Red hot Price retains in Riesa
Red hot Price retains in Riesa
On Sunday, Gerwyn Price won the Interwetten International Darts Open in Riesa by defeating Michael van Gerwen 8-4 in a thrilling final to win his second straight PDC European Tour championship.
Seven days after winning the European Darts Open, Price celebrated his first ranking victory of 2023, and he kept up his outstanding form to win on a historic weekend at the Sachsenarena.
The Welshman won the £30,000 top prize in the 100th PDC European Tour contest with four ton-topping averages, which he sealed with his fourth straight victory over Van Gerwen.
On Sunday, Price got things started with a thrilling last-leg victory over Mike De Decker of Belgium, averaging over 106 to win in a match that featured 13 maximums.
The 38-year-old kept up his momentum with a valiant win over third seed Rob Cross before defeating Dirk van Duijvenbode in the semifinals, a rematch of last weekend’s championship match, by averaging almost 107.
As a result, they faced off against top seed Van Gerwen in the Sunday championship match, which was interestingly their first encounter in a European Tour final.
Price scored the opening point in thrilling fashion, turning a tops-tops 134 finish into a break throw. He then built a 4-1 lead by punishing a slew of missed doubles by a careless Van Gerwen.
The defending champion increased his advantage to 6-1 after a 12-dart break and a clinical 76 combination, but Van Gerwen fought back with back-to-back legs to keep his slim hopes alive.
However, Price produced a pair of 14-dart holds to win with a 105.6 average and win his eighth European Tour championship, preventing the Dutchman from making any further progress.
“I think I am half-German now!” joked Price, who has won four of the last five editions of the International Darts Open.
“I’ve been getting great support over the last couple of months and it is showing on the board. I know I’m playing well and I’m putting players under pressure.
“Michael wasn’t at his best today. He missed a couple of doubles and those crucial doubles have got to go in if you want to win tournaments.
“Thankfully I’ve been scoring well and those crucial doubles have been going in, because on another day it could have been a different story.
“I am sure it was a great game for the crowd. Michael is a great player and he will come back, so I’m happy to win this one.”
Van Gerwen was bidding to win a record-extending 36th European Tour title – his first at this event – although he was unable to recover from his subdued start against an imperious Price.
Following up a 6-1 victory over Jose de Sousa with a rout of Premier League foe Peter Wright, the Dutch superstar dropped just five legs in his three victories on Sunday.
Van Gerwen later overcame a valiant effort from home favourite Martin Schindler to advance to his first European Tour final of 2023, winning 7-4 after taking a 4-0 lead.
Reflecting on his defeat to 2021 World Champion Price, Van Gerwen admitted: “Gezzy is in good form and when he’s in this form he is going to punish you.
“That’s part of the game and you have to learn from that. It is nice to make the final but for me it’s not enough, it’s as simple as that.
“The crowd are always phenomenal but you want to perform well for yourself and for the fans watching, but today wasn’t my day.
“When you make too many mistakes against a player of Gerwyn’s calibre, you are going to regret it, and that is what happened tonight.”
2023 Interwetten International Darts Open
Sunday April 2
Michael van Gerwen 6-1 Jose de Sousa
Peter Wright 6-4 Alan Soutar
Jonny Clayton 6-2 Dave Chisnall
Martin Schindler 6-3 Nathan Aspinall
Damon Heta 6-3 Niko Springer
Dirk van Duijvenbode 6-5 Danny Noppert
Rob Cross 6-3 Josh Rock
Gerwyn Price 6-5 Mike De Decker
Michael van Gerwen 6-0 Peter Wright
Martin Schindler 6-3 Jonny Clayton
Dirk van Duijvenbode 6-4 Damon Heta
Gerwyn Price 6-4 Rob Cross
Michael van Gerwen 7-4 Martin Schindler
Gerwyn Price 7-2 Dirk van Duijvenbode
Gerwyn Price 8-4 Michael van Gerwen