World number one Michael van Gerwen has claimed that there are only two threats to him at this year’s World Championship, which kicks off at the Alexandra Palace tomorrow evening.
Van Gerwen was discussing his world title prospects on the launch of his official YouTube channel in an interview with Chris Murphy, and the Dutchman believes there are only two players capable of halting his quest for a second World Championship title in January.
MvG, who insists that he expects to win the World Championship this year, claimed : “The biggest threats in the World Championship for me? I think there are two threats only; Gary Anderson and Phil Taylor.
“Peter Wright is a guy who’s in form. He is nearly number two in the world and is doing fantastic. He’s very consistent but he needs to make some steps as well at this World Championships. He needs to show some extra explosion at the right moments in a semi-final or final, because he hasn’t done that yet,” Van Gerwen added.
The 27-year-old from Boxtel has enjoyed staggering success in 2016, having won an unprecedented 25 titles this year. The Dutchman has won every single TV ranking major of the year and the only TV tournament he failed to win was the inaugural Champions League of Darts, where he lost in the final to Phil Taylor.
Van Gerwen reflected with pride at the incredible success he’s enjoyed throughout the last twelve months. “I think it’s been a phenomenal year. This is bigger than I could think of. Last year I won eighteen titles and I thought to myself after the year, if I win eight or nine this year I still have a great year, and now I’ve won 25 tournaments and the year’s not even gone yet.”
‘Mighty Mike’ will be aiming to win his first world title since 2014 at the Ally Pally this year. The world number one defeated Peter Wright 7-4 to win his maiden world crown almost three years ago, but Van Gerwen has seen Gary Anderson secure back-to-back triumphs since then.
Twelve months ago, MvG was beaten in the third-round of the World Championship by his compatriot Raymond van Barneveld in arguably the greatest game ever seen at the Ally Pally. Michael dominated the world of darts last year only to suffer heartbreak in the biggest event of all, and he’s desperate to avoid the same fate this time around.
“What I’ve won this year is amazing, no one can take that away from me; but it’s gone. Those tournaments are finished and it’s now on to the next one. I want to win that one; I’m desperate to win that one and I’m going to do everything within my ability to win that tournament.
“Of course I want to win this World Championship. It’s my main target and I’m ready for it; I feel good. All the pressure will be on my shoulders but who cares? I’m playing with pressure on my shoulders already for four years.”
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