By Alex Moss
17 APRIL 2017 • 11:09PM
Michael van Gerwen claimed a third HappyBet German Darts Masters title in a row as he defeated Jelle Klaasen 6-2 in the final in Jena.
The world number one had been in scintillating form throughout the Easter weekend, averaging more than 100 in each of his four games en route to the final, which culminated in a demolition job of his Dutch rival in the decider.
Van Gerwen kicked off with an 11-darter as he took out 93 for a 1-0 lead, before punishing three misses from Klaasen to double his advantage with a break of throw, before tops moved him halfway to further European Tour glory.
Klaasen got off the mark in the fourth leg as he capitalised on two missed darts at double 12 from the top seed to take out 80 and get his first leg on the board.
The Dutch duo then traded legs before van Gerwen checked out 100 to complete another 11-darter and move to the brink of victory.
The 27-year-old landed his third 180 of the final to start leg eight, before hitting tops to scoop the £25,000 top prize and his 15th European Tour title.
“It’s lovely,” said van Gerwen. “I think I played phenomenally here in Jena – I had two games of 110 average and one game of 108, you can’t really ask for any more.
“When you play this well it feels great, but I’ve worked really hard for this and make a lot of sacrifices, so I’m really glad it paid off.
“I love what I do and I love to perform for the great crowds like we do here in Germany.”
After a 110 average in his second round destruction of John Michael on Sunday, the reigning PDC world champion improved on this with a 110.78 average and some clinical finishing as he beat Cristo Reyes to reach the quarter-finals.
Next he faced old nemesis Raymond van Barneveld, but showed no signs of nerves as he stormed into the last four with another impressive 105.23 average, and a clinical 75 per cent checkout rate – including two huge checkouts of 114 and 164.
Standing in his way of a place in the final was the in-form Simon Whitlock, but the Australian could do little more than watch as he struggled to contain the Dutch ace in a 6-2 defeat.
And van Gerwen was again at his best as he fired in three 180s and another 107.33 average against Klaasen to take his tournament average up to 106, as he secured his 15th European Tour title, bouncing back from his loss to Peter Wright in the recent HappyBet German Darts Championship final in perfect fashion.
The European Tour continues next weekend with the HappyBet German Darts Open in Saarbrucken, with van Gerwen looking to continue his form among a 48-player field in the third of a dozen £135,000 events being held this year.