Gerwyn Price has apologised to Peter Wright having previously accused the Scot of being ‘out of order’ in a tempestuous semi-final clash at the PDC World Championship on Monday evening.
Wright claimed a hard-fought 6-3 win over ‘The Iceman’ to secure a place in his second World Championship final and victory over world No 1 Michael van Gerwen on New Year’s Day would catapult ‘Snakebite’ above Price to 2nd on the PDC Order of Merit.
Following his quarter-final victory over Glen Durrant, Price had jokingly claimed that Wright ‘would be lucky to get a set’ and following his semi-final success, the colourful Scot revealed that the pair had been continuing the mind-games in the practice room.
“Before the match me and Gezzy were winding each other up. He said he was going to win the first two sets and I would change darts, I like him but I don’t appreciate what he did. He wanted me to concentrate and I did, there you go, you lost,” Wright snarled.
Wright drew first blood and after snatching the opening set, he appeared to jokingly approach Price and tap him on the arm as they departed the stage, although this visibly rattled the Welshman, who responded by celebrating in exuberant fashion right in front of Wright after winning the second set.
The pair did not shake hands after the match and Price received the brunt of the criticism on social media, despite the fact that the decision appeared to be a mutual one.
Having left the Alexandra Palace without speaking to the media, the 34-year-old posted on social media in the early hours of Tuesday morning, claiming: “It’s not a rule that you have to shake hands before, after or during a game.”
“Banter is acceptable but not when players are fully focused trying to do a job, having just bombed the first set. I was upset with what Peter did and think it was out of order considering the circumstances,” he added.
Nevertheless, the Grand Slam champion returned to social media on Tuesday morning and issued an apology to Wright after admitting that he’d had time to reflect on his behaviour.
“I’ve had time to reflect on last night’s game. I’ve been in this position before in games but never in a World Championship semi-final. I overreacted to what Peter did after set one. I apologise to everyone who thinks I’ve done wrong and yeah maybe I was a bit over the top.”
“It’s been a tough year for me and to come out at the end of it playing as well as I have, I should be really proud. I have personally apologised to Peter for my reactions. I wish Peter and Michael all the best in the final tomorrow night.”
Price then shared a screenshot on Twitter of a WhatsApp exchange between himself and the Scot, where he apologised to the 49-year-old and added that he hoped the incident would not impact upon their friendship, and Wright also apologised to his rival for his actions at the end of the opening set.
Wright defeated ‘The Iceman’ in the 2017 UK Open final, only for Price to avenge that defeat with an emphatic win over ‘Snakebite’ in last month’s Grand Slam finale. However, the pair are close friends away from the oche and it appears that Monday’s controversy won’t detract from that.
Photo Credit: Alex Davidson/Getty Images