Peter Wright Reigns Supreme after pulsating PDC World Darts Championship Final

Written by Richard Williamson
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When Peter Wright won the PDC World Championship two years ago, you could perhaps have forgiven him for taking his foot off the gas slightly.

That triumph over Michael van Gerwen in the final represented the crowning moment of a lifetime of toil. Having lost the World Championship final previously to the Dutchman, the Scot may well have felt as though things would never get any better than that single title to his name.

Here we are two years later, and ‘Snakebite’ has done it again. With a 7-5 win over Michael Smith in the final, Wright has etched his name into a star-studded list of players who have won the World Championship on more than one occasion, joining Phil Taylor, van Gerwen, Gary Anderson, Adrian Lewis, and John Part as the veritable princes of Alexandra Palace.

Far from experiencing any kind of decline after winning the World Championship for the first time at the age of 49, the Scot has kicked on in the period since and established himself as one of the best and most consistent players in the world. His 2021 was a year to remember, earning victories in the Players Championship Finals and the World Matchplay, while also finishing as runner up in the Grand Slam of Darts as he established himself as a regular favourite on the betting exchange. The World Championship triumph has been the icing on the cake.

The final itself was a match that swung dramatically, see-sawing between two players who, while not at their best, were producing the kind of gripping contest that the PDC showpiece has lacked in recent editions.

At 5-4 up with a break of throw, it looked as though it was going to be Smith’s moment in the sun — having beaten the in-form Jonny Clayton, the defending champion Gerwyn Price, and the experienced James Wade en route to the final, Smith seemed destined for the title.

But Wright did exactly what he does best and stuck to the task, producing some fine finishes to level at 5-5, before demonstrating the kind of cool-headedness which contrasts his bright red Mohican and lavish scalp paint. Two further sets secured the title, and Smith could hardly bear to look as his opponent held the giant Sid Waddell Trophy aloft.

“I'm over the moon, I've got her back,” Wright said afterwards. “This is my lady and I'm happy to get it back. I didn't turn up for eight sets and it was horrible and I was telling myself off so I stopped doing that. I was getting more and more frustrated with myself and I stopped doing that and that's why my darts straightened up.

“To be part of that elite group, people might have said I was lucky to win to beat Michael van Gerwen [in 2020] who wasn't on form that year but I can prove to everyone I can win it horrible as well.”

In terms of quality, it wasn’t the best final we’ve seen at the PDC World Darts Championship, but for drama and intrigue, it was right up there. Wright has proved that he is much more than a one-hit-wonder. It’ll be fascinating to see where the 51-year-old goes from here.

Read 1627 times Last modified on Thursday, 06 January 2022 14:23
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Richard Williamson

Richard Williamson

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