Van Gerwen and Humphries started the match moderately. They dropped stitches especially on the doubles. Humphries dropped the fewest stitches and posted the first break. Everything went smoothly for a long time, until Humphries broke again in the second session of five legs and seemed to go into the break with a 3-7 lead. Van Gerwen then did something in return for the first time.

    However, Van Gerwen did not show any improvement in the future and lost the first four sessions 2-3 each time. Slowly but surely, the Englishman disappeared further and further from Van Gerwen’s sight, until he finally managed to rake into the game with 16-10. A bitter pill for Van Gerwen with a view to the World Cup darts.

    The final day will take place on Sunday. Raymond van Barneveld will face Michael Smith in the afternoon, Humphries will meet Nathan Aspinall. In the evening the winners of those games play against each other.

    ,,Unnecessary”, said Van Gerwen afterwards at Viaplay. ,,In the preparation I already felt less than the days before. I started badly, especially on the doubles. He threw out a few dirty finishes and I have to give him all the credits for giving, but I owe this defeat to myself.”

    Van Gerwen didn’t look as sharp as the match against Josh Rock, which he won 10-8 in an exciting match. “It’s easy to say something about it now, but it just wasn’t today. It’s just sour. I tried to make the gap smaller every time, but that didn’t work every time,” said the darts player who won the tournament in 2015, 2016 and 2017.

    The Players Championships Finals await Van Gerwen next week before he can travel to London to prepare for the World Cup. The biggest darts tournament will start in Alexandra Palace on December 15.