Peter Wright? It was always the Scotsman with the colored pants and hair who came second on the darts stages of the world. In 2014 he wanted to end his career. And now: world champion! About a man who never gave up his dreams.
The first arrow that could have made Peter Wright world champion shot past the field of double ten to the right a few millimeters. The second, even scarcer, touched the silver ring, nevertheless: over. The 3000 spectators in the Alexandra Palace in London groaned painfully. Wright still needed 20 points. Did it start again? The Scotsman Wright in his arrow throwing experience in the most important moments drove so many darts past the predetermined goal that he had been chosen with some right to “eternal second”. The pressure in big games, he was always the enemy of Peter Wright. In the 2017 Premier League final, he once had six of these match darts available before he collapsed under the emotional load, all six went wrong.
But now this: arrow number three, into the double ten. Whoosh! Wright, 49, had actually won the world championship title for the first time in his long career, now he shot – washed! – tears in the eyes.
Shortly afterwards when Wright hugged the Sid Waddell Trophy, the 25 kilo silver giant cup, and stretched it in the air, his trousers, this spotted color accident, glowed to the far corners of the “Ally Pally”. The pants, the purple shirt, the tattooed arms, the purple mohawk hairstyle – Wright is rightly regarded as the brightest bird in his already colorful sport. Loved by the fans and sung many times, but without a really big win until Wednesday evening. Now the 7: 3 in the final against Michael van Gerwen, the three-time world champion and big favorite from the Netherlands, a result that is not even close. “It just feels great, I can’t believe it,” said Wright. Now he laughed and cried at the same time.
So far, it has been an unwritten rule in darts that the Scotsman reliably creates a stir in big tournaments with daring outfits and can play well, but never wins a title – especially not against van Gerwen, whom he defeated nine times in nine major finals has been, sometimes at terrible heights. This is Wright’s story, or it was, because this time Wright presented his best darts at the most important moment, maybe a little more than he could have expected. “Almost everyone had written me off because I had failed so often because of Michael,” Wright said in a TV interview before dedicating the victory to his wife Joanne and children: “It’s all for her, for the kids and the family You always said that one day I would be world champion. ” This time, on New Year’s Day 2020, he was no longer the old Peter Wright: “I was just a different person.”
What Wright alluded to: He shouldn’t have been up on the stage at all. Six years ago, at the end of 2013, Wright had announced the end of his career in the middle of a terrible season. Because he had health problems, hardly won a game, and believed himself far from being able to feed his family with his art. Wright and his wife had decided it should be over after the 2014 World Cup, before he surprisingly stormed into the final, lost there, but revised his decision. “My story shows that you should never give up dreams,” said Wright. At this World Cup almost everything would have been over early. Wright’s nerves were strained by the Philippines in his opening match against Noel Malicdem. Wright was on the verge of being out, Malicdem had a match dart, awarded it, Wright only prevailed in the Sudden Death Leg of the fifth set. Not the only moment of shock: In the round of 16 against Jeffrey de Zwaan he broke in after a 3-0 set lead; It was only when de Zwaan equalized that Wright thought and won.
Fallon Sherrock was the first woman to receive a ticket to the Premier League after her historic appearance at the Darts World Cup. The 25-year-old Englishwoman will start on the second match day in Nottingham (from February 13) as a so-called contender (contender). This was announced by the Professional Darts Corporation (PDC). Sherrock, a single hairdresser from Milton Keynes, was the first woman to defeat a man at Alexandra Palace in London in a mixed darts World Cup and even reached the third round. There she lost to her fellow countryman Chris Dobey. There are nine permanent participants in the Premier League 2020, including world champion Wright, world championship finalist Michael van Gerwen and former world champion Rob Cross. SID
There was nothing left of tremors like this in the finale. Wright’s 2-0 lead equalized van Gerwen, then Wright got stronger and stronger. With a cool head and a quota of more than 50 percent on the double fields, he snatched the favorite game after game, sentence after sentence. The audience celebrated Wright with hoots and long-lasting singing (while van Gerwen was whistled when he entered the hall), the Dutch got angrier with every dart Wright had hissed into a double field in the first attempt. It was as if Wright had left his nerve at home on the lonely farm in Suffolk, where he lives a secluded life when he is not on the British darts. Wright comes from a poor background, because his mother couldn’t buy him a dartboard, he threw his arrows on trees in the forest as a teenager. “So many people put me down and said this is a man for second places,” said the new world champion at the press conference and asked pointedly, addressed to all critics: “I was called a clown, but who ends up laughing best?”
Wright certainly benefited from the fact that van Gerwen could not show everything that was normally in him at this World Cup. The Dutchman dragged himself through the first few laps, rarely came into his notorious flow, which earned him the nickname “The Green Machine”, the green machine. In the final, van Gerwen had big problems checking out the double fields – once he gave six darts in a row, Wright made the break. “If you don’t hit the doubles, it will be difficult,” complained van Gerwen about his fallibility. He now has to wait for his fourth world title: “I had my chance and didn’t take it.” Wright, on the other hand, van Gerwen fairly recognized that he “played excellently.
For van Gerwen it is the end of a very paradoxical season. The superior world number one has won 15 titles, more than any of his competitors, from the Masters in Milton Keynes to the Champions League he couldn’t be beaten. Van Gerwen has proven many times that with his 30 years he is the best darts player in the world and will probably stay for a while. But he missed the most important one, the World Cup title. Wright was there at his best moment. His simple explanation: “I felt that it was my turn.”