Michael van Gerwen won his 31st European Tour title after beating Ian White 8-3 in the final of the German Darts Open in Saarbrücken on Sunday.
The world number one finished with a tournament average of 101.05 and came through three last-leg deciders and survived five match darts on his way to taking home the £25,000 top prize at the Saarlandhalle.
In the last 16, van Gerwen took out a 114 checkout in a decider to knock out Raymond van Barneveld 6-5, while the Dutchman saw Nathan Aspinall miss a match dart in their quarter-final clash. Van Gerwen averaged 107.40 and prevailed once again 6-5 to edge past the reigning UK Open champion.
Dave Chisnall then missed four match darts against van Gerwen in the semi-finals, as the Premier League table-topper won 7-6 to extend his run of last-leg decider wins on the European Tour to 23 matches.
White, a winner on the European Tour last year, claimed wins over Darren Webster (6-2), Adrian Lewis (6-5) and Rob Cross (7-5) on Sunday to reach the final, but van Gerwen proved too strong, winning 8-3 to pick up his third European Tour title in four events played so far in 2019.
“I had to play well in this tournament because I was pushed against Nathan Aspinall and Dave Chisnall, and Ian came back quite well in the final too,” said van Gerwen, who has won six of the 10 tournaments he has played in this season.
“But I always felt quite comfortable and I always believe in myself, you can never give up.
“I knew I had never won here before so I had to win it today and I think I played a phenomenal tournament. I feel great and I’m really happy to be the winner.”
White, appearing in his third European Tour final, and first since that victory in the Dutch Darts Championship in September, reflected: “I’m pleased to have reached the final because it’s so hard playing top players all the time in these events.
“But when you get to the final you want to win it so I’m a bit disappointed with how that went but Michael is the best player in the world.
“I know I can beat him and I know other people can because as we saw today people had chances to beat him so we’ve just got to keep going.”
Picture: Sven Neuschäfer/PDC Europe