Gerwyn Price and Gary Anderson renew their rivalry in the most important fixture of all as they face off in…
Gerwyn Price and Gary Anderson renew their rivalry in the most important fixture of all as they face off in the 2020/21 World Darts Championship final on Sunday.
The box office duo are set to provide a fitting climax to what has been a unique and fascinating William Hill World Championship as they vie for the sport’s ultimate prize.
For Anderson, this marks his fifth appearance in a PDC World Championship final, while Price finds himself in a first as he looks to create a slice of history.
Price has gone one better than his run to the Semi-Finals last year, where he was beaten by eventual champion Peter Wright, and is out to culminate a sensational season by lifting the Sid Waddell Trophy.
The world number three has already claimed World Grand Prix, World Series Finals and World Cup of Darts glory this term and now stands on the cusp of becoming the first Welshman ever to win a PDC world title.
The 35-year-old has had to do it the hard way in reaching the final at Alexandra Palace, coming through two sudden death legs as well as mounting a superb Semi-Final fightback.
He began by edging out Welsh compatriot Jamie Lewis 3-2 in the Last 64 before narrowly denying Brendan Dolan in a last-leg shoot-out.
Price was then clinical in thrashing Mervyn King 4-1 in the Last 16, but again needed a sudden death decider to deny Daryl Gurney in the Quarter-Finals.
The Semi-Finals also saw him flirt with elimination after going 3-1 down to Stephen Bunting, only to reel off five of the next six sets to set up a date with destiny.
As well as the world title on the line, ‘The Ice Man’ also knows he that if he was to be crowned World Champion on Sunday night, he would also become the new world number one, ending MVG’s seven-year reign.
Anderson, meanwhile, is bidding for a third William Hill World Championship title, having reigned consecutively in 2015 and 2016.
He was also runner-up in 2011 and 2017 has continued his terrific run of consistency on the sport’s most iconic stage despite an indifferent year coming into the event.
Anderson, who celebrated his 50th birthday less than fortnight ago, headed to Ally Pally as a 33/1 outsider, having struggled with injury woes in recent months.
However, he has defied those odds and is now on the verge of becoming Scotland’s most decorated World Champion, eclipsing the joint tally he shares with the great Jocky Wilson.
Anderson kicked with a 3-1 win over Latvia’s Madars Razma, before edging out Mensur Suljovic 4-3 in a marathon contest, after which he launched a furious tirade on the Austrian in his post-match interview.
That appeared to fire up ‘The Flying Scotsman’ – who went on to whitewash Devon Petersen 4-0 before thrashing an in-form Dirk van Duijenbode 5-1 with a 101 average.
The World Matchplay finalist sealed his spot in the final by dispatching Dave Chisnall 6-3 with a 100 average on Saturday night.
There is little to choose between Price and Anderson in terms of their overall head-to-head record, with the Scotsman narrowly edging it 8-7, though ‘The Ice Man’ has won five of their last seven meetings.
The final signals a repeat of the infamous 2018 Grand Slam final, which Price won 16-13 after one of the most controversial matches ever contested.
Price was handed a record £21,500 in fines and a suspended three-month ban for his antics, while Anderson was given a formal warning by the DRA.
The pair have since buried the hatchet but will be fired-up in their quest to land the £500,000 first prize and stand on top of the world of darts.
The final gets underway from 7.30pm GMT and will be contested over the best of 13 sets, best of five legs per set.
In a change from previous World Darts Championship rules to reduce the possibility of sessions over-running, there will be no tie-break. Should the deciding set reach two-all, the fifth leg would be the final leg.
Price v Anderson – Player’s View:
Price: “I’m here to win this and I’m in the final so I’ve got every chance now.
“I’m full of confidence after that game [Semi-Final]. I definitely improved for this match but there is a lot more in the tank.
“I always seem to find that bit of extra edge when I need to and I know I have got what it takes to win the final.
“The trophy’s coming home to the right place!”
Anderson: “I’ve come here with no expectations whatsoever but I’ve managed to make it through to the final so it can’t be bad.
“I feel like I’ve played alright for most of this tournament and I’ll give it a good go in the final.
“I think I need to play better against Gerwyn but I’ll just play my darts and he’ll play his. I’ll be quiet and he’ll be loud and we’ll see how it goes.
“If I can shut him out, he won’t be able to celebrate.
“For Wayne [Mardle] and Rod [Harrington] to call me a “three-time World Champion” – it’d be great.”