Dave Chisnall: “I’m playing some good darts. I think I played better yesterday than I did today, but luckily for me I got away with a few games early on and did the job”
Last Updated: 02/11/23 9:35pm
Dave Chisnall claimed a fifth ranking title of 2023 as the ProTour season concluded with Players Championship 30 in Barnsley on Thursday.
Morecambe-based Chisnall has enjoyed a superb year on the circuit, winning three European Tour events and September’s Players Championship 23 in a memorable campaign.
He added a further title to end the Players Championship season in style on Thursday, overcoming Jim Williams 8-4 to scoop the £12,000 top prize.
Chisnall warmed up for the forthcoming Mr Vegas Grand Slam of Darts and Cazoo Players Championship Finals in style with seven superb victories in Event 30, with the highlight being a 111.35 average in a 6-2 quarter-final win over Scott Waites.
Chisnall also averaged over 105 in his Last 16 win over Jamie Hughes, and averaged at least 92 in each of his other five wins, which included early round defeats of Jeffrey Sparidaans and Irish duo Dylan Slevin and Steve Lennon.
He followed up his super-show in the quarter-finals by overcoming Winmau World Youth Championship finalist Gian van Veen 7-4, opening up a 4-1 lead before holding out for victory.
Chisnall then proved too strong for Williams in the decider, with a devastating six-leg burst seeing him open up a 6-1 advantage over the Welshman.
Williams won two of the next three to maintain his hopes, but Chisnall followed up a 167 checkout in leg ten with a seventh 180 of the contest as he closed out victory – going one better than on Wednesday when he was the runner-up to Gerwyn Price.
“I’m playing some good darts,” said Chisnall. “I think I played better yesterday than I did today, but luckily for me I got away with a few games early on and did the job.
“I know I can play the game, I’m playing well and it shows – it’s a good job there was no Gezzy here today to stop me!
“If I can keep winning these, it keeps me up the rankings. If I put some time in, I’ll definitely be better – I’m alright at the moment.”
Williams’ run to the final was his best result on the circuit this year – bettering his semi-final appearance in Players Championship 25 – as he won through to the decider.
His best display statistically came in a Last 16 victory over Mario Vandenbogaerde, where he averaged 105.27, in a result which was sandwiched between averages of 99 and 98 in wins over Josh Rock and Danny Noppert respectively, while he saw off Damon Heta 7-5 in a see-saw semi-final.
Heta was a semi-finalist for the 12th time on the PDC ProTour this year, seeing off World Champion Michael Smith in another strong day of darts.
Van Veen, meanwhile, followed up last weekend’s run to the semi-finals of the Machineseeker European Championship by reaching the last four of a third Players Championship in his breakthrough year.
Smith, Noppert and Waites were joined in the quarter-finals by youngster Cam Crabtree – who won through to the last eight for the second time on the ProTour but narrowly missed out on qualifying for the Players Championship Finals.
Former Grand Slam champion Waites needed to reach Thursday’s final to snatch qualification for the Players Championship Finals, and defeated Krzysztof Ratajski and Ross Smith in his valiant run to the last eight, meaning that he also missed out on a spot in Minehead later this month.
Ricky Evans held on to claim the 64th place in the Players Championship Finals on a memorable day which saw him land a nine-dart finish in the second leg of his first round win over Callan Rydz – taking just 36 seconds to complete a perfect leg!
European Championship winner Peter Wright headlined the stars who missed out on qualifying for the Players Championship Finals following his first round exit on Thursday.
Former finalist Mervyn King, World Matchplay champion Nathan Aspinall and Mensur Suljovic will also miss the Minehead event, which features the top 64 from the Players Championship Order of Merit following this year’s 30 events.
Welshman Price, who won four of the last eight events he competed in during 2023, topped the final Players Championship Order of Merit, ahead of Gary Anderson, Heta and Chisnall.
2023 Players Championship 30
Thursday November 2: The Barnsley Metrodome
Dave Chisnall 6-4 Jamie Hughes
Scott Waites 6-1 Ross Smith
Gian van Veen 6-5 Rob Cross
Cam Crabtree 6-4 Richard Veenstra
Damon Heta 6-2 Daryl Gurney
Michael Smith 6-3 Mickey Mansell
Jim Williams 6-2 Mario Vandenbogaerde
Danny Noppert 6-3 Stephen Bunting
Dave Chisnall 6-2 Scott Waites
Gian van Veen 6-2 Cam Crabtree
Damon Heta 6-2 Michael Smith
Jim Williams 6-3 Danny Noppert
Dave Chisnall 7-4 Gian van Veen
Jim Williams 7-5 Damon Heta
Dave Chisnall 8-4 Jim Williams
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