Noppert Freezes Out Cool Hand to Claim PC 8

Red Dragon Darts

Danny Noppert beat World Champion Luke Humphries 8-6 to win Players Championship 8 in Leicester and secure his fifth ProTour title.

The Dutchman continues his incredible record of having never lost a Players Championship final in five attempts as he powered past world number one Humphries.

With little to split the pair in the final, it was Noppert’s superior finishing that helped him secure the title – landing 47% of his attempts compared to Humphries 35%.

“Both were struggling in the final but I am so happy to get over the line,” expressed an elated Noppert.

“Yesterday my performance was not so good but today I was there at the right moments.

“There were some crazy games today but I am really proud of myself for taking it over the line.”

It was Humphries who started the final brightly as he raced into a 2-0 lead before Noppert pinned a 126 checkout to get his first leg on the board.

A great spell for Noppert then saw him move 4-3 ahead, before Humphries levelled with a beautiful 128 checkout.

However from there, it was the world number one who was doing the chasing as Noppert edged ever closer to the title – sealing it with a 64 checkout on double ten.

Noppert shot up the PDC rankings when he lifted his first and only major TV title to date with the 2022 UK Open crown.

The world number 12 went on to secure two more Players Championship titles in 2023, and alongside maintaining this remarkable run in finals, is now on the hunt for more major success this year.

“I am speechless, but I am always fighting in finals,” said Noppert.

“Last week I played Luke and he beat me really hard. Today I got revenge and it is a really good feeling.

“Two years ago I was a UK Open winner and this year I am really going for it, I hope I can take another big title.”

After Chris Dobey picked up the ProTour title on Monday, Noppert’s victory means that there have now been eight different winners from as many Players Championship events in 2024.

The Dutchman started his run to victory with a comfortable 6-3 win over Robert Owen, before producing his best display of the day with a 106.63 average in a 6-3 win over Jim Williams.

Noppert then survived a scare in a 6-5 win over Stephen Burton to reach the Last 16, where he saw off Gerwyn Price 6-3 and followed that with a win by the same scoreline over Kevin Doets.

And in the semi-finals, the 33-year-old then beat Poland’s Radek Szaganski 7-2 to reach the final.

Humphries started his run in Leicester with a 6-3 win over Germany’s Paul Krohne, before averaging 107 and 106 in victories over Jeffrey De Zwaan (6-1) and Brendan Dolan (6-5) respectively

It was a day of narrow victories for the World Champion as he brought an end to Dobey’s winning run in a 6-5 win, and followed this by squeezing past Gary Anderson 6-4 in the quarter-finals, and Gian van Veen 7-6 in the last four.

April’s action in the PDC ProTour now sees a run of three European Tour events – starting with the International Darts Open in Riesa, Germany this coming weekend.

Players Championship action will then return on May 6-7 with two events in Hildesheim, Germany.

2024 Players Championship 8

(Mattioli Arena, Leicester)
Tuesday April 9
Last 16
Luke Humphries 6-5 Chris Dobey
Gary Anderson 6-2 Danny van Tripp
Stefan Bellmont 6-5 Rob Cross
Gian van Veen 6-3 Josh Rock
Radek Szaganski 6-4 Ricky Evans
Andrew Gilding 6-4 Jonny Clayton
Kevin Doets 6-5 Daryl Gurney
Danny Noppert 6-3 Gerwyn Price

Luke Humphries 6-4 Gary Anderson
Gian van Veen 6-5 Stefan Bellmont
Radek Szaganski 6-5 Andrew Gilding
Danny Noppert 6-3 Kevin Doets

Luke Humphries 7-6 Gian van Veen
Danny Noppert 7-2 Radek Szaganski

Danny Noppert 8-6 Luke Humphries


Images: PDC

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