Reports

Joe Cullen claims maiden PDC Pro Tour title with victory in Players Championship 8

By Alex Moss
9 APRIL 2017 • 10:00PM

Joe Cullen won his first PDC Pro Tour title as he claimed victory in Players Championship 8 in Barnsley today, beating Daryl Gurney 6-5 in the final.

The Yorkshireman had won three Development Tour events in 2011 and also reached three previous ranking finals, but he finally got over the line at senior level this evening.

“I’m so happy,” Cullen said. “Daryl missed nothing so I had to take my chances.

“I always believe I can win. I used to think I could rely on my natural talent but now I’m putting the work in.

“Now if I fall I can look at it and think I’ve worked for it in the right way.”

Cullen began the day by surviving two match darts against Yordi Meeuwisse in the first round, before going on to win in a deciding leg, and 6-3 wins over Robert Owen, Steve Beaton and John Michael booked the 27-year-old a place in the quarter-finals.

A 6-4 victory against James Richardson continued his good run, with the 2016 UK Open quarter-finalist repeating the scoreline in a closely-contested semi-final with Mervyn King.

The final saw Cullen come up against Gurney, who had won his maiden PDC title in yesterday’s Players Championship 7, and he would prove a difficult obstacle as he chased back-to-back titles.

Gurney firstly saw off David Pallett, Ronnie Baxter and Kirk Shepherd, before knocking out Premier League player Dave Chisnall 6-4 to reach the last eight.

The Northern Irishman then defeated Stuart Kellett and James Wade, both 6-4, to progress into the final.

The final began with Cullen firing in a maximum before hitting seven perfect darts in the third leg to take a 2-1 lead.

A 14-dart leg then followed as Cullen broke the Gurney throw before holding to move 4-1 up.

The pair then traded holds of throw, with Cullen moving to within a leg of the match at 5-3, however an 11-dart break from Gurney kept the contest alive.

Gurney held his throw to take the match to a deciding leg, where he then missed the bullseye to claim a second title in as many days.

Cullen stepped in to hit double four to claim the £10,000 prize and his maiden Pro Tour title.

The day also saw world number five Wade produced a strong showing as he reached the semi-finals for the first time since February, alongside King, who battled through to the last four for a second successive Sunday.

Gerwyn Price followed up a run to Saturday’s semi-finals by reaching the quarter-finals 24 hours later, alongside Robbie Green, Richardson and Kellett, who enjoyed his best run on the Pro Tour for nearly three years.

The Easter weekend sees the PDC European Tour return with the HappyBet German Darts Masters from April 15-17 in Jena, Germany.

Players Championship 8
Sunday April 9, Barnsley Metrodome
First Round
Wayne Jones 6-4 Peter Wright
Terry Roach 6-5 Diogo Portela
John Henderson 6-3 Jonny Clayton
Mick Todd 6-1 Zoran Lerchbacher
Steve West 6-5 Tony Newell
Robbie Green 6-3 Ryan Palmer
Stephen Bunting 6-2 Ross Twell
Antonio Alcinas 6-0 Andy Boulton
Alan Norris 6-4 Ritchie Edhouse
Andy Hamilton 6-2 Richie Burnett
Jamie Bain 6-3 Darren Webster
Chris Quantock 6-5 Dennis Smith
James Wade 6-3 Brendan Dolan
Rob Hewson 6-4 Wes Newton
Mark Barilli 6-4 Christian Kist
Sven Groen 6-5 Jeffrey de Graaf
Paul Nicholson 6-2 Kim Huybrechts
Ricky Williams 6-5 Vincent Kamphuis
Raymond van Barneveld 6-3 Jeffrey de Zwaan
Matthew Dennant 6-5 Mark Walsh
Warrick Scheffer 6-3 Michael Smith
Stuart Kellett 6-5 Dirk van Duijvenbode
James WIlson 6-3 Brian Woods
Haruki Muramatsu 6-2 John Bowles
Dave Chisnall 6-0 Jamie Lewis
Mick McGowan 6-3 Terry Temple
Ronny Huybrechts 6-3 Steve Hine
Ricky Evans 6-3 Stephen Burton
Daryl Gurney 6-2 David Pallett
Ronnie Baxter 6-3 Matt Clark
Kyle Anderson 6-4 Jan Dekker
Kirk Shepherd 6-2 Mike De Decker
Mensur Suljovic 6-5 Peter Jacques
Richard North 6-4 Lee Bryant
Josh Payne 6-5 Adam Hunt
Martin Schindler 6-4 Devon Petersen
Cristo Reyes 6-3 Prakash Jiwa
Darren Johnson 6-1 Darron Brown
Mervyn King 6-0 Andy Jenkins
Peter Hudson 6-4 Joe Murnan
Benito van de Pas 6-3 John Norman Jnr
Rob Cross 6-4 Keegan Brown
Robert Thornton 6-1 Harry Robinson
Jamie Caven 6-1 Ted Evetts
Gerwyn Price 6-0 Jim Brown
Mickey Mansell 6-2 Mark Webster
Adrian Lewis 6-3 Scott Taylor
Steve Lennon 6-4 Berry van Peer
Vincent van der Voort 6-4 Ian White
Jimmy Hendriks 6-5 Jonathan Worsley
Jermaine Wattimena 6-4 Bryan De Hoog
James Richardson 6-5 Kevin Painter
Richie Corner 6-4 Jelle Klaasen
Ron Meulenkamp 6-3 Ryan Meikle
Chris Dobey 6-2 Aden Kirk
Maik Langendorf 6-3 Simon Preston
Craig Gilchrist 6-5 Simon Whitlock
John Michael 6-1 Andy Parsons
Justin Pipe 6-5 Colin Roelofs
Rowby-John Rodriguez 6-2 Ray Campbell
Joe Cullen 6-5 Yordi Meeuwisse
Robert Owen 6-5 Dimitri Van den Bergh
Steve Beaton 6-2 William O’Connor
Madars Razma 6-4 Scott Darbyshire

Second Round
Wayne Jones 6-1 Terry Roach
John Henderson 6-3 Mick Todd
Robbie Green 6-3 Steve West
Antonio Alcinas 6-4 Stephen Bunting
Alan Norris 6-1 Andy Hamilton
Jamie Bain 6-3 Chris Quantock
James Wade 6-3 Rob Hewson
Sven Groen 6-5 Mark Barilli
Paul Nicholson 6-3 Ricky Williams
Raymond van Barneveld 6-4 Matthew Dennant
Stuart Kellett 6-5 Warrick Scheffer
James Wilson 6-4 Haruki Muramatsu
Dave Chisnall 6-5 Mick McGowan
Ricky Evans 6-4 Ronny Huybrechts
Daryl Gurney 6-1 Ronnie Baxter
Kirk Shepherd 6-2 Kyle Anderson
Richard North 6-2 Mensur Suljovic
Josh Payne 6-3 Martin Schindler
Cristo Reyes 6-1 Darren Johnson
Mervyn King 6-3 Peter Hudson
Rob Cross 6-4 Benito van de Pas
Robert Thornton 6-1 Jamie Caven
Gerwyn Price 6-2 Mickey Mansell
Adrian Lewis 6-3 Steve Lennon
Jimmy Hendriks 6-5 Vincent van der Voort
James Richardson 6-4 Jermaine Wattimena
Richie Corner 6-2 Ron Meulenkamp
Maik Langendorf 6-2 Chris Dobey
John Michael 6-2 Craig Gilchrist
Rowby-John Rodriguez 6-3 Justin Pipe
Joe Cullen 6-3 Robert Owen
Steve Beaton 6-1 Madars Razma

Third Round
Wayne Jones 6-2 John Henderson
Robbie Green 6-2 Antonio Alcinas
Alan Norris 6-0 Jamie Bain
James Wade 6-2 Sven Groen
Raymond van Barneveld 6-2 Paul Nicholson
Stuart Kellett 6-4 James Wilson
Dave Chisnall 6-4 Ricky Evans
Daryl Gurney 6-2 Kirk Shepherd
Josh Payne 6-4 Richard North
Mervyn King 6-4 Cristo Reyes
Robert Thornton 6-4 Rob Cross
Gerwyn Price 6-5 Adrian Lewis
James Richardson 6-5 Jimmy Hendriks
Richie Corner 6-4 Maik Langendorf
John Michael 6-3 Rowby-John Rodriguez
Joe Cullen 6-3 Steve Beaton

Fourth Round
Robbie Green 6-2 Wayne Jones
James Wade 6-4 Alan Norris
Stuart Kellett 6-4 Raymond van Barneveld
Daryl Gurney 6-4 Dave Chisnall
Mervyn King 6-3 Josh Payne
Gerwyn Price 6-1 Robert Thornton
James Richardson 6-3 Richie Corner
Joe Cullen 6-3 John Michael

Quarter-Finals
James Wade 6-0 Robbie Green
Daryl Gurney 6-4 Stuart Kellett
Mervyn King 6-4 Gerwyn Price
Joe Cullen 6-4 James Richardson

Semi-Finals
Daryl Gurney 6-4 James Wade
Joe Cullen 6-4 Mervyn King

Final
Joe Cullen 6-5 Daryl Gurney

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