Peter Wright clinched his third European Tour title of the year with an astonishing whitewash victory over world number one Michael van Gerwen at the European Darts Grand Prix at the Glaspalast in Sindelfingen on Sunday evening.
Van Gerwen landed five maximums and averaged 99.56 in the final, but he was condemned to his first ever whitewash defeat on the European Tour against a merciless Wright. The UK Open champion averaged 104.86 and converted 75% of his attempts at double to record one of the most memorable wins of his career.
Snakebite made a blistering start to the final; following up his first maximum with an 11-dart break of throw on D16. Wright then doubled his tally via the same target after Van Gerwen failed to take out 110, before a dramatic third leg ensued.
Van Gerwen landed successive maximums in the third leg as he attempted to open his account, but he was punished for two missed darts at D16 as Wright took out a spectacular 161 outshot for a 12-dart break of throw and a 3-0 cushion.
The procession continued for Snakebite as he pegged D10 for his fourth straight leg, before Van Gerwen endured further frustration. The world champion fired in his fourth maximum but wired tops for a 118 kill, which enabled Wright to move to within a leg of victory with a 14-darter on D8.
Van Gerwen was desperate to avoid the indignity of a whitewash as he landed a maximum for the fifth leg in succession, but Wright responded with a superb visit of 170. The Dutchman then wired D11 for a 124 outshot, as Wright returned to dispatch D8 for another 14-darter and an incredible whitewash victory.
Wright was in clinical mood throughout the day, as he went on to secure his seventh ranking title of 2017. The world number three began proceedings by averaging 100.38 to defeat Daryl Gurney 6-4, before easing past Jan Dekker in the last eight, after the Dutchman had defeated Kim Huybrechts to reach his first European Tour quarter-final.
In the last four, Wright faced Jelle Klaasen, who reached the semi-finals for the fourth European Tour event in succession. However, ‘The Cobra’ was denied the chance to appear in his second Euro Tour final of 2017, as Wright sealed a fine 6-3 victory with a 99.42 average, including a classy 12-dart finish in the final leg of the match.
Van Gerwen performed superbly to reach his third European Tour final of the year, dropping just three legs in his opening two matches on Sunday. He followed up a convincing 6-2 win over Finland’s European Tour debutant Ulf Ceder with a demolition over his fellow Dutchman Benito van de Pas; where he averaged 104.05.
In the semi-finals, MvG faced Dave Chisnall, who had dumped out Adrian Lewis and Rob Cross earlier in the day to reach his first European Tour semi-final of the year. Nevertheless, he was unable to halt his winless streak against Van Gerwen.
The St Helen’s star recovered from 4-2 down to lead ‘The Green Machine’ 5-4, but Van Gerwen held his nerve to close out a gripping deciding-leg win with a brilliant 105.85 average. However, for the second time on the European Tour this year, the world number one was beaten in the final by an irrepressible Peter Wright.
Photo Credit: Lawrence Lustig/PDC
HappyBet European Darts Grand Prix
May 5-7, Glaspalast, Sindelfingen, Germany
Sunday May 7
Afternoon Session (1pm-5pm local time, 12pm-4pm BST)
Joe Cullen 6-5 Mensur Suljovic
Jelle Klaasen 6-1 Mark Webster
Jan Dekker 6-4 Kim Huybrechts
Peter Wright 6-4 Daryl Gurney
Rob Cross 6-1 Steve West
Dave Chisnall 6-3 Adrian Lewis
Benito van de Pas 6-2 Gerwyn Price
Michael van Gerwen 6-2 Ulf Ceder
Evening Session (7pm-11pm local time, 6pm-10pm BST)
Jelle Klaasen 6-5 Joe Cullen
Peter Wright 6-2 Jan Dekker
Dave Chisnall 6-3 Rob Cross
Michael van Gerwen 6-1 Benito van de Pas
Peter Wright 6-3 Jelle Klaasen
Michael van Gerwen 6-5 Dave Chisnall
Peter Wright 6-0 Michael van Gerwen