Players Championship: Michael Smith clinches third consecutive Pro Tour title in Germany
St Helens star Michael Smith warms up for World Cup of Darts with third consecutive Pro Tour title in a remarkable Players Championship 16 final against Dirk van Duijvenbode in Germany; "Whenever I need to pull a rabbit out of the hat, I'm able to produce something special"
Last Updated: 15/06/22 10:53am
Michael Smith continued his magnificent form to clinch a third consecutive Pro Tour title in a remarkable Players Championship 16 final in Germany.
The World Championship runner-up boasted a tournament average of almost 101 and landed 28 maximums across the afternoon to clinch his 19th PDC title - his fifth in as many weeks.
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Smith posted four ton-topping averages in scooping the £12,000 top prize in Niedernhausen, and he produced a stunning display to topple Dirk van Duijvenbode 8-6 in an astonishing final.
The Dutchman averaged 107.29 and landed seven 180s, but he was denied a third PDC ranking title by an inspired Smith, who averaged 105.58 and converted three ton-plus finishes to prevail.
"I'm in a rich vein of form and long may it continue," said Smith, who has now won 21 consecutive matches in Players Championship events.
"Every game I played today, I played really well. Whenever I need to pull a rabbit out of the hat, I'm able to produce something special.
"I'm looking forward to tomorrow now. There are some players missing, but you can only beat who is in front of you, and there's still a lot of top players here."
Smith began his campaign with a battling 6-4 win over Darius Labanauskas, before easing past Development Tour duo Lewy Williams and Nathan Rafferty to seal his spot in the last 16.
The 31-year-old fired in two 10-darters as he recovered from 4-3 down to defeat fellow St Helens star Stephen Bunting, and a 103 average saw him sweep aside an in-form Andrew Gilding in the last eight.
Smith continued his blistering run with a 106 average and a 7-3 win over Josh Rock in the last four, defying a 104 average from the Northern Irishman, who was featuring in a first Pro Tour semi-final.
John Henderson enjoyed his best run of 2022, warming up for the World Cup of Darts with wins over Simon Whitlock and Raymond van Barneveld to reach the last eight.
Humphries' 13-match winning streak culminated in a quarter-final defeat to Van Duijvenbode, while Gilding and Krzysztof Ratajski also impressed before bowing out at the same stage.
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The ProTour action continues with Players Championship 17 in Niedernhausen on Wednesday.
Players Championship 16
Tuesday June 14
Luke Humphries 6-2 Chris Dobey
Dirk van Duijvenbode 6-2 Dimitri Van den Bergh
Keane Barry 6-4 Dave Chisnall
John Henderson 6-5 Martin Lukeman
Michael Smith 6-4 Stephen Bunting
Andrew Gilding 6-5 Danny Noppert
Josh Rock 6-0 Gabriel Clemens
Krzysztof Ratajski 6-1 Damon Heta
Dirk van Duijvenbode 6-4 Luke Humphries
Keane Barry 6-2 John Henderson
Michael Smith 6-2 Andrew Gilding
Josh Rock 6-4 Krzysztof Ratajski
Dirk van Duijvenbode 7-1 Keane Barry
Michael Smith 7-3 Josh Rock
Michael Smith 8-6 Dirk van Duijvenbode