Home hero Van Barneveld aiming to pull off Premier League great escape in Rotterdam

Dutch legend RVB celebrates (credit:Lawrence Lustig/PDC)

Raymond van Barneveld believes he has what it takes to defy the odds and avoid elimination from the Premier League in his final competitive appearance in Rotterdam.

Van Barneveld, who has starred in every Premier League since his debut in 2006, makes the 14-mile trip from The Hague to the Rotterdam Ahoy for the final time as he bids to pull off a miraculous escape from the drop.

The Dutch darting icon faces a date with destiny against Players Champion Daryl Gurney on Wednesday knowing that anything short of maximum points could all but end his hopes of survival ahead of his show-down with Michael van Gerwen on Thursday.

Van Barneveld, however, is fully aware of the task in-hand and says he will relish his return to a venue which has witnessed some of his most memorable performances in recent years.

"My emotions are too high to contemplate saying goodbye to the fans just yet, I want to get two wins for them," said Van Barneveld.

"I still can't believe it's the last time I will play here in the Premier League, it still hasn't really sunk in.

"But away from the crowd and all the media attention, I am focused on performing to a good level which will get me the results I need and hopefully I will avoid elimination, which has never happened to me before."

Defeat for Barney, coupled with a victory for Michael Smith over Gerwyn Price, would see the 2014 Premier League champion eliminated with a game to spare, but the 51-year-old is hoping the partisan 12,000 crowd can roar him to victory.

"There is always belief, of course - to play in front of this amazing crowd all in orange - it's hard for your opponent, I know that for sure," he added.

"But you still have to play a great game and I need two wins to maybe survive relegation, but even with two wins, I'm not 100 per cent sure.

"Hopefully I can manage these two wins and not end my last Premier League relegated, because that would hurt me.

"My grandson is coming on Thursday, which I'm really happy about, he's three years old and is coming to watch his grandpa play Michael."


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Home hero Van Barneveld aiming to pull off Premier League great escape in Rotterdam

Raymond van Barneveld believes he has what it takes to defy the odds and avoid elimination from the Premier League in his final competitive appearance in Rotterdam.

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