Former local darts player Gary Anderson was on top of the world at the weekend after winning the William Hill PDC World Championship.
Anderson, who comes from Eyemouth, and used to play in the Berwick League, lifted the title with a nerve-tingling 7-6 win over 16-times winner Phil ‘The Power’ Taylor at the Alexandra Palace in London on Sunday.
The ‘Flying Scotsman,’ who had come through a classic semi-final against defending champion Michael van Gerwen from Holland in the semi-finals, got off to a flying start against Taylor and led 3-1 in sets in the first-to-seven race.
But Taylor hit back to win the next three, when he claimed a remarkable nine of the next ten legs, and go 3-4 in front.
Anderson levelled at 4-4 and then, despite seeing three darts fall out of the treble 20 for a ‘no score,’ he managed to recover and go 6-4 in front, putting him just one set away from victory and the £250,000 first prize.
But in a game which had everyone on the edge of their seats, back came Taylor again, and using all his resolve, he won the next two sets to level it up again at 6-6, taking the match to a last set decider.
On the way Taylor went agonisingly close to a nine-dart finish, failing to hit the x12 finish.
In the all or nothing set Anderson won all three legs for his first ever world title, putting the 2011 defeat to Adrian Lewis well and truly behind him.
The Scot found one final burst of energy as he took the opening two legs of the final set, and opened the third with his 19th maximum of the game before sealing victory on x12.
“Me and Phil have had some battles over the last five or six years, he’s won a lot of them but I’ll take my win now!” said Anderson as he lifted the giant trophy, which is dedicated to the memory of the late, great commentator, Sid Waddell.
“Phil is the best, he always will be the best - even 100 years from now - so that makes winning this against him that bit more special.”
“I think it’s going to take a while to sink in.
“When Phil got back and won those two sets to make it 6-6 I thought the game was gone - Phil’s been there 16 times and knows how to win it from there, but I came out strong in the last and managed to take it in the end.”
The championship trophy was presented by champion jockey Tony McCoy, and immediately after the event it was confirmed by promoter Barry Hearn that Anderson will now contest the 2015 Premier League as one of the four automatic qualifiers, along with Taylor, van Gerwen, and Lewis. Others involved are Raymond van Barneveld, Peter Wright, James Wade, Stephen Bunting, Dave Chisnall and Kim Huybrechts.
Anderson won the Premier League in 2011.