Michael van Gerwen ‘sticking two darts up to doubters’ with form

Michael van Gerwen is on top of the world following his blistering start to 2022.

The Dutchman’s victory in the final of the Austrian Darts Open saw him return to the top of the PDC Pro Tour Order of Merit, above Gerwyn Price, who opted to skip the event in Graz. It is the first time in two years that Van Gerwen has sat at the top of the Pro Tour rankings, which are based on Players Championship and European Tour events.

A strong Pro Tour ranking helps players qualify for big televised events likes the World Championships, World Matchplay and World Grand Prix. And, after such a strong year up to now, commentator and former UK Open winner Paul Nicholson believes it is only a matter of time before the Green Machine gets his hands on another major title.

“Over the past few weeks, we have seen Michael Van Gerwen regain some territory in the fight for supremacy,” wrote Nicholson in his monthly column for the PDC website.

There were doubts over whether Van Gerwen could get back to his brilliant best after a couple of poor years by his high standards and Nicholson added: “Perhaps what MvG has done this year was indeed doubtful to most. He has stuck a giant two darts up to the doubters and used his Premier League confidence to good effect on the floor and the European Tour stage, winning two titles in very fruitful tournaments to him.

“For me, the biggest story of the year so far is the proof of just how a normally scheduled European Tour suits the best player of this generation and how important it is for him to get back into the major winning pool, which he currently can only watch from the sidelines, seeing the likes of Wright, Price and Jonny Clayton floating buoyantly like Californian sea otters. He has his trunks and his thirst for a swan dive, and it is only a matter of time before he makes a massive splash.

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“It could indeed come in the aforementioned Premier League, where he currently occupies a very safe play-off position, just behind leader Clayton and just in front of a resurgent James Wade who has won the last two league nights."

Next up for Van Gerwen is the Premier League's trip to Glasgow on Thursday night when he will face Joe Cullen in the quarter-finals.

Pro Tour Order of Merit 2022

1 Michael van Gerwen £145,250

2 Gerwyn Price £136,500

3 Peter Wright £94,500

4 Ryan Searle £85,000

5 Rob Cross £84,500

6 Luke Humphries £84,250

7 Jose de Sousa £83,500

8 Joe Cullen £83,250

9 Damon Heta £75,250

10 Nathan Aspinall £66,500

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