Premier League Darts celebrates its 11th anniversary this year after its inception in 2005. The tournament has gone from strength to strength in the decade it has been on the circuit, and is now one of the most prestigious competitions in the world of Darts.
Gary Anderson defending the title after defeating 2013 champion Michael van Gerwen in the final at the O2. Anderson was quietly fancied by the bookies to make it far in the play-offs after being paired against Dave Chisnall in the semi-final. He beat Chizzy 9-10 to make the final where he comfortably beat van Gerwen 7-11.
Betway will again sponsor the tournament in 2016, with the hosts expecting Anderson to give a solid shot at retaining his title. Betway, and most other leading sportsbooks, believe that Phil Taylor and Michael van Gerwen are the players to watch and have been installed as early favourites after their impressive form in recent months.
A Look At The History Books
Van Barneveld’s victory in 2014, followed by Anderson's last year, shows that anything can happen in Premier League tournaments. Things looked pretty grim for Barney after only winning three of his first nine games, but he managed to turn things around in the second half of the tournament and qualify for the play-offs. When Gary Anderson won the title in 2011, he managed 17 points from his first 14 games and finished 9 points behind first placed Taylor. Once you’re in the play-offs though, the form book goes out the window, something Anderson showed by beating the then World Champion Adrian Lewis and van Barneveld to take the Premier League crown.
Phil Taylor dominated the Premier League competition in its early years, winning the first four tournaments from 2005-2008. Since then though, he has not had things his own way. He has only won two of the last six Premier League titles, which doesn’t sound like a bad record at all. However, when you consider the dominance Phil Taylor has had over the sport in the last 20 years, you can see why he will consider that to be a bit of a drought. Taylor is still the most successful player in Premier League Darts history with six titles but recent years go to show that there is a lot to play for the other players in the competition to play for.
Most Premier League Titles
- Phil Taylor – 6 Titles
- Gary Anderson – 2 Titles
- James Wade – 1 Title (2009)
- Michael van Gerwen – 1 Title (2013)
- Raymond van Barneveld – 1 Title (2014)