Adrian Lewis beat Raymond van Barneveld to win Players Championship Eight
Last Updated: 17/03/19 8:21pm
Adrian Lewis returned to winning ways with a first PDC title in almost two years, beating a rejuvenated Raymond van Barneveld 8-3 to win Players Championship Eight.
A memorable weekend of action in Wigan reached a dramatic conclusion as Jackpot and Barney battled their way through the field to reach a final that both men needed as they seek a move back up the rankings.
Despite seven world titles between them the pair are languishing outside the world's top 16 and just three years ago contested a World Championship semi-final where Lewis prevailed - and it was Jackpot who did so again at the Robin Park Tennis Centre.
"That was one of the hardest games I've ever played, it was a bit like going back in time," said Lewis, who produced a six-leg winning run to power his way to the title.
"Raymond is still one of the world's best players, he's having a tough time at the moment because the Premier League can be so difficult when you're on a losing run.
"It can be hard to pick yourself up when you start dreading it, so fair play to Raymond today he showed a lot of fight to reach the final.
"These floor tournaments are the hardest ones to win so I'm delighted to get back to winning ways and now I'm looking forward to getting back where I know I should be."
Lewis, who dropped no more than three legs in a match, started the day win a 6-0 whitewash of Mark Dudbridge, before victories over another pair of world champions in Mark Webster and Glen Durrant.
Luke Woodhouse and Vincent van der Voort were then dispatched before a 110 average accounted for Jonny Clayton in a 7-1 semi-final demolition.
Barney, who desperately needs a win to maintain his hopes of avoiding elimination in the Premier League, also battled his way into the final having come into Sunday's action on the back of six successive defeats.
The Dutchman survived a host of missed match darts from Zoran Lerchbacher after starting with a win over Shaun Carroll.
Geert Nentjes, Martin Schindler and Jan Dekker were all beaten on his way to the last four where he beat Keegan Brown in a last leg shoot-out before Lewis prevailed in the final
"I was really fighting today, it's really good for me to reach this final," said Van Barneveld, whose last ranking final was in 2015 and last title was the 2014 Premier League.
"Of course this gives me extra belief that anything is possible, but I want to say well done to Adrian.
"I have a lot of respect for the way he has battled back over the last year or so, and now I have to do the same in my final seven months in the game."
2019 Players Championship - Winners
|One||Michael van Gerwen|
|Three||Michael van Gerwen|
Saturday's winner Dave Chisnall suffered an early exit to Brown, while Gary Anderson's return from injury continues to frustrate after he suffered a first round exit at the hands of Conan Whitehead.
Peter Wright, Daryl Gurney, Michael Smith and Gerwyn Price also exited before the last-32 stage as the door opened for Lewis and Barney to make their return to the final.
Up next in the Premier League - Night Seven, Thursday
|Gerwyn Price||v||Rob Cross|
|James Wade||v||Peter Wright|
|Michael van Gerwen||v||Daryl Gurney|
|Micheal Smith||v||Mesnur Suljovic|
|Max Hopp||v||Raymond van Barneveld|
Players Championship 8
Ian White 6-1 Nathan Rafferty
Jonny Clayton 6-3 Robert Marijanovic
Adrian Lewis 6-2 Luke Woodhouse
Vincent van der Voort 6-2 Alan Tabern
Andy Boulton 6-3 Mervyn King
Keegan Brown 6-3 Cristo Reyes
Jan Dekker 6-0 Harry Ward
Raymond van Barneveld 6-5 Martin Schindler
Jonny Clayton 6-3 Ian White
Adrian Lewis 6-2 Vincent van der Voort
Keegan Brown 6-1 Andy Boulton
Raymond van Barneveld 6-2 Jan Dekker
Adrian Lewis 7-1 Jonny Clayton
Raymond van Barneveld 7-6 Keegan Brown
Adrian Lewis 8-3 Raymond van Barneveld
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