Saturday saw a brand-new victor in live televised darts as Daryl Gurney emerged victorious at the World Grand Prix after overcoming Australian Simon Whitlock 5-4 in the final at the Citywest Hotel in Dublin.
The win, his first live TV event and first televised ranking final, was reward for a fine year at the oche for the Northern Irishman who has burst into the world’s elite in 2017 and now moves up to a career-high sixth on the PDC Order of Merit.
A quick start for Gurney
Gurney was on top from the start, taking the first two sets from the vastly more experienced Whitlock who subsequently fought back to take the lead at 4-3 following Gurney’s missed dart at a double.
The final two sets went Gurney’s way though when he won the eighth set 3-1 before landing double ten in the final set to claim the title before breaking down in tears as he celebrated the win.
“I’m lost for words – I can’t believe it, I really can’t. It feels better than anything else I’ve ever felt in my life. Dreams do come true and this is a dream,” said Gurney.
A look ahead
Naturally, the win has affected the current prices for December’s PDC World Championships at The Ally Pally. Act now and Daryl Gurney can be picked up for the winter’s big one as an outright winner for 25/1 the best price around by a wide margin. Another recent winner, Mensur Suljovic, is also 25/1 before the prices begin to drift out.
In just over a month’s time, the unique Grand Slam of Darts takes place where the best of the PDC compete against the best of the BDO. Before then, however, is the World Series of Darts Finals in November with the invitations for the three-day event confirmed.
Taking place after the conclusion of the worldwide World Series of Darts events, championship marks the end of the darts season. Eight players are taken directly from the World Series of Darts rankings, meaning Scottish pair Gary ‘The Flying Scotsman’ Anderson and Peter ‘Snakebite’ Wright plus Raymond van Barneveld, James Wade, Daryl Gurney, Kyle Anderson and Gerwyn Price will all be joining Michael van Gerwen in Glasgow. MVG, by the way, will be challenging to win a third successive title at Glasgow’s Braehead Arena.
Note, there will be no Phil Taylor, who has opted not to participate. Adrian Lewis, Mensur Suljovic, Dave Chisnall and Jelle Klaasen will all be in attendance though as the top four non-qualified players from the PDC Order of Merit.
In addition, there are four international invitations which have been awarded to Australian duo Simon Whitlock and Corey Cadby as well as Michael Smith and Max Hopp, with the remaining eight places going to qualifiers from Monday’s PDC Tour Card Holders’ Qualifier. These are darters are Rob Cross, Dimitri Van den Bergh, Chris Dobey, Justin Pipe, Jonny Clayton, Mark Webster, Jan Dekker and Simon Stevenson.
World Series of Darts Finals Player List
Eight Players from World Series Rankings
- Gary Anderson (Scotland)
- Michael van Gerwen (Netherlands)
- Peter Wright (Scotland)
- Raymond van Barneveld (Netherlands)
- James Wade (England)
- Daryl Gurney (Northern Ireland)
- Kyle Anderson (Australia)
- Gerwyn Price (Wales)
- PDC Order of Merit Qualifiers
- Adrian Lewis (England)
- Mensur Suljovic (Austria)
- Dave Chisnall (England)
- Jelle Klaasen (Netherlands)
- Simon Whitlock (Australia)
- Corey Cadby (Australia)
- Michael Smith (England)
- Max Hopp (Germany)
Eight PDC Tour Card Qualifiers
- Rob Cross
- Dimitri Van den Bergh
- Chris Dobey
- Justin Pipe
- Jonny Clayton
- Mark Webster
- Jan Dekker
- Simon Stevenson