GARY ANDERSON claimed the fourth major TV title of his career in style with a brilliant 11-6 win over Adrian Lewis in the Cash Converters Players Championship Finals last night.

The number one seed for the event after winning seven PDC ProTour events during 2014, Anderson lived up to that billing to win his first televised event since the 2011 Premier League – when he also overcame Lewis in the final.

Having overcome the former and current Lakeside Champions in Christian Kist and Stephen Bunting on his way to Sunday’s final stages, Anderson then defeated Phil Taylor for the first time in a televised knockout match for seven years in the quarter-finals.

He then overcame Holland’s Vincent van der Voort 11-7 in the semi-finals, despite the Dutchman hitting back from 10-3 down with four ton-plus finishes before Anderson finally sealed victory with a 103.86 average.

That display was followed by nine 180s in a fine display in the final as Anderson overcame world number three Lewis to claim the £65,000 first prize on a memorable St Andrew’s Day for the Scot.

Anderson broke with a 14-darter in the final’s opening leg and also led 3-1 before Lewis hit back to level at three-all with a 96 checkout before the Stoke ace landed double eight to lead for the first – and only – time.

The Scot took the next five legs without reply in an unstoppable burst as he surged into an 8-3 lead, with Lewis taking out 124 on the bull in a run of three successive legs to reply.

Anderson finished double four to regain his cushion before a 76 finish moved him 10-6 up, and he secured the title in style with a 118 checkout.

“I worked my heart out this year to get the number one seed and to be honest I’ve had probably the hardest draw that you could have had, so to win the tournament makes it very special,” said Anderson, who also returns to fourth on the PDC Order of Merit.

“I got stuck in and did the business, and it’s nice to defeat Phil and go on to win the tournament because not too many players do that.

“In the semi-final against Vincent I needed one more leg and all of a sudden he took four ton-plus finishes out on me, and I was sweating a bit so I was glad to get past him.

“I got off to a good start in the final too and it’s great to walk away with the trophy.”

Lewis had won the UK Open in March on his most recent visit to Minehead, and followed up his deciding-leg quarter-final win over Jamie Caven on Sunday afternoon by landing eight 180s in his 11-6 semi-final win over Wes Newton.

Lawrence Lustig/PDC

Lawrence Lustig/PDC

He claimed £35,000 as the runner-up to Anderson, and said: “Gary finished number one in the rankings for this event and he deserved to win.

“I dug in during the final but it just didn’t happen for me and he punished me for it, and fair play to Gary because he took his chances well.

“After the week I’ve had – with my son being taken into hospital on Thursday – I’m lucky to be in the final, and I think I lost all my momentum when I got 8-2 up against Wes, and the quarter-final probably took a lot out of me.

“I’ll go back home now and get back on the practice board now and get ready for the World Championship.”

Fleetwood ace Newton fell one game short of reaching his third major TV final as he failed to follow up his quarter-final win over Terry Jenkins by claiming another big-name scalp in the last four.

Newton’s £17,000 prize money for the weekend, though, takes him back into the world’s top 16, but he said: “I didn’t come out of the blocks quickly enough and I made it too easy for Adrian early on really.

“He was 8-2 up and he was cruising, but it just didn’t happen for me and fair play to Adrian because he did what he had to do to win the game.

“I can be proud of the weekend though because I’ve had a bad year but hopefully this can help spur me on for the World Championship now.”

Van der Voort had opened the tournament with a whitewash of Andy Hamilton and also defeated Peter Wright and Dean Winstanley as he reached his first major ranking semi-final since 2008.

“I started very poorly, in the first ten legs I didn’t get into the game and it was a struggle for me,” said the Dutchman. “I tried my hardest but it wasn’t there tonight.

“It’s difficult to play two matches in a day, but I have to learn from this and next time I have to be better.

“It’s massive achievement for me to reach the semi-finals and hopefully I can build on this because I’m really happy with my game at the moment.”

The £300,000 tournament, shown live on ITV4, had seen over 4,000 fans pack the Butlins Minehead Resort to see the top 32 players from the 2014 PDC ProTour Order of Merit do battle.

Following the success of the the event’s third staging at the venue, Cash Converters have extended their sponsorship for a further two years to cover the 2015 and 2016 Cash Converters Players Championship Finals alongside their ongoing partnership with the PDC.

“We are delighted to have Cash Converters as our Players Championship Finals sponsor for a further two years,” said PDC Chairman Barry Hearn.

“They have been an integral part of the growth of darts with us over the last five years, and the Players Championship Finals is a great event at Butlins Minehead.”

Richard Livesey, the Head of Marketing for Cash Converters in the UK, said: “We are delighted to announce the sponsorship of the 2015 and 2016 Cash Converters Players Championship.

“This weekend has become a focal point in the darts calendar as the final tournament of the year before the World Championship. Each and every year darts fans flock to Minehead and have a superb weekend and we feel privileged to be a part of it.

“The sponsorship deal will see Cash Converters continue to be a massive part of the darts family and grow the brand in the UK and internationally.”

Cash Converters Players Championship Finals Results

Sunday November 30
Adrian Lewis 11-6 Wes Newton
Gary Anderson 11-7 Vincent van der Voort
Best of 21 legs

Gary Anderson 11-6 Adrian Lewis
Best of 21 legs

Adrian Lewis 11-6 Wes Newton
0-1: Lewis hits the first maximum of the game before hitting double five to break in the opening leg.
0-2: After starting the leg with another 180, Lewis hits double 18 to move two legs in front.
0-3: Newton misses darts to hold throw and Lewis eventually breaks, landing double one.
1-3: Newton starts the leg with a maximum and then hits tops to hold after Lewis had missed three darts to go four legs in front.
1-4: Double 16 for Lewis as he regains his three leg lead and heads into the first break 4-1 ahead.
1-5: Lewis starts with a 177 and lands double nine to wrap up the leg.
1-6: Both players start with 180s before Lewis hits double one to move five in front.
2-6: Newton begins with a 180 again and then takes out five on double one.
2-7: Newton nails another maximum but Lewis hits tops to hold throw and regain his five leg advantage.
2-8: Newton misses two darts at double and Lewis takes out 56 on tops to break.
3-8: Immediate break back for Newton though.
4-8: Lewis misses darts to break and Newton takes out 74 on tops.
5-8: Third straight leg for Newton as he takes out 25 on double eight to break again.
5-9: Brilliant 125 checkout on tops for Lewis as he holds throw.
6-9: Newton hits back-to-back 180s before landing double 16.
6-10: Seven perfect darts for Lewis at the start of the leg before he eventually hits double four.
6-11: Lewis takes out 111 to seal the win in style.

Gary Anderson 11-7 Vincent van der Voort
1-0: Anderson starts in style as he takes out 76 on double eight for an 11-darter in the opening leg.
2-0: Second successive 11 dart leg for Anderson as he takes out 44 on tops.
2-1: van der Voort hits double six to hold throw and seal his first leg of the match.
3-1: Double five for Anderson as he regains his two leg lead.
3-2: van der Voort takes out 84 on double 11 to reduce the deficit to one leg again.
4-2: Double ten for Anderson as he holds throw and moves two legs ahead.
5-2: Anderson takes out 41 on tops for an 11 dart leg.
6-2: Anderson takes out 40 on double ten to move further ahead.
7-2: van der Voort misses three darts at double and Anderson punishes as he takes out 78 on double 12.
8-2: Anderson takes out 72 on double 12 as he closes in on the final.
8-3: Double 18 for van der Voort as he holds throw after the second break.
9-3: Anderson takes out 86 on double seven.
10-3: Double 18 for Anderson as he moves one leg away from the win.
10-4: van der Voort takes out 100 on double ten.
10-5: Second consecutive ton-plus finish for van der Voort as he takes out 130 on the bull.
10-6: 124 checkout on the bull for van der Voort as he takes a third consecutive leg.
10-7: Incredible from van der Voort as he takes out 144 on double 12, fourth straight ton-plus checkout for the dutchman.
11-7: Anderson eventually wraps up the win as he takes out 75 on double 12.

Gary Anderson 11-6 Adrian Lewis
1-0: Anderson opens the final with a 180 before finishing double eight for a 14-darter to break throw immediately.
2-0: Double top sees Anderson move two legs up.
2-1: First leg for Lewis as he hits double four.
3-1: Anderson hits double ten to head into a two leg lead.
3-2: Lewis takes out 75 on tops to hold throw before the first break.
3-3: Anderson misses three darts at tops and Lewis returns to take out 96 on double 12 to break.
3-4: Lewis holds as he takes out 36 on double eight.
4-4: First ton-plus checkout of the game goes Anderson’s way as he takes out 104 on tops.
5-4: Anderson breaks back as he takes out 25 on double six.
6-4: Five perfect darts for Anderson before he takes out 85 on tops for a 12 dart leg.
7-4: Anderson fires in his sixth 180 of the game before hitting tops to break.
8-4: Anderson takes out 40 again, this time on double ten to move four legs ahead.
8-5: 73 checkout on tops for Lewis as he holds throw.
8-6: Lewis breaks with a brilliant 124 checkout on the bull.
9-6: Great response from Anderson as he takes out 11 on double four to break back with a 13 dart leg.
10-6: Anderson takes out 76 to move a leg away from the title.
11-6: Anderson completes victory in style by finishing 118 on double 19.

About The Author