Gerwyn Price has warned his rivals that he’s yet to reach his peak, after producing a trio of stunning displays to celebrate Night 11 success in the Cazoo Premier League on Thursday.
Price continued his blistering form at the Brighton Centre to become the first player to secure four nightly victories in this year’s tournament, and he did so in emphatic style.
The Welshman registered three ton-topping averages to claim the spoils on the South Coast, defeating Michael Smith 6-3 in Thursday’s final to cement his place in the Play-Off positions.
The 38-year-old opened proceedings with a sensational 115.97 average in his 6-2 victory over Chris Dobey - the ninth-highest average in Premier League history and the highest since 2017.
The former World Champion then came through a deciding-leg thriller against Michael van Gerwen, averaging 108 and surviving a match dart to prevail in a contest that featured 14 maximums.
“It was a great night for me, I thought I played really well, especially in the first two games," reflected Price, who averaged 100.08 to defeat Smith in the evening's showpiece.
“I go home with another five league points and £10,000 winner's prize so it's a great feeling to win again.
“I’m in the best position and the best form I’ve probably ever been in during the Premier League, so things are looking good.
“I think there's a lot more to come from me. I believe I'm still a novice in this game. Over the next two or three years I will improve and be a lot more consistent.”
Price becomes the first player in this year’s Premier League to post three successive ton-plus averages en route to a nightly victory, reaffirming his status as the form man in world darts.
His semi-final victory over Van Gerwen marked his fifth straight win over the reigning Premier League champion, who missed double 12 for a nine-darter in the penultimate leg of the tie.
Price has reduced the Dutchman’s lead at the Premier League summit to just two points, and admits he’s brimming with confidence following his exploits in Brighton.
“I'm probably playing the best I ever have on a TV stage,” continued the former World Cup winner.
“I have played to this standard before in ProTour events and in practice, but this is the place to do it, with the eyes of the world on you.
“I think [his form] it is down to a combination of things. I have taken on a gluten-free diet which makes me feel better within myself.
“Maybe it’s psychological but I’m feeling better, I have more energy and obviously winning breeds confidence, so hopefully I keep on winning!”
The Welshman’s focus now turns to Night 12 in Rotterdam next Thursday, which will see him renew his rivalry with World Champion Smith in a mouth-watering quarter-final showdown.
Price leads fifth-placed Nathan Aspinall by 12 points with five nights of league action remaining, as he bids to confirm Play-Off qualification for the first time in his Premier League career.
However, the three-time Grand Slam champion insists complacency will not be a factor, as he aims to dazzle on Dutch soil.
“I still feel like I need a couple more points, so the job isn’t done yet,” Price insisted.
“There’s five weeks to go and I’m fully focused. I'm looking forward to Rotterdam next week now.
“I'll be wearing a special orange shirt which hopefully will go down well with the Dutch fans.
“I need to keep playing well and make sure I get in the Play-Offs for the first time, but I'm also chasing Michael [van Gerwen] for top spot.”
2023 Cazoo Premier League
Night 12 - Thursday April 20
Chris Dobey v Jonny Clayton
Michael Smith v Gerwyn Price
Dimitri Van den Bergh v Peter Wright
Michael van Gerwen v Nathan Aspinall
All matches best of 11 legs