European Darts Matchplay - Report Final

Van Gerwen wins in Hamburg
Michael van Gerwen clinched a second European Tour title of 2017 as he beat Mensur Suljovic in the final of the HappyBet European Darts Matchplay at the Arena in Hamburg.

The World Champion was his typical rampant self and he started the game with a stunning 136 checkout after Suljovic missed a dart at D10 to break. Suljovic also started brightly, and held his throw to level early on. Van Gerwen held himself, before clinching the first advantage as he landed his second 180 and a 25 checkout for a 3-1 lead. A third 180 followed in the next leg as he landed a 32 checkout on D8 for a 4-1 lead. Suljovic got his second leg on the board, before van Gerwen moved to within one of victory at 5-2 with a 54 checkout. The checkout of the final came as Suljovic stayed alive with a stunning 164 outshot, but that was where it ended for the Austrian as van Gerwen landed a 75 checkout for his 16th European Tour title and the 25,000 pound top prize.

"To win tournaments like this takes a lot of energy, and I am really pleased I have managed to do it again," said Van Gerwen. "I come here to win, I am the huge favourite entering these tournaments and second will not do. I've won, and that makes me a very happy man. "I want to win as many tournaments as possible. It was a great game, and I am sure everyone in here enjoyed themselves. I'm a very proud man."
The Premier League champion also had some kind words for his opponent, who made his second final in succession on the European Tour. "Mensur admitted to me after the game that he deliberately slowed down to try and put me off," said van Gerwen. "It was big of him to admit that, but Germany and Austria can be very proud of this man - he is a phenomenal player and will win many more things."

Van Gerwen's run to the final started with a 6-3 victory over Mervyn King. In the Quarter-Finals, the Dutchman raced to a 5-0 lead over Peter Hudson, averaging nearly 119 before Hudson mounted an unlikely comeback - stringing together four straight legs before van Gerwen crawled over the line. Up next, he faced Michael Smith - who was on the hunt for a second European Tour title in a row after winning the Gibraltar Darts Trophy. Van Gerwen was too strong once more, landing 66 per cent of his doubles as he won 6-3.

Suljovic started his run to the final by edging out Daryl Gurney in a last-leg decider. In the Quarter-Finals, he brushed aside Dave Chisnall 6-3 and then Spain's Cristo Reyes by the same scoreline on his way to the 10,000 pound runner-up prize.

Earlier in the day, Stephen Bunting averaged 103, landed seven 180s and missed D12 for a nine-darter as he beat Kyle Anderson to book his place in the last 8, where he fell to Reyes.
Joe Cullen reached the Quarter-Finals as he put an end to Vincent van der Voort's strong run, before losing out to Smith.

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