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Barney finally lands Premier League darts crown at Greenwich
Updated 10:00am Friday 23rd May 2014 in Sport
The winner salutes the Barney Army and earns applause from opponent and fellow Dutchman Michael van Gerwen. Pictures by Lawrence Lustig/PDC.
Raymond van Barneveld ended nine years of disappointment by defeating Phil Taylor and Michael van Gerwen in one glorious night at Greenwich’s O2 to lift the Betway Premier League darts title.
The Dutch superstar won past the semi-finals of the tournament for the first time in seven attempts as he also ended his hoodoo against Taylor, who he had never defeated in the tournament in almost a decade.
Taylor had taken an early 4-1 lead in their semi-final as he set out his stall for a seventh Premier League Darts title.
However, the Stoke great missed six darts to move 5-2 ahead as the Dutchman pounced to win five successive legs in moving 6-4 up, before going on to claim an 8-5 triumph with an 11-dart leg.
He then returned to the stage against reigning champion van Gerwen, and though he trailed after van Gerwen opened the final with two 180s in claiming the opening leg in 13 darts, van Barneveld took command with some superb darts.
The five-time world champion won three successive legs to move 3-1 up.
And even though van Gerwen hit two 11-dart finishes as he pulled back to level at 5-5, van Barneveld found another gear to pull away.
The 47-year-old took four successive legs to lead 9-5, including a 12-darter and two 13-dart legs.
A 110 checkout from van Gerwen kept him in the game briefly before a fifth 180 of the final helped van Barneveld to set up double ten for glory.
“This means the world to me, I can't describe how happy I am,” said van Barneveld, who scoops £150,000 for the victory.
“I’ve worked really hard this season and every week was tough, but I really enjoyed it.”
Barney was also keen to thank the tournament’s organisers for allowing him to take part in the event.
He explained: “Nine years ago I joined the PDC and got a wildcard to play in the Premier League and I thought this was the best event in the world - but I’ve never been able to get past the semi-finals!
“This year the PDC and Sky believed in me and gave me a wildcard,and finally I've got into the final and I've won the whole thing.
“Beating Phil and Michael in one night is fantastic.”
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