Hero's Homecoming for Super Saint Smith

Michael Smith (Bernard Platt, St Helens RLFC)

Michael Smith has enjoyed a hero's homecoming in St Helens following his Cazoo World Darts Championship success.

Smith claimed the sport's top prize and also became world number one on Tuesday night with his 7-4 triumph over Michael van Gerwen at Alexandra Palace.

The victory, including his historic nine-darter in a sensational leg where Van Gerwen missed double 12 for perfection himself, has gained global headlines.

Smith has also received a warm welcome back to hometown St Helens since returning from London on Wednesday.

With seemingly no traffic delays in the area, the town's road signs were changed to a message welcoming Smith back home to St Helens.

He also visited his beloved St Helens rugby league club on Thursday, where he paraded the Sid Waddell Trophy on the pitch alongside the club's Betfred Super League, League Leaders' Shield and Women's Super League trophies.

Smith is also the cover star for this week's "St Helens Star" newspaper, which has reported on his progress since he turned professional 15 years ago.