Michael van Gerwen recorded the highest ever televised average in the history of professional darts in his 7-1 demolition of Michael Smith in week four of the 2016 Premier League at the GE Oil and Gas Arena in Aberdeen on Thursday evening.
Van Gerwen averaged 123.40, yet he missed three clear darts at D18 for a 7-0 whitewash, which would have seen him finish with a stratospheric average of 136! It was an absolutely remarkable display from start-to-finish, and it’s the first time that any player has averaged over 120 in the history of televised darts.
‘The Green Machine’ broke Phil Taylor’s 118.66 set in 2010, when ‘The Power’ whitewashed Kevin Painter 9-0 in the UK Open fourth round. The world number one only dipped below the 130 average in the final leg of the contest, and at one stage, he was set to break Kyle Anderson’s 134.84 average, posted in a Players Championship event last year.
MvG kicked off proceedings with a brilliant 11-darter to win the opening leg, before extending his lead in the second after posting a timely maximum and taking out 60 for a 12-dart leg. The pair traded maximums in a high-quality third leg and despite a late maximum from Smith, the Dutchman surged 3-0 ahead with another 11-darter.
‘Bully-Boy’ was visibly stunned by this extraordinary performance from van Gerwen, and the 26-year-old Dutchman won his fourth straight leg courtesy of an incredible 132 (Bull,Bull, D16) checkout, for a 12-dart break.
The only thing missing from this breath-taking performance was a 9-darter, and van Gerwen very nearly produced this feat in the fifth leg. Michael posted back-to-back maximums and hit the seventh T20 of the combination, but his dart at T19 agonisingly clipped the top wire.
Nevertheless, ‘The Green Machine’ returned to seal a 5-0 lead with a brilliant 10-darter culminating on D16. Van Gerwen then repeated these heroics just moments later, posting another maximum and leaving D18 after 9 darts. He continued his flawless finishing by pinning the double for consecutive 10-darters, and his average exceeded the 137 mark.
Van Gerwen completely monopolised the seventh leg and appeared destined to clinch the world-record with a whitewash, but to the disbelief of the Aberdeen crowd, he missed three darts at D18 and Smith registered his first leg of the contest courtesy of a terrific 116 checkout.
However, this simply delayed the inevitable, as van Gerwen produced a fine leg of darts on Smith’s throw, leaving 50 after just 12 darts, and despite missing a couple of shots, the world number one confirmed his world-record average by posting D16 in 16-darts.
It was a truly majestic performance from the best darts player on the planet at present. Van Gerwen boasted 58% on the doubles and he posted 24 scores of 100 or more, including ten 140’s as well as four maximums.
Six of MvG’s winning legs were completed in twelve darts or less and this will quite simply go down as the greatest performance in televised darting history! Congratulations Michael van Gerwen! Absolutely stunning!