Image Courtesy Kais Bodensieck
MICHAEL VAN GERWEN claimed his seventh European Tour title of the year as he defeated James Wilson 8-6 in the final of the German Darts Championship in Hildesheim on Sunday.
The world number one lost just seven legs over the course of the weekend, backing up July's European Darts Matchplay with another crown to continue his dominance on the European Tour in 2018.
The £135,000 tournament at Halle 39 saw runner-up Wilson reach his first ever European Tour final, but Van Gerwen proved just too strong in the final, landing ton-plus checkouts of 154 and 118 to clinch the £25,000 prize.
Van Gerwen was at his unstoppable best, hitting a 103.56 tournament average across the weekend which began with a 6-0 rout of Cristo Reyes in round two.
The two-time World Champion made it back-to-back whitewashes against German crowd favourite Martin Schindler in the last 16 before dropping his one and only leg en route to the final in his 6-1 win over Dave Chisnall.
Van Gerwen then made it a hat-trick of whitewashes with a 7-0 triumph over Joe Cullen to reach the final.
"It's hard to perform at a high standard every week but I'm happy with how I played this weekend," said Van Gerwen.
"I didn't make too many mistakes which is always pleasing and I loved playing in front of this great crowd.
"I think 17 tournament wins so far this year isn't bad!
"There are so many tournaments coming ahead and I want to win every one of them. I'm going to be at it non-stop until the end of the year."
The Dutch ace raced out of the blocks into a 3-0 lead before Wilson tidied up 44 to notch his first leg on the board.
Wilson wired double 16 for a break of throw before clinical Van Gerwen stepped up to land magnificent 118 and 154 checkouts in back-to-back legs to open up a commanding 5-1 lead.
However, the Yorkshireman never gave up and clawed his way back into contention at 3-5 down, only for Van Gerwen to reassert his dominance and move within a leg of the title at 7-3.
Once again, Wilson refused to go down without a fight and found himself dreaming of the impossible after rattling off three successive legs thanks to some brilliant finishing under pressure.
Van Gerwen ended Wilson's hopes with an outstanding 11-dart leg to lift the German Darts Championship for a second time.
Wilson's impressive run to his third PDC ranking final saw the Huddersfield thrower record impressive victories over Jermaine Wattimena, Jonny Clayton, Robert Thornton, Ron Meulenkamp and Mensur Suljovic.
The Hildesheim event was also a significant one for Meulenkamp, who continued his progress to reach a second quarter-final on the continent this year.
2018 German Darts Championship
Friday August 31
Josh Payne 6-3 Andy Boulton
Mark Webster 6-5 Ted Evetts
Kyle Anderson 6-4 Lee Bryant
Darren Johnson 6-0 Christopher Hänsch
Jan Dekker 6-3 Darius Labanauskas
Ron Meulenkamp 6-2 Richard North
Andrew Gilding 6-2 Max Hopp
Krzysztof Ratajski 6-4 Vincent van der Voort
Martin Schindler 6-4 Justin Pipe
Michael Rasztovits 6-4 David Pallett
James Wilson 6-5 Jermaine Wattimena
Adrian Lewis 6-5 Toni Alcinas
Terry Jenkins 6-3 Ross Smith
Robert Thornton 6-5 Robert Marijanovic
Ricky Evans 6-3 Danny Noppert
Cristo Reyes 6-3 Nico Blum
Saturday September 1
Dave Chisnall 6-0 Mark Webster
Jan Dekker 6-4 Gerwyn Price
Ron Meulenkamp 6-5 Stephen Bunting
Joe Cullen 6-4 Josh Payne
Daryl Gurney 6-3 Darren Johnson
Michael Smith 6-1 Krzysztof Ratajski
Martin Schindler 6-2 Steve Beaton
Michael Rasztovits 6-3 Simon Whitlock
Darren Webster 6-2 Ricky Evans
James Wilson 6-5 Jonny Clayton
Robert Thornton 6-3 James Wade
Rob Cross 6-5 Kyle Anderson
Mensur Suljovic 6-2 Andrew Gilding
Adrian Lewis 6-5 Mervyn King
Michael van Gerwen 6-0 Cristo Reyes
Terry Jenkins 6-5 Ian White
Sunday September 2
Rob Cross 6-4 Michael Rasztovits
Mensur Suljovic 6-2 Darren Webster
James Wilson 6-3 Robert Thornton
Ron Meulenkamp 6-4 Michael Smith
Adrian Lewis 6-5 Daryl Gurney
Joe Cullen 6-5 Jan Dekker
Dave Chisnall 6-4 Terry Jenkins
Michael van Gerwen 6-0 Martin Schindler
Mensur Suljovic 6-2 Rob Cross
James Wilson 6-2 Ron Meulenkamp
Joe Cullen 6-1 Adrian Lewis
Michael van Gerwen 6-1 Dave Chisnall
James Wilson 7-4 Mensur Suljovic
Michael van Gerwen 7-0 Joe Cullen