- World Matchplay
Taylor thrashes Van Gerwen for 15th Matchplay title
Phil Taylor added to his incredible list of career achievements with a devastating display against world champion and world No.1 Michael van Gerwen to win the World Matchplay for the 15th time.
It is now seven years since Taylor lost a match at the Winter Gardens and he stomped all over Van Gerwen from the off.
He raced to an 11-2 advantage with and 11- and 12-darter thrown in for good measure along the way and even some confusion and miscalculation in the 15th leg over Van Gerwen's winning checkout failed to bring anything other than a smile from Taylor.
Van Gerwen closed to 11-5 down but Taylor stomped on the comeback in sensational fashion. Needing 124 and knowing Van Gerwen had three darts at double tops to win a fourth leg in a row should he miss, Taylor nervelessly hit the checkout.
Even Van Gerwen exchanged words of congratulations with Taylor in the break between legs after that, to which Taylor simply puffed out his cheeks, almost in astonishment at how well he was playing.
After narrowly failing to checkout against throw in the 26th leg, Taylor completed the job in the very next leg with a 57 checkout to complete an 18-9 victory, much to the crowd's delight.
"The last six months have been an absolute nightmare for me," said Taylor to Sky Sports after collecting the trophy once again. "I think it's my best ever [victory]. Coming up here and trying so hard, especially against Michael.
"He beat me 7-0 [in the Premier League earlier this year]. That fella there is tremendous, he's got years left and I haven't."
A tearful Van Gerwen said: "I wanted to give him a great game and I couldn't do that. I'm a bit disappointed in myself. He was the better one today - I wanted to win this so much."