Three-time World Darts Champion Michael van Gerwen is one of the biggest stars of world sport. The Dutch sensation was the youngest player ever to win a major darts title, having won the World Masters in 2006, aged just 17. ‘Mighty Mike’ won several Open tournaments as a teenager as he took the darting world by storm.
Michael clinched his first major PDC title in October 2012, when he took the £100,000 World Grand Prix title in Dublin, as he came back from four sets to one down in the final to defeat Mervyn King 6-4. He followed it with another exciting run to the final of the next televised tournament, The Grand Slam of Darts, where he continued to delight his growing army of fans with some electrifying displays, none more so than his 10-5 triumph over then 15-time World Champion Taylor in the last 16, when he averaged over 108.
His performances for 2013 were rewarded with three honours at the annual awards dinner as ‘Mighty Mike’ picked up the Fans Player of the Year, PDPA Players Player of the Year and Young Player of the Year awards. His remarkable rise to fourth in the PDC order of Merit saw him receive automatic qualification for the prestigious 2013 McCoy’s Premier League, which he went on to win in typically sensational style. Michael van Gerwen became the only player other than Taylor to top the league table before clinching the £150,000 first prize by defeating ‘The Power’ in a brilliant final. Three days later, van Gerwen was tasting glory again when he beat Simon Whitlock in the final of the European Darts Open in Dusseldorf, before going on to win the inaugural Dubai Masters. He added a third televised PDC major with victory over Taylor in the final of the 2013 Players Championship, which he had entered as number one seed after a fantastic season on the Pro Tour.
Following a sensational 2016, which saw van Gerwen take a record 25 titles, the world number one was crowned 2017 World Champion after a blistering campaign at Alexandra Palace. He averaged over 100 in every match on his way to glory, including a World Championship record average of over 114 in his semi-final win against van Barneveld.
In 2018, Van Gerwen won The Masters, Premier League and World Grand Prix before going on to regain the World Championship title, having surrendered it to Rob Cross 12 months earlier. The world number one strengthened his ranking position even further when his final victory over Michael Smith earned him the sport’s biggest ever prize of £500,000. He continued his success early in 2019 by winning The Masters.