Michael van Gerwen claims the German Darts Masters to win £1million in prizemoney
Last Updated: 07/04/15 1:04pm
Michael van Gerwen created a slice of history with his third successive PDC European Tour victory at the German Darts Masters, defeating John Henderson 6-5 in the final taking him above £1million on the PDC Order of Merit.
Van Gerwen's incredible year has already seen him win the German Darts Championship and Gibraltar Darts Trophy, and he continued his unbeaten run on the European Tour stage by scooping the £25,000 first prize once again.
The Dutch star delighted capacity crowds at the Ballhausforum in Munich throughout the Easter weekend, defeating Gary Stone, eliminating Jamie Caven and then overcoming William O'Connor and Peter Wright to reach the final.
The world No.1 had looked set to storm to victory when he won the opening three legs in an explosive start to the decider, only for Henderson to fire his challenge with a 147 checkout.
The Scot - roared on by the Munich crowd - then took out a 13-darter and tops to level the contest, with van Gerwen responding with legs of 12 and 14 darts to move 5-3 up.
Henderson then finished 126 and 98 to take the final into a deciding leg, but van Gerwen was too strong with the advantage of throw as a 14-darter sealed another triumph.
"This is a brilliant win for me," said van Gerwen. "John played really well throughout the tournament and it was very difficult in the final.
"This will boost John's confidence for the rest of the year now and he made me work very hard, but I'm really glad that I'm the one holding the winner's trophy.
"I'm delighted to win this and it continues a great year for me. I want to keep this going now because I'm playing well and loving my darts."
Million pound mark
Van Gerwen's win sees him become only the second player - behind Phil Taylor - to reach £1m in prize money on the PDC Order of Merit, which is based on prize money won in ranking events across a two-year period.
It's a fantastic achievement for me to reach the £1million barrier and I'm really glad that I've done it
Michael van Gerwen
"It's a fantastic achievement for me to reach the £1 million barrier and I'm really glad that I've done it," added the 25-year-old.
"You need to work really hard for it and have great support, and I'm practising hard and enjoying myself.
"I love darts and it feels great for me."
Henderson's run to the final was his best-ever on the PDC circuit, having reached his only previous semi-final in a Players Championship in Germany in 2011.
Henderson - a quarter-finalist in last year's German Darts Masters - had battled through the UK Qualifier just to win his spot in Munich, and overcame Cristo Reyes and Michael Smith to reach Monday's finals day.
He went through to the last eight with a brilliant whitewash of Andrew Gilding before averaging 107 in a 6-1 quarter-final defeat of Brendan Dolan, before then seeing off Adrian Lewis 6-4 in the semis.
The £10,000 prize money won by Henderson puts him in a strong position to qualify for the year's TV majors, including July's World Matchplay, and was a huge boost to the Scot's confidence.
"I've had an amazing weekend but Michael was too good for me in the final," said Henderson. "The crowd were fantastic and I wouldn't have got into the final without their support, but I played some really good darts too.
"It's been one of the best weekends of my career and I want to build on this now.".
Premier League Darts returns live to Sky Sports this Thursday April 9 from 7pm.