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Van Gerwen calls for change in World Cup of Darts format

Jamie Shaw in Darts Interviews 02 Dec 2019
Dutch dynamo MVG reacts (credit:Lawrence Lustig/PDC)
Michael van Gerwen has called for the format of the World Cup of Darts to be altered in order to feature more pairs matches.
Van Gerwen will team up with Jermaine Wattimena for the first time in Hamburg this week, with ‘The Machine Gun’ replacing Dutch stalwart Raymond van Barneveld.
Van Gerwen and Van Barneveld secured three PDC World Cup titles between 2014 and 2018 and MVG is looking to guide the Netherlands to a record fifth success in the unique invitational.
The World Cup is the only PDC event to incorporate pairs matches but is predominantly comprised of short format singles matches in the early rounds.
World number one MVG believes tournament organisers should reconsider the format and reduce the amount of singles fixtures.
“They should change the format of the World Cup,” said Van Gerwen.  “It’s not really a team event, it’s singles.
“It’s a lot of singles and I keep telling them – I like to see pairs.
“The World Cup will be interesting because there are a lot of players in good form, but also a lot of players in poor form and with the short format we could see some surprises.
“I want to win every tournament I compete in, of course that’s not easy but you have to set yourself high targets to stay sharp.
“That’s why I play so many events like the ProTours to keep my form going, even if i don’t win them I get a positive energy out of it which I can use for my next games.”
Speaking of Van Barneveld’s omission from the tournament for the first time, MVG added:  “With all respect to Raymond, I think Jermaine deserves his place but if I was in Raymond’s shoes I would be gutted.
“He was thinking he was pairing with me but things like that happen and if you don’t perform well enough, other people will play better and get picked.”
Van Gerwen heads to Hamburg on the back of his Premier League success a fortnight ago, and the green machine has already outlined his other key targets in the coming months.
He added: “For the rest of 2019 I’ve got two big targets – I want to win the World Matchplay, because I’ve performed badly there the last two years, and I want to win the Champions League of Darts because it’s the only TV title I’ve never won before.
“I know how hard it will be to win those two tournaments, along with everything else I will be playing in which I want to win too, but I am up to the challenge.”