Raymond van Barneveld on his greatest game in darts against Phil Taylor
Barney recalls his 2007 World Championship final against Phil Taylor
By Henry Chard
Last Updated: 10/12/19 11:04am
In the seventh of our series, Raymond van Barneveld, preparing for his final World Darts Championship, chooses his 2007 final against Phil Taylor as his greatest game.
This year's action at Alexandra Palace starts this Friday, live on Sky Sports, and Barney is preparing for his swansong at a tournament where he enjoyed perhaps his finest ever moment.
Van Barneveld had competed in the 2006 BDO World Championship final before making the switch to the PDC for a greater challenge in February 2006 and he was determined to knock Phil Taylor off his perch,
The Dutchman cruised past Mitchell Clegg in the first round to set up a clash against world number one Colin Lloyd in the second round. The Dutchman edged out Jaws 4-3 to progress before sending Rico Vonk, Alan Tabern and Andy Jenkins packing on his way to the final without dropping a set.
Van Barneveld suffered the worst possible start in the final as Taylor raced into a 3-0 lead and it looked like The Power was well on his way to a fourth straight crown.
"I was worried a bit as Phil Taylor was the best player in the PDC, I was thinking maybe I will lose 7-0, especially when I was 3-0 down. Then something happened in the game and something clicked. I started playing well and beat Phil, the best player ever on the dartboard."
Barney fought back but still found himself 5-3 down. In a remarkable turnaround, the four-time BDO world champion went 6-5 up, one set away from glory. Taylor levelled things to take it to a last-set decider that was full of drama. Van Barneveld missed a dart at double 20 to take out 120 and win the title and then missed another at double top to end the tie. The Power punished him to take it all the way to a sudden-death leg. Barney won the throw for the bull and this time took out double top for his fifth world title.
"You see me yelling 'champion of the world' but if you ever spoke to me after that final and said 'Ray, this is your last World Championship final', I would have said 'you're nuts, never ever'. At the end of this year's World Championship, let's talk again and maybe I can show you the World Championship."
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It's not long to wait until darts is back on Sky Sports, the World Championship gets underway on Friday, December 13 at the Alexandra Palace in London with coverage continuing all the way to the final on Sunday, January 1.