then the rewards will come.
"This is a great way to start the year, I'm feeling even more confident about my game now so hopefully more titles will follow."
Two-time World Championship quarter-finalist Chisnall began the day with victories over youthful trio Nathan Aspinall, Luke Humphries and Rodriguez to reach the last 16.
There, he saw off former World Champion Cross, before coming back from 5-3 down to defeat James Wade 6-5 in the quarter-finals.
A 7-5 success over Jonny Clayton followed in the semi-finals before victory over Durrant saw Chisnall return to the winners' circle for the first time since August 2017.
"I played well on the day and I think I deserved it because I'm one of those players who never gives up," Chisnall continued.
"Glen is a three-time World Champion so I was glad to get the job done against him, you can't fault him for the way he played and when he took out the 170 I thought I was probably going to lose.
"It's disheartening when you miss match darts but I got myself back together and my last leg was steady, which shows I'm mentally right.
"Of course, you also need a bit of luck to win these tournaments but today I thought I made the most of my chances when I got them and that's what won me the title."
Chisnall was joined by Dutch youngester Geert Nentjes, world number one Michael van Gerwen and Premier League Contender Chris Dobey in hitting nine-darters, setting a new record for perfect legs in a day at a ProTour event.
"I practice a lot with Chris Dobey so when I heard he'd hit a nine-darter I thought 'I'll have a crack myself!'" Chisnall added.
Chisnall will return to ProTour action this weekend for Players Championships 3-4 at Wigan's Robin Park Tennis Centre, with live streaming from two boards simultaneously in the new-look PDCTV-HD.