Phil Taylor wins 16th World Matchplay title in Blackpool
Tungsten Terminator Taylor is reborn with fairy-tale ending in Blackpool
By Raz Mirza
Last Updated: 31/07/17 1:33pm
Phil Taylor signed off at the Winter Gardens with a 16th World Matchplay victory on Sunday night as he saw off Peter Wright in emphatic fashion.
In Taylor's 107th match at the iconic Empress Ballroom, the darting legend left the stage for the final time having sealed an 18-8 win over the world No 3.
The 56-year-old had already defeated Gerwyn Price, Raymond van Barneveld, reigning champion Michael van Gerwen, and Adrian Lewis on his way to the final, and his continued his imperious form against Wright thanks to another vintage performance.
Taylor: Matchplay win is bonus
Phil Taylor says his farewell to the World Matchplay by winning another title
"I'm going to miss this place tremendously," Taylor told Sky Sports. "I'm done now, I've finished, it's enough. I'm 57 [on August 13]. My back is in half, my legs are killing me, it's hard. To win a major now at my age is fantastic."
In a high-quality opening session, it was Taylor who started the better by winning three of the first five legs.
But Wright, playing in his first World Matchplay final, buried in an immaculate 101 checkout to cling on to his coattails.
WATCH: King of World Matchplay
Phil Taylor is the king of the World Matchplay after winning a 16th title
Taylor broke Wright throw with an equally impressive 81 finish on the bull in the ninth leg before he moved 7-3 up with a second consecutive 12-dart leg.
The 16-time world champion was looking in ominous form on the oche, although Wright was more than happy to go toe-to-toe.
The next session was one of the best at the Winter Gardens. A 15-dart leg by Taylor was countered by a 12, 14 and an 11-dart leg from 'Snakebite' before 'The Power' rallied with an 11-darter of his own to move 9-6 up.
Taylor was in relentless form by now, and he tightened his grip on the final by winning four out of the next five legs to close in on his first major title for three years. His ninth two-dart combination helped him build an impressive 13-7 advantage.
And a sixth break of throw enabled Taylor to win the next leg after the interval - his 10th two-dart combination - before Wright missed a dozen darts at doubles to hand his opponent another leg against the arrows.
He moved one leg away from glory when he went 17-7 up, although Wright delayed the inevitable celebrations when he took out a cool 95.
But Taylor got the job done in the next leg when he sunk double 16 to master the World Matchplay and make more history.
When asked about the possibility of winning a 17th World Championship at Alexandra Palace, Taylor, who averaged 104.24, struck seven maximums, and finished with an impressive 56 per cent on doubles, said: "Do you know who I would like to meet in the final? Michael van Gerwen."
Taylor received a standing ovation in his favourite venue when he received the famous trophy and a cheque of £115,000.
He left the stage with an overall record reading 99 wins and just eight defeats from 107 matches spanning over 24 years - Taylor checked out in style with his 94th major title.
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