World Matchplay: Hall of Fame - Every champion in order
By Editorial Staff 15/07/2021
LARRY Butler's inaugural triumph in 1994 started a chain of World Matchplay champions that currently concludes with Dimitri Van den Bergh. Can the Belgian retain his crown and thus complete a unique double that will make him the only winner both at the Winter Gardens and elsewhere?
With the notable exception of Butler, who by today's system would have been ranked around 26 in the world, and Dimitri the World Matchplay crown has only been won by those ranked at the very top of their sport and who had already, or would go on to, collected major titles.
While there is little doubt that Taylor is the King of Blackpool many regard Colin Lloyd's 170 to win the title as the single greatest moment. Our contributor JR Lott has written eloquently about the remarkable achievement that was Butler's triumph as well as Dennis Priestley reaching three consecutive finals and never picking up the trophy.
For sheer drama and against the odds spirit surely Andy Hamilton's come back against Simon Whitlock (in 2011) and Joe Cullen's run in 2018 merit a mention, but neither went on to claim the title
If your looking for a single champion's performance perhaps Peter Evison's 8-1 demolition of Taylor in 1996 takes some beating? In more recent years the efforts of The Power in 2017 will live long in the memory, especially the peerless removal of MVG at the quarter-final stage.
As for 2021 will we see that special double from Dimitri or could Rob Cross upset the form book again and retain his 'Blackpool title'? It is these questions, and quite a few more, that will delight and surprise us as we see whose name gets added to the Phil Taylor trophy this year:
The World Matchplay
Roll of Honour
1994 Larry Butler def Dennis Priestley (16-12)
1995 Phil Taylor (def Dennis Priestley 16-11)
1996 Peter Evison (def Dennis Priestley 16-14)
1997 Phil Taylor (def Alan Warriner 16-11)
1998 Rod Harrington (def Ronnie Baxter 19-17)
1999 Rod Harrington (def Peter Manley 19-17)
2000 Phil Taylor (def Alan Warriner 18-12)
2001 Phil Taylor (def Richie Burnett 18-10)
2002 Phil Taylor (def John Part 18-16)
2003 Phil Taylor (def Wayne Mardle 18-12)
2004 Phil Taylor (def Mark Dudbridge 18-8)
2005 Colin Lloyd (def John Part 18-12)
2006 Phil Taylor def (James Wade 18-11)
2007 James Wade (def Terry Jenkins 18-7)
2008 Phil Taylor (def James Wade 18-9)
2009 Phil Taylor (def Terry Jenkins 18-4)
2010 Phil Taylor (def Raymond van Barneveld 18-12)
2011 Phil Taylor (def James Wade 18-8)
2012 Phil Taylor (def James Wade 18-15)
2013 Phil Taylor (def Adrian Lewis 18-13)
2014 Phil Taylor (def Michael van Gerwen 18-9)
2015 Michael van Gerwen (def James Wade 18-12)
2016 Michael van Gerwen (def Phil Taylor 18-10)
2017 Phil Taylor (def Peter Wright 18-8)
2018 Gary Anderson (def Mensur Suljovic 21-19)
2019 Rob Cross (def Michael Smith 18-13)
2020 Dimitri Van den Bergh (def Gary Anderson 18-10)
Lead Image: L Lustig (PDC)
MAD's 21 year old Global title holder has more to do.