Gerwyn Price retained his International Darts Open title, beating Rob Cross 8-6 in a thrilling final in Riesa.
The Iceman claimed his maiden European Tour title in Reisa last year and he returned to the German city to keep his hands on the trophy with a sparkling run that culminating in a classy final against Voltage
Price whose two other titles this year came with a Players Championship double in February, began his weekend’s work on Saturday with a 6-4 win over Kyle Anderson and on Sunday the same scoreline accounted for Joe Murnan and then a quarter-final win over UK Open champion Nathan Aspinall, who had led 4-2.
He produced arguably his best display in the semi-finals against Glen Durrant, pulling clear from three-all to take a 7-3 victory with a 102 average and seven doubles from 13 attempts, including a key 144 checkout, as he moved into the decider.
2019 International Darts Open – Finals Day
Glen Durrant 6-4 Daryl Gurney
Gerwyn Price 6-4 Nathan Aspinall
Peter Wright 6-0 Adrian Lewis
Rob Cross 6-1 Richard North
Gerwyn Price 7-3 Glen Durrant
Rob Cross 7-6 Peter Wright
Gerwyn Price 8-6 Rob Cross
The Welshman sealed the £25,000 first prize title in a see-saw final that saw Cross, who beat John Henderson, Joe Cullen, Richard North and Peter Wright on his way to the final, enjoy the better of the early stages.
A 12-dart break of throw saw Voltage in front early and a sensational 148 checkout saw him move 4-2 up. The Iceman’s 121 got him back within a leg only for Cross to edge clear again at 5-3 before Price stepped up in style.
Some clutch third-dart doubling saw him take out the next three legs to move 6-5 up, punishing three misses from Cross in leg 11. Voltage recovered to level but Price followed a 177 with an 88 finish to edge 7-6 up before taking out 108 on tops to secure the title.
“It’s the first time I’ve defended a title, so I’m over the moon,” said Price, who will defend his Grand Slam of Darts title in November.
“Every game is like that [final] for me now and when I play people like Glen and the top players in the world like Rob, it’s never going to be easy. I’m happy to get over the winning line.
“I had three weeks off and after the break, I wasn’t very confident – I changed my darts, had a new set of darts and it seemed to work for me.
“I usually start pretty well at the beginning of the year and then taper off, hopefully that’s a bit different this year. I’m a bit more confident now after winning this one.
“Maybe [I’ll have] a weekend off next week and then I can look forward to Gibraltar and the rest of the year.”
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